After a decidedly nasty smash fest of legs on my turbo session last night I was going to make a quick exit home to recoup. (Read: shower and eat). One of our friends however was in the store and we got chatting. He has signed up for IM MY in February. And like many people it will be his first Ironman. This guy has completed Ultra's which blows my mind, but still those words 'Ironman' seem to spark fear into some.
Last year I had a countdown timer to Race day. I let it consume my life. This year I don't have time to let training consume my life. There is too much other stuff going on and lets face it - it was not really healthy (mentally speaking). So this year I am just doing the training...the goal is still there, the hunger as big as ever but I am not thinking too much about it...it is a big thing...but also it is not.
Having said that though it is hard not to notice everyone else counting down the days. Reminding themselves that the clock is ticking. Will I be ready? Can I finish? Will I cramp up? Words that my friend was using: 'if' and 'can't'. Now IF there is any advice I would give at all it would be just omit the word 'can't' from your vocabulary and stop saying 'if'.
Getting your head around completing an IM is mental. Once your head accepts the challenge it then just needs to tell the body what to do. Your body is merely a vehicle. It has no thoughts, it is just muscle and tissue. Some have more than others. That is why some people go faster and others go slower. BUT. An IM is NOT an insurmountable challenge it is something we can all do. You just need to approach it with the right frame of mind and make sure you do the work so the body is ready.
I used to be a very negative person. Always hiding and never thinking I could do certain things. Positive thinking is powerful. So anything could happen on the day - so what? Race day is about being mentally and physically prepared and in order to do that you need to start believing in yourself today. We all believe in you but that is not what is needed. YOU need to believe in YOU. Once you get that, the rest is all plain sailing with only slightly a little pain thrown in for pleasure ;)