When I started planning out this season, it began as most of my idea's usually do... a generous helping of bravado combined with impulsiveness with only the bare minimum of actual thinking or planning.
Basically what I had written down was this
- Win the local Fleet Feet series points championship (sprints)
- AG Nationals (Qualify for worlds with a good day)
- Aquabike Nationals (Podium)
Of course that was at the end of last year.
Most people (myself included) consider a year a long time in the abstract... that is, looking forward from today a year seems far off. Unfortunately (for me) when it comes to becoming faster in racing a year is not that long... especially when multiple sports need to be improved fairly substantially.
The next step I went through was all consuming despair. I was already locked in to the races, but not where I needed to be in the numbers department. Oh sure, I'm fit. Hell I've been fit for years. But Fit =/= Fast. Turning in a 2:25 at Rev3 Knoxville didn't do anything to re-establish my hopes, bad day or no. Most of my other races haven't been noticeably faster than 2013, although I'll be the first to say trying to compare two days a year apart is both maddening and fruitless when it comes to discerning truly accurate information. My training has been promising and my run at the Knoxville 1/2 marathon was a step forward (pun intended) but nonetheless... both my run and my swim are still much farther away from where I had secretly harbored hope for them being at this point in the year. My bike is still sitting at about a 4.3w/kg ftp (possibly as high as 4.5 as I've lost a bit of weight in the last few weeks and have been putting in a bit more t.i.t.s.) which is respectable but certainly not strong enough to make up for my swim or (most damning) my run.
Which leads to the step I'm at right now... acceptance. Not complacency mind you, never that... I doubt I'll ever be complacent when it comes to my racing... but an acceptance that I've put in the time I was able to put in (or that I thought I was able to put in) and followed my plan as closely as possible (I think I missed one day I had planned over the last 6 months, and it was while I was on vacation.) and now all that I can do is finish these last couple of weeks, get a good taper and race the absolute best I can on the morning of.
Will it be enough? The realist in me points to a resounding no. I think on paper even on a good day I'm still a couple of minutes off being fast enough for a top 18 (or likely even top 25) ag finish. That probably goes for the Sprint on Sunday as well. (I'm doing both races)
Regardless, I'll be enjoying my weekend. My new goal is to PR the Olympic distance and let all the things I have no control over fall where they may. I don't mind getting crushed, so long as I know I didn't leave anything on the table.
All in all I'm happy with how my training is developing. Something about how long it took to build Rome comes to mind. I'm still moving towards my larger goals, steadily. So long as my health holds up things should be fine.
Saturday is the Oak Ridge Velo TT. I won't be doing the full Omnium this year as I feel the crit is a little more risk than reward this close to some bigger races, and the road race... well I just wasn't looking forward to it the same way I was the TT, and since they're on the same day I decided to focus on those 7 miles this year.
|Warming up last year... hoping to crush my time this year.|
Next week I should have a short report on the TT, and maybe a review... I've got a review in mind, but need to get the time to finish (err...start) it. There's also some interesting stuff going on in my garage, but at the risk of it being a disappointment, I think I'll wait on sharing it.
If you suffered through all of the above, Kudos! You deserve a picture of a cat trying to be Godzilla.
|Aaaaaahnnnnnnaaahhhhhggggg!!!! Or whatever sound Godzilla makes.|