Race report from Worlds 70.3…. I am at a total loss of words of how to even write this. I want to stay happy & cheerful, but – well – it wasn’t that kind of experience!! I will try and just stay honest. Regardless, I will start with the positive – because there was a lot of it. 🙂
- Australia was a bucket list place to visit and it proved to be above and beyond what I imagined. The people were respectful and incredibly nice, the scenery, nature, the water, everything was beautiful and the food was absolutely amazing. Who knew?
- My college roomie and myself made it a goal to get here back in 2015. We achieved it – and get to spend the 10 days together, racing, exploring and eating our way through Australia. To top that off – her dad competed as well & took home a 2nd place world title (should’ve been first but..… well… I will just say he is always first in my book!)
- The course was superb. The swim was gorgeous, the weather superb on that particular morning, the bike course was made for me, and the run was not so bad either… (coastal views & a lot of spectators)
- I had the absolutely BEST support system in place. From my friends support w/ daily motivational chats & providing fun and joy to my kids during long training days, to my father in law and my own sweet mother who helped keep up the household responsibilities during my Australian absence, and of course my husband who dealt with it all – the excitement, the nerves, the long weekend workouts, the super early bedtimes and of course taking over the roll of household CEO during the 10 days I was away. I am amazed by it all. This allowed me to make it all possible & motivated me to make the trip worth it.
- I went in with an injury free summer of focused training, clean eating, and some solid focus. I put in the effort and mileage it would take to achieve my goals set for this race.
So – hey – perfect scenario all lined up to have an A+ day right?!
Well, I did have a day. Was my race totally awful? Absolutely not. A) I finished. B) I didn’t get last. But, and those of you who know me well, know I wanted more!
Yes, I am well aware we all have races we aren’t happy with (if you are human). But this one was different. It wasn’t the course, or my knee hurt… it wasn’t my goggles filled with water or my bike had a mechanical issue. It wasn’t that I gave up. It was 100% body. I had no “second gear”, no energy to fight. I knew something was array just not sure quite what. And no chance am I chalking it up to age!! I did, for a minute, wonder if this was the “new me” but I knew something was up.
BTW if any of you reading this think you are too old to do anything athletic, go watch an Ironman competition. 70+ year olds out there absolutely crushing it. Super inspirational (like this guy – AMAZING).
I have had several weeks to “digest” the experience and it still weighs on me a bit (the bummer of not exceeding my expectations I had set for myself).
I have also (since my arrival home) learned a lot from my family, mainly my daughter. A friend of mine asked Ella outside her classroom one afternoon how mom did in the race (I was still in Australia) and she responded something like this:
“Well, she did awesome. But she wasn’t happy. I am mad at her for not being proud of herself! She is a great triathlete and was at Worlds!”
When I returned home, she overheard me tell someone I wasn’t super happy with my results and she slapped me (ever so lightly) and said “MOM!”.
Thus, I have learned to be careful with my words. To remember I am so grateful to have the health & passion to compete at this level. We had the whole discussion about how hard mommy worked to reach her goals and it’s ok to be disappointed for a little while – it is how you grow. I think I said something about how I still learned a lot, I had a great time in Australia and I still love the sport. All truth J. She told me how proud of me she was of me for just racing. She added that I was the 6th American to cross the finish line in my age group and that is pretty impressive – “for a mom”.
These kids!! They were there in Austin when I qualified for Worlds and celebrated with me. They know how hard I worked to get there. They see it day in and day out. They have seen me exhausted from long workouts and they have been a huge part of my recovery & my training (jumping on my back while I stretch, “bringing” me to soccer games while I hydrate, and throwing all the good ingredients into my smoothies). They know I wake up at 4:30am so I can be home for them when they are ready to face their own day. They saw it all go down. All the long hours of training I put in to achieve my goals on race day.
It just wasn’t my day. And they will have days like that too.
But to them – the journey WAS a success. And that is what I need to soak in.
I have reflected enough about the whys, the hows and the what ifs. I have tried to add a positive spin and be truly happy about the day. And the best way to do it is to focus on the JOURNEY. Because that truly was the best part. I love pushing myself during training. And on race day, I loved soaking it all in, watching my teammates and friends… and being in Australia was an adventure all on it’s own to be grateful for.
I am getting closer to finding the reasons behind my “lack of push” and it turns out the body was, well, slightly ‘broken’. I knew something wasn’t right it just took some time to figure it out. Unbeknownst to me at the time, I was overly fatigued, hormones a mess, adrenals kaput, and Cortisol through the roof. Slight problem when you set yourself some hefty goals!
So that about sums it up.
It wasn’t just the day. It was my body telling me no.
So, now time to listen to the body and make health a priority. It will not be easy but I will take it as a new adventure. As my dear friend said, “temporary discomfort for a better season / life / body / mind in 2017”.