Gotta love the Tennessee local hospitality. Lots of “y’all” and “fixin to” and “you want sweet tea with that?”…. I even got carded a few times.
To catch you up a bit (it has been ages since I have written last) – this race was more about getting to the start line than the finish line. It was about having some really tough workouts that pushed me beyond what I thought I could do. It was about getting healthy and building myself back up (safely). It was about meeting new friends, and reuniting with others. It was about new beginnings as well as new limits. It was about fun. Adventure. And challenges. It was about enjoying the process and being grateful for the opportunity.
2017 – the year of knowledge!
So this isn’t going to really be your typical race report, as – – to be completely honest – I didn’t have a super interesting day (which is usually a good thing)! We started on time, the weather was beautiful (albeit a bit too hot), the spectators / volunteers were amazing, the course was legitimately tough, yet gorgeous all at the same time, and it felt amazing for my body to feel strong(ish) again. I am slightly annoyed my running legs didn’t seem to “work as planned” but what can you do! About 15 miles into the bike – a spectator shouted “2nd amateur!” Even if I only held on to it for a little while – I’ll take it.
The run was… let’s just say, me feeling like road-kill watching a lot of “gazelles” fly by me. But you know what? I was still smiling and loving be out there.
Is that still considered a comeback?
At the end of the day, I was proud of representing at a World Champion event after a six-month training hiatus. I went from 15-minutes- a-day of light stretching and walking earlier this year and feeling like total complete shit to competing again. And for that, I’m thrilled.
I’ve learned a lot this year and being grateful is at the top of the list. Gratitude teaches you to appreciate the moment you are in at any given time and I am doing just that! So rather than a standard race report….. I’m listing my grateful race “take-aways”.
- I am grateful for those that believe in me, through all my ups and downs.
- I am grateful for my son and daughter who play & sing all their crazy songs over and over (and over and over) so I had a song(s) in my head constantly during the 13.1 miles of running.
- I am grateful for the Port-o-let at mile 9 (and 11) and the nice volunteer who helped me get my kit over my shoulder. Enough said.
- I am grateful for my swim coach (only coach) who reminded me a wetsuit might help my non-kicking legs float (when told surprisingly it was a wetsuit legal race the morning of). Equally grateful for my friend and teammate Cindy who loaned me a sleeveless wetsuit! #lovemytribe
- I am grateful for my swamp roadies who took me up many a hill in SoCal to prepare for the 3500 ft. of climbing on the Chattanooga bike course.
- I am grateful for my dear friend (and roomie) Cortney who celebrated my race, even though the weekend didn’t quite go her way. #girlsweekend
- I am grateful to the race director & IM who decided 40-44 year olds should go in the 2nd wave behind the pros and the men should race on Sunday.
- I am grateful for my Betty teammates (and their sherpas who I quickly made adopt me for the day). New friends and ones I reunited with – they did not disappoint!! #luckyBetty
- I am grateful (and impressed) my friends and family who – even though they couldn’t be there in person – tracked me and texted me. Virtual support is always the best.
- I am grateful for my friend and running partner Renee who always reminds me there is such a thing as “muscle memory”.
- I am grateful for Chattanooga and Ironman & all my training buddies for bringing back my love to the sport.
- And – of course – I am grateful for the hubs who continues to support my crazy endeavors and makes me feel like a champ – no matter what!!! ♥♥
I am the luckiest!!!
What’s next you might ask? Still rebuilding. I got a taste of feeling good throughout my training but I need to be careful not to overdo it. A year ago, I was spiraling downward and now I finally feel like I’m on the up!
Longevity is the goal and if I can continue to compete, smile and enjoy the process, that’s really all I can ask for…..
Thanks for reading, following & supporting, means the world to me.