The year is in full swing and after a nine-month hiatus, I am thrilled to be back on the competitive circuit!
After my injury of late May, 2015, I was forced to cancel my Alcatraz swim, my swim across the Great South Bay, and other important events too numerous to think about (anymore). That all made the last six months of 2015 somewhat frustrating, and when I did begin to work out again, I had to make accommodations and move carefully at first. The thought of falling and getting injured again was always in the back of my mind (okay, it still is). Nine months later, I know that I still have to regain strength, endurance, and an overall feeling of confidence.
Having races on my schedule is motivating, and the hugely competitive side of me needs me to constantly perform better. So now that I’m back, it’s a good time to jump again in to writing about what I am doing – all as a lead-in to my Alcatraz swim on August 13th.
So far, I’ve done these races:
(1) January 23: Freezer 5k Run in Amana, Iowa: Although it was something like 20 degrees out that morning, the sun was out and there was no wind. I did not have a current 5k time to use as a benchmark, so I decided this race would create my time for the year ahead. I finished in 32:28 (decent for me) and was 14/28 in my age group (ten-year increments). I hope to edge closer to thirty minutes going forward, and also to feel more comfortable throughout the run.
(2) January 31: Muscatine YMCA Indoor Triathlon: I enjoyed and did well (1st place) in this event last year and was very curious to see how I would swim, bike, and run this time. I was surprised (well, shocked) to be about two minutes total off my 2015 time – every event was slower. Although I came in 2nd in my age group, I saw this as a wake-up to help me realize much I need to continue to work to get myself stronger.
(3) February 13: Hawkeye Community Rowing Indoor Challenge: Indoor rowing is tough–many people feel as though they are going to pass out, fall off the rower, and/or have to be carried off the floor as they participate. For me, rowing all-out in a 2k, 1k, and a 500-meter event is tougher than any other type of race, and the mental preparation is an exercise in itself. I was pretty much satisfied with my times in each of those races, and thankfully, our relay team did very well, had fun, and the whole Indoor Challenge was an outstanding event.
(4) February 20: Freezefest 5k in Marion, Iowa: I was so happy throughout the week as I followed the weather forecast for Saturday. The sunny, warm, over 50-degree morning was perfect for running although the wind made it more of a Breezefest than a Freezefest.
My prime goal for this run was to do better than my time of a month ago. I did that, finishing in 32:05, #6 of 12 in my age group (five-year increments). My goal now is to continue to knock time off that throughout the year (and stay injury-free, of course).
There are actually 173 days left until Alcatraz and I am counting down the days, determined to show up at the super-tough swim feeling strong and confident. Every event I do prior to August 13th is to help me get to that goal.
Next up: Performance Fitness Dri-Tri this Saturday, February 27th.