Tuesday, 2 April 2013

And breathe...

Today is April 2. On May 2 I will be flying out to Mallorca to prepare a few days ahead of Jon and later my mother arriving. I can now see today's date, and the date of my departure on the same calendar page (it's a google calendar, not a wall calendar with kittens).

Since that realisation, all I can do is just breathe...

Do I feel ready? No. I'm yet to have entered a cycle race and I have only cycled 50 miles but once. I'm only still getting to grips with gears, I'm not used to my pedals and I'm unsure about cadence. I feel like the most naive cyclist that could enter a half ironman. And while I know I have bags of mental grit and stubborn determination, there will be things like tyre changes, technical descents and ascents for which some bike know how and experience would be very useful for.

I have a very practical list of things to do and very practical list of mental preparation to do on top of that. I feel it's achievable. But inevitably I feel like there should be more time. More time to cycle, more time stretching and lengthening my tight pecs, my irritated ulna and tarsal nerves. More time focussing on technique, running a few more miles,  definitely more time on the bike. And so I enter that phase where you cram as much into your days and weeks as you can, eating vitamin C, zinc and beetroot so you don't get sick doing it. This is the time when I really don't have a social life beyond hot yoga and receiving Amazon parcels. This is where I would sell my first born for a magic way to get more time on the bike. It's a good thing I don't have a first born but I do have a pony if anyone has a solution.

I am afraid. Not of what I might learn about myself, or even falling of a particularly scary hairpin which I viewed on the Google Earth map of the bike course last night. I am not scared of being the Last Female Competitor, or crying or soiling myself or even getting face kicked by the 18 year old men who will start in the wave behind me. I am scared of that damn cut off mark and not making it by mere seconds. I am scared of having my race number taken off me because I don't make it through the first 35 km of the bike course on time. I am scared of letting down all those people who have shown their faith in me by donating to Freedom from Torture. I absolutely cannot let them down, not the donors, not the staff, not the volunteers, not the clients.

For the next 30 days, I'll train and train like a teenager approaching their final exams. I'll cram just to feel that tiny bit more confident on the sandy start line. I'll even sleep with copies of Triathlete magazines under my pillow!

To be a part of my tri adventure, please visit www.justgiving.com/halfirongirl - the price of a pint would be very welcome.

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