Strong Mind – Strong Body

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What happens when you look at your training schedule and the instructions of the ride are as follows: “Ride how you feel.” No specific numbers to try and target. No goals to direct your workout. Just ride how you feel. Why are those types of workouts often the most challenging for athletes?? Why do hard workouts with intense intervals that make you push and push often feel “easier” than light workouts where you are just in cruise control and have no targets other than just to “ride how you feel”?

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Bright Lights, Big City, and a Disqualification…

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July 30th 2017 marked two events in my life. First and most importantly, this date marked my 12th year wedding anniversary with my awesome husband. And secondly this date brought on the Boston Triathlon. This race was a big stage — where the who’s who on the local triathlon scene would be competing. This was a big race for me, where I could see how I could compete with the big guns.   I love these types of races. No one would expect much from me. I could only surprise people. I was excited to see how this mother of three could compete against these big time local elites and pros.

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Cruising Through Life

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I realized this past week that I haven’t written a blog entry since the cold, dark days of January. Yes, life has been very busy with being a mom, a teacher, a coach, and my training. But other factors have been at play as well. I feel like I’ve been cruising through life. My kids are happy (most of the time) and healthy, my jobs have kept me feeling productive and busy, and my training and racing have been quite smooth (knock on wood). In fact, I haven’t felt like I have had a “blog-worthy experience” in quite some time.

Until this weekend…. I was competing in the Mont Tremblant 70.3 triathlon.  My goal for this season was to use Mont Tremblant 70.3 as my qualifier for the 70.3 World championship race in Chattanooga. I have competed in 70.3 World’s in the past, but not since 2007. I’ve qualified for it the past couple of years, but I wasn’t about to plan a family trip to Australia OR leave the family behind for a week while I took a trip to Australia to compete in a triathlon. It just didn’t seem right!! So since this race finally moved back to the USA, this was my chance to go back to this world-class affair. No ironmans for me this year. I was going to see how I could do in my age group at 70.3 Worlds. This was my target for the season.

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Really, It Is All About the Journey: Lessons Learned from Trainer Road

Winter in New England… It’s cold. It’s unpredictable. It’s long. It can be a roller coaster ride full of jubilation at the first picturesque snowfall to gloomiimg_9406ness over dismal cold days full of hibernation and darkness. Most of my workouts have shifted to being inside on stationary pieces of equipment, which seem to provide much space for rumination. Dreaming of bike rides outside and summer runs in tank tops, I find myself thinking about what lies ahead and how I can get to where I want to be. And more importantly in the meantime, how I can make the best of every day.

Enter my motivating source throughout the dismal winter months: Trainer Road. Trainer Road and I have a quintessential love / hate relationship – for those who are familiar with the program, I’m sure you can relate.   You love it because it pushes you so hard and you hate it because it pushes you so hard. This is why I find it such a valuable training tool. It forces you to push beyond what you ever thought was manageable.

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Kupa’a

 

It’s my 2 year old’s new favorite word. And I have decided that it will be the name of our next dog. Kupa’a – the theme of this year’s Ironman World Championships in Kona. Kupa’a is a Hawaiian term meaning steadfast, firm, and committed. This word is imprinted on my souvenir sweatshirt, on my race poster, and on my hefty finisher’s medal. It will forever remind me of the day, the journey and the commitment I made to take all of this on. I undertook this journey for two primary reasons: to commemorate my 40th birthday and to prove to myself that I could accomplish this feat.

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The Upside of Adversity

 

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I have been ruminating over a couple of ideas for blog entries for the past month, depicting my path to Kona.   I had notes jotted down describing various hurdles and highlights I’ve encountered during this journey. The blog entry (which I had already proudly entitled: “One eye on Kona, One eye on the road”) was to describe how I handled training and preparing for this race, which held so many question marks and so many unknowns. How could I do? How would I do? Could I possibly compete? Or do I just race for the “experience of racing Kona”? With training, coaching, teaching, and spending time with my family, I haven’t had too much time to write these past few weeks, so I planned to assimilate my thoughts while on the plane to Hawaii. That was my plan. Continue Reading

Training for a Victory Lap?!

IMG_1476“So how’s the training for Kona going?” Each and every time I get this question, I pause, a bit unsure of how to craft an accurate response. Physically the training has been going as well as can be expected. My body has sent out a few warning signs that maybe it isn’t too keen on training for another ironman right now, but I’ve been able to take care of myself pretty well and stay healthy. In training, I’ve been feeling relatively strong on the bike and consistent on the run. My swimming is “ehh” as it has been for a while, but you can’t be feeling great in every discipline when training for an ironman. Something has got to give. So you would think the question posed at the outset of this post would evoke a positive response, as physically I feel like I’m in a good spot. My hesitation arises from my mindset. My mental game. This is the area where I feel a bit unsettled. A bit uncertain of where I’m at. This unsettled feeling stems from the fact that I’m not quite certain of what I’m trying to accomplish when I toe that starting line in Kailua Bay.

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