Monday, January 19, 2009

Ironguides Journal Wk15

Well I am officially three quarters of the way through training. There are 39 glorious, pain filled, angst ridden, and nail biting days left before we tread water waiting for the gun before we swim, get burnt on the bike and scorched on the run. I did this last year and as I type I am trying to recall why I am doing it again?
Oh that’s right. Last year I had the most fantastic time of my life. A door opened. The light bulb went off. I found my passion, I had a dream. Ok, I shall stop there before I burst into song or sound too much like Oprah! I was chatting to a fellow training buddy this morning online. He, like me last year is going for IM for the first time, it is also his first triathlon (I think) – it seems there are also crazy male versions of Emma out there (Hoooray!!) The only difference being he is a rather good cyclist, where as I had only just figured out how to unclip!
Me thinks he is going through some negative thoughts right now. Thinking about the mountain it is he has paid to climb. The only words of advice I could give were motivational as I still know squat about tactics and the sport. And so this is what I said. Swim, Smile, Bike, Smile and then keep Smiling on the run right until you cross that finish line. Have no goals only to finish. Enjoy the experience and forget about the pain. If your head says I can, the body will follow.
Not much I know, but the advice I was given last year was pretty much the same. Don’t give yourself goals. The only goal is to finish. I was warned of a tough nasty day. I tell you, my so called motivational training buddies painted a pretty nasty picture. I took the advice all on board and prepared for the worst. So I was pleased as punch when on my last 10k of the run I realised I hadn't hit the wall of doom and gloom I was forewarned about and was having a fabulous day.
So it may or may not happen. Think about it too much and the worst probably will. You cannot control your competition, you cannot control the elements and you cannot control the sea lice munching on your skin, punctures on the bike and the heat on the run. And to a point you cannot always control the body (read: peeing on the bike!). You can control the mind though (so long as you are hydrated). The longer the day goes on the harder this will be but positive thoughts I believe work wonders.
I am in the midst of struggling with those positive thoughts right now. Every day is becoming a real struggle and most days I feel I am making giant leaps backwards, rather than forwards. I am also starting to realise how for the past year I have dedicated my life, my thoughts, my sleep, my body, my spirit, my everything (opps, another song coming on!) to this one goal.
My mum always said; “Emma, don’t put all your eggs in one basket”. Well mum, it seems I have, I am pretty darn excited and scared about it all at once, but what the heck, if you don’t take risks in life then you are going to coast along with those two words “what if” echoing in the back of your mind. And we all know that I do not go to the "What If" school of thought. My school these days is one of No Regrets. And while this ‘No Regrets, Ironguide Method 7day-a-week’ school is tougher than an elephant’s bum I do believe 15weeks in, that this is a style of learning I have learned to love.
It has made me stronger both mentally and physically. I will now admit it, I am officially 4kg heavier than this time last year. I get in all the same clothes so no FAT comments please. Or else :)
Having a coach in the internet wings is a real blessing, thank you Coach Vinnie for your words of wisdom. I don’t need a kick up the butt, but I do, like most people need encouragement and wisdom. And so from my coach to close friends, thank you for your support thus far. It is, as always, but perhaps not always shown, greatly appreciated.


Anonymous said...

Great post Emma, I'll see you's my first IM. I live in Phuket and saw you at Laguna and meant to introduce myself but got sidetracked... as one does after too many beers.


Emma said...

Cheers Leo!
Quite understand, with a table full of beers I myself was a little worse for wear - very unusual :P
See ya in IMM!!