Whew – with yesterday’s announcement, I couldn’t help but to choke up at all of your amazing comments — thank you so much! However, I also received a couple of sly comments and I wanted to address a couple of key decision factors that influenced my decision to take such a big risk and completely alter my life for the next 346 days. This post isn’t about recognizing the sly comments, but instead about the honest process I took to decide to evolve from a runner to a triathlete.
Ironman Was A Family Decision
As much as I have dreams for myself, a goal like Ironman includes countless hours of training, especially in the last three months leading up to the race, and as a newlywed it was important to me that Chicken Face understood the commitment. It was also important that we talked about this decision as I didn’t want to be the selfish one in our relationship – it is our first year of marriage afterall! However, with Chicken Face working and in grad school, I thought it would be an optimal time as he too is busy with his personal goals. He’s amazing as he fully supports this journey and is willing to have patience with me as my free time will be sparse.
Ironman Training Will Not Be Attempted Alone
I am 110% confident that I would not, and could not, do Ironman training on my own. I can Google until my eyes turn blue, but I know that I absolutely needed a coach throughout the entire process. Thankfully, a friend of mine recommended a coach in the area as he helped her train for her first Ironman. He is an elite Ironman sponsored by Powerbar and after interviewing him to ensure that he can put up with my countless questions, I’m excited to be working with a professional. He’ll be helping me not only put a training plan together, but also with lactic threshold testing, bike fittings, bike trainings, organizing and executing group workouts with the other Ironman athletes he’s coaching, and more. I’ll ask him if I can share his info, but for now, we’ll call him Coach Paul.
I Know I Don’t Know How To Swim and Bike
Yes, I know that my swimming and cycling is novice – beginner at best. However, this is also the reason why I hired Coach Paul. He’s not one of those coaches that limits how often you can email, call, text, etc. with him (yes, I’ve seen coaches actually offer that crap) and he knows that these are my weak areas. While someone of my level could probably train for an Ironman in eight months, I’m taking a full year to train and ensure that I am not rushing into anything. This is also why I’ve scheduled a variety of triathlons in my 2012 race schedule to help me lead up to this event. You can see the race schedule here.
Stretched Too Thin
For a long time, I thought I’d complete an Ironman after my time at my current job. However, I realized that perhaps I was the one creating that issue. Instead, I started (and am still having) conversations with my managers to ensure that they understand what training for an Ironman really means. Thankfully, I have managers that understand and recognize the importance of what I’m about to attempt. Thus, I’m working to ensure that my life has as much work-life balance as possible, including not feeling guilty if I leave the office at 5:30.
Am I Crazy Stupid or Stupid Crazy?
I know that there will be problems along the way and going into the Ironman may leave some people scratching their heads, but I’m doing my best to try and set myself up for success. When I’ve told people in my person, I’ve had every response from, “Wow – that’s amazing…” to “Yikes. You need to get to work…” and “Do you even know how to swim?” To the nay-sayers: whatever. To everyone else who has my back: I won’t let you down.
So allow me to say thank you in advance as I continue to find my way throughout this process and ramble on about Ironman training from a complete newbie’s POV.
Happy Running (or should I say Tri-ing).