Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Lesson Earned

And for dessert I'd like a huge slice of humble pie, please...

As Arjun's post would suggest, Sunday was a tough day. I can't use it as an excuse, because it was the same temperature for everyone, I was just one of the many who was not really prepared for just how hard it was going to be. I'll post my full race report on my blog so as not to take up too much space here. I'm really appreciative of everyone who came to watch (Sara Spears, Arjun, Jen, Claire, Zero, Barf, Matt Augustin, Emily and Bryan), and those who checked up on me later, came out to Bay Cafe and then took me to Urgent Care at 9:30 pm.

I certainly earned my stripes the hard way that day. This year I have raced in a broad spectrum of conditions, from random warmth in February (in San Diego) to the cold of Club Challenge, from the 50 degree pouring rain at Kinetic Sprint to 100 degrees and burning sun at Eagleman. Of all the races I would have expected to not be favorable, Columbia was the best of 2008. So I try and take something from every race, which is be prepared for anything and everything on race weekend.

The hardest part of Sunday for me was not even being reduced to walking, but for everyone to have to see it. My meltdown occurred not because I wasn't prepared training-wise, but because I did not execute a proper strategy on race day. I had a decent swim (top 20% overall, top 1/3 in age group) and despite having to get off my bike late in the race, still wound up with the 123rd fastest bike. I was 9th in the age group off the bike and under normal circumstances am faster than all but 2 of the guys who finished ahead of me. But when the body stops, it stops. I actually can't believe I walked that far, it was not smart and I wish I had not done it. I haven't slept really in two days because my shoulders are so burned.

Ultimately I realize that I'm not quite ready for an Ironman yet, and that the fall is dedicated to getting the hardest part out of the way by racing a marathon. I won't be able to forget this awful, humiliating experience, and will put a plan in action that no other races go like this again.


Just a few upcoming things to tantalize you - June 20 is the Toga Party at Alex and Melissa's place. Saturday morning is the Baltimore Ten Miler, so if you're not racing and would like to help at a water station, let me know. Saturday afternoon/evening is going to be all part of our Dude's Weekend, which will be as gay as it sounds. Since the girls are racing the women's only 5k on Sunday, we need to have a night on the town. Maybe we'll go to Power Plant, Hard Rock, ESPN Zone, etc. Then Sunday is the girl's race and we need to go support them.

The weekend after that is Dreaded Druid Hills. It's a Saturday race, early in the am. If you're not racing, I am confident you'll all man a water station. It's one of two races that I enjoy helping out for each year. Then that evening we are thinking about going to the Orioles vs Nationals in DC.


Johnnie Cochran said...

Yeah son, the marathon is where it is at. Speaking of which, I should get new shoes.

RM said...

Yeah, especially as your mileage is getting up there and being more consistent, make sure you take care of your feet. You may even want to consider buying two pairs and alternating.