Thursday, 28 February 2013

The final countdown

I'm currently writing this post with shingles. Or at least, while I have shingles, it's not like I have trained a virus to type or anything... I'm doing pretty well with shingles. I thought it was a reaction to chlorine and so I kept running and swimming (yes I question the logic in repeating swimming when I thought it was the cause of my ailment!) but now half of Salford has chicken pox... 

It's ten weeks till my half ironman. I should be quite highly strung. Instead I am calm. There is nothing my worry can do now. I have a great coach and I pay them! This means I report back on what I could do this week and they work out what I might be able to do next week. Last week I couldn't cycle due to an infection caused by antibiotics. This week, infection lingers and I have shingles. Man they are going to earn their money!

The next ten weeks has the same amount of time in it whether I am better or worse. I have a training plan of nine sessions per week, I have a to do list of 45 items and fast growing. But I have inner peace. At one stage I was fraught with nervous energy. I wanted the world to stop. I wanted everyone to help me. I wanted to ignore everything else going on and live in squalor eating chef ready meals and having a cleaner from now till May 11th. But actually I can't stand the chaos that seems to come with squalor!

Ironman Mallorca is a testing ground for me. With its women only start and a generous cut off time, I will simply try and get to the finish and meet as many of my race goals as I can. I have not trained for this event, I have simply learned from this event. I have not pushed myself to personal bests or beasted anything, I have simply kept pushing myself to a new limit every day and done my best every day. When you are starting from a point of no swimming or cycling background that is all that can be expected. 

I had hoped very much that the next ten weeks can be about hard training and not just learning and inshallah if my health returns it may be. If not, then ten weeks of learning is what I have and I will make the most of it. I'll also try and cook the odd dinner, do some laundry and acknowledge my family! No one but me gets what this means to make it to the start line and I should not expect anyone but me to get me there or help me there. The goals I have set for this race hint at a personal triumph: yes I can learn to swim bike run but yes I can also learn to be a partner, a step mum, and not a career woman all in the same training period! Yes I can switch off from my fast and frantic London lifestyle to celebrate Christmas (ok I trained on New Year's Eve... ) And I can still make the start line. When I make the start line, I'll be full of excitement knowing I can take another start line, and maybe for this one, I can train as I learn!

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