Many of you are either racing this weekend or will be toeing the line at Ironman Wisconsin in a few weeks. Some of you are coming into your big races after a season with no issues to speak of, while others of you feel like you have been in an uphill battle from the beginning. You may have had your best training sessions, numbers and times to date. While some of you might not have, or have had to think outside the box to build your fitness.
Regardless of where you fall, there will always be at least a few thoughts of self doubt that creep in as race day approaches. Some examples for you
- Can I do this?
- Can I go faster this year?
- I didn't do as much as I have in the past, does that mean I am less fit?
- I am 10lbs heavier this year, does that mean I am less fit?
- Can I qualify for Kona.
- I haven't felt great in these last few weeks, does that mean I won't have a good race?
In short, here are your answers
- You are capable of much more than you think. You don't have to prove it in training, before race day. Whether you haven't run over 2hrs, or you haven't ridden 100 miles, it doesn't matter.
- Comparing times from year to year is a tough thing to do and should be avoided. There are too many variables that come into play from race to race.
- NO! More is not better. I am training 40% less this year and am much more fit...
- NO! Again, I will use myself as an example. I am 12lbs heavier this season and going much, much better. Remember Ironman is about strength, not speed. It is not about going fast, but slowing down the least.
- Again, something you can't control....all you can do is execute your race!
- No, many of us are very tired leading into the taper. Feeling good in training means nothing, the only day that counts is race day!
It doesn't matter how your season has gone to this point. It doesn't matter what you have done and what you have not done. The important thing to remember is that you can only control ONE thing and that is the next thing that you do! Worrying about the past or things that you cannot control is wasted energy.
I am not saying you shouldn't look back at your training, because you should. But only look back at the positive. There is a huge connection between mind and body. If you think positive, if you remember those great sessions that you have had this season and if you picture your race going well, you have a much better chance of it happening! The day will be hard at certain times and if you have a positive mindset, you will come out of those low points much more quickly.
Another point to remember is that in these last few weeks, you should try reduce negative stress as much as possible in your life. I have talked before about how in many ways your body will not differentiate where stress is coming from, i.e. - training, work, home, etc. Reduce negative stress anywhere in your life and your body will likely react positively.
There is not one way, or a "right" way to get fit. It is just about what works for you, your body and your life! Remember that and know that in just a few weeks you will be rewarded for all of your hard work! Believe in yourself, believe you will accomplish your goals and believe that you will have a great race and it just might happen!
A quick note on my training....going very well. I am fit, I am strong and I am just waiting for these next two weeks to pass so I can out there and race. I'll end with a quick quote that I read once, which will stick with me on race day.
"If it's hurting me, it's killing them!"
See you all soon!