These past two weeks marked weeks 19 and 18 until IMC, so ideally that should be somewhere in the middle of IM base training. It gets a little complicated being that I'm still trying to train for 70.3 intensity/speed (Rev3 Portland, woot woot!), but it's all good. The priority is now IMC so whatever comes of that will be what it will be. That said, it's been back-to-back big weeks of training, at least in my world. I know for many of you big volume is totally the norm, but for me it's new territory, and.... yea, I'm tired alright, but I'm having a blast with new experiences.
Honestly, I have no idea how I'll be with this Ironman stuff, let alone on race day. That doesn't scare me. The unknown is simply a motivator for me to see what's up in this body of mine. I've had highs and lows in this sport already, and I know if I want to survive this next round of IM training, I got to have the right state of mind and make sure I never lose sight that it's all for fun. Push hard and don't be a wimp and realize sacrifices will have to be made, but don't inflict unnecessary pressure and don't be a headcase d-bag about it. Enjoy the journey.
Part of that journey includes sucking it up and dealing with whatever harsh realities Mother Nature throws at ya on a bike ride or whatever. This is where some of the real tests surface. Do you really have to give up and go home or can you tough it out? I got a good taste of that this past Sunday, especially seeing how my riding partner was one tough cookie despite the situation. I'm talking about ER, who joined me on my second 5-hour ride to date.
Our ride--throughout Orange County from the mountains by my house (Santiago) down to Laguna Beach, up to Newport, through Irvine and back to the mountains--was pretty cool, for a couple reasons. First, it was nearly non-stop talk the whole time. Funny because up until now ER's just been a blog friend, and this was our first time hanging out in person.* Needless to say, we had A LOT to catch up on in the life department :) Second, the weather decided to be less than desirable, mostly during the second half.... drizzle, then real rain, more rain, some wind and a little on the chilly side. I was overdressed anyways so I wasn't suffering too badly, but ER was only in a short-sleeve jersey and shorts. She wasn't acting miserable, but I still made the offer to cut the ride short if she was too cold or miserable. She refused to stop early. Badass. At one point toward the end, I couldn't help but laugh because the rain was really coming down and I couldn't even see out of my sunglasses plus it was slippery as hell. By the end, we were like two drown rats--covered in dirt, grit and soaked to the bone. It was the best feeling ever. Looking back, I think the weather took more out of me than I realized... I was wiped from that ride! I failed at pic-taking for the day, except for this glimpse at the dirty damage:
*It's crazy how the triathlon blog world can connect people and form true friendships, and for the most part, if you're smart about it, it's not sketchy at all. At least in my opinion. With the Internet being a sketchy thing, I don't think a lot of people outside our world understand this concept of how meeting people off the Internet can possibly be safe. But in our defense, it'd be pretty hard to "fake" being a triathlete with a "fake" blog going on, ya know?
~~~Anyways, as anticipated I'm now in my rest and recovery week. I have a couple new friends who came out and decided to join me. (Yes, I know this picture is absolutely repulsive, so sorry if I just made you throw up in your mouth heehehee. Those things are seriously just wrong. Freakishy deformed and scary.)