After posting last night, I watched this week's episode of "Extreme Weight Loss," in which the contestant trained for and completed a Half Ironman Triathlon (that's a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, and 13.1 mile run) as part of her weight loss journey. She had already lost a lot of weight at that point, but still carried a hefty 213 lbs for the event. That's less than I weigh now, but not by much! She struggled to complete the race, but ultimately managed to finish within the allotted time. Watching her was both humbling and inspiring!
Then my husband/#1 fan and I had a heart-to-heart about my inner turmoil regarding my current plans. He agrees with all my friends (and thanks for your feedback, by the way!!!) who believe I should follow through with my training and race NOW rather than postponing, and he thinks I should do the sooner race rather than one Candice and I had chosen.
The earlier race is superior to the later one for these reasons:
1. Warmer water = no need for a wetsuit and no freezing to death due to inability to buy a wetsuit at this time.
2. Closer location = no long drive or need for a hotel = less money spent and easier for my family to be there to cheer me on.
3. Familiar location = ability to see and possibly even train on the actual courses = less fear of the unknown.
4. Timing = Race will be over before we get sucked into the chaos of "Back to School" time.
5. More informative website = more user friendly for a first-timer.
There are a few drawbacks, of course:
1. Three weeks sooner = three fewer weeks to train. Duh.
2. Longer swim = more tired for the bike and run.
3. Candice won't be able to be there to cheer me on, which makes me sad. :-(
So I was leaning towards a decision, and then I started thinking about this weekend and needing to shuffle around my workouts to accommodate some plans. On the schedule this morning was a short 30-minute run, but given the amazing cool weather, I decided to make another attempt at a 4-mile run instead.
What an outstanding decision that was! It was a glorious, beautiful morning, and I felt fantastic throughout the whole run. I knew with every step that I would finish the 4 miles. My pace was steady for the first 3 miles, and then I slowed down in the final mile, because most of the that mile was uphill. I even ran up the street (though not the very steepest one) to my house for the first time in years! I finished strong and immediately felt invincible....which is good, because I'm going to need that kind of confidence to carry me through my triathlon training!!
This is still unofficial because I'm not ready to commit yet (though I just learned that the race usually sells out, so I better make up my mind right quick!), but my tentative plan is to participate in the Iron Girl Columbia Sprint Triathlon on August 17, 2014. It's a 0.62 mile swim, 16 mile bike, 3.4 mile run, women only. I've been told it's a really good race, and especially good for first-timers, so I'm excited. And nervous. Nope, more than nervous -- TERRIFIED. But also pumped and motivated and more than just a little bit CRAZY. Let's do this!!!!
P.S. You may have noticed that the race is on the 17th. Today is also the 17th. Yep, I have exactly one month left to train. Yikes.