Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Amazed (in a stupid kinda way)

I came off another 13 hour training week, and I've had time to think. Those longer rides and runs have a way of providing those opportunities. I find myself wishing that I had been in this kind of shape before the early season half Ironmans. A learning experience, certainly, but that's not what I've been thinking about.

The long stuff that I have been doing has been hard. I'm not surprised that its hard. I remember that first 14 mile run vividly. I just didn't expect "hard" to come so soon. There are these humps that have to be gotten over, at 65 miles on the bike, and 9 miles on the run. The humps have left me wondering, how will I ever go the distance.

This, in turn, has left me pondering the training for my last Ironman. Have I already forgotten the sweat, toil, and tears that went into that event? Have I forgotten the magnitude of the event? Am I taking all this for granted?

In retrospect, I can still see myself riding the wave of euphoria each and every day in my training. I mean, I did 6(!) 100 mile bike rides in preparation for Ironman Florida. The newness of Ironman and Ironman training carried me through the day. I think a lot of the aspects of that amazing day, and the training it took to get there, is still settling in, and in many ways, this second Ironman is part of the process. I view this as the true test of the Ironman spirit.

You can ride the endorphin high through your longest event the first time, and you will indeed be a marathoner/Ironman/ultra(wo)man, and nobody will ever be able to take that away from you. However, if you want to test your mettle, go back and do it again, knowing what you know now. It's a whole nutha kind of test.

I read something interesting in this month's issue of Triathlete Magazine that rang so true with me. I'm looking at this Ironman as a last hurrah for a while. Next year is going to be a serzly toned down year for me. Amanda Lovato said that to her, the most important thing is keeping it fun. That's something I can understand.

OK! Enough! It's time for the Great Monkey Butt giveaway! We'll do the multi- entry dealio. If you comment on this post, you get one entry. If you post it on Facebook, two. If you put it on your blog, three, and if you tweet it, four. I'll take your word for it that you are and will do each of these things. I do not plan to check up on you! I will be giving away some regular and the femme version of Anti-Monkey Butt Powder to two of my readers. How about we do the drawing this weekend (Sunday!).

Annnnnd, if you want a chance at a Garmin 310XT, DC Rainmaker is giving one away at his blog! Head on over and get your entry in!

Let's have a great week, y'all!

Wes

23 comments:

Molly said...

It's good to see your thoughts about doing it the 2nd time around...as I face wondering about signing up again and do I want to do all that training again. I can see how it would be different the next round with the initial excitement perhaps dimmed. Keep your head down and keep up the good work as we have a date in November - I'm officially a wetsuit peeler for your race!

Lisa said...

Interesting perspective on doing it a second time around. I'll be following your training troughts...

Sign me up for some anti-monkey butt. Cuz nobody likes monkey butt!

challenges2010 said...

That perspective is the same in weight loss. I knew how hard it was the first time and it kept me from getting back at it for awhile. Now I'm trying to use it to never put it back on!

Lauren said...

Pick me - I'm doing all four! Otherwise, where the heck do I buy this stuff, my CVS & Walgreens looked dumbfounded when I finally asked

"Do you have anti-monkey butt powder...>

Steph Bachman said...

I've not even completed IM #1 and Doug and I are already talking about how little training we think it might take for the next one. : )

Jon Gilchrist said...

amazing how those memories tend to slide away from us...isn't it? Thanks for sharing...we Do tend to forget...

Stuart said...

Interesting thoughts I too am finding that I have forgotten what it took, when people asked me how you run 50k or 50m I just say it's 20 miles then one at a time and in so many ways the first 20 is the hardest...weird and thought provoking

JV said...

I am going to remember what u said... That the first time endorphin high will get me through!

Duane said...

Hey! Sign me up!

Sarah said...

So glad you posted this. Because I believe that once all the luster is gone, it comes down to grit, sweat and determination. And that it should be fun, and when it isn't fun anymore, it's time to take a few steps back. I've seen others do that and always wondered how they could walk away for a bit. Now I get it ;). I'm so insanely proud of you, and I will try to stay in shape so I can ride an hour or two with you :) I know that you can do this the second time around and that it's going to be a BIG FALL SEASON for you, dude.

Julie said...

Hi Wes,
I loved this post! It has me thinking and looking back to some of my first races. I have a ten mile race coming up in September. I ran the same race last year for the first time. I did really well....just ran it with no goal other than to finish:) I am scared to death for this year because I want to finish with a faster time than last year. I pray to God that I can pull it off:)

I will leave the Monkey Butt stuff for your Tri friends but I will post it on my blog:)

Have a wonderful week Wes!

Jess said...

I agree that going back and doing an event the second time is way more challenging. I didn't know what I was getting into during my first marathon. I just rode the high and did my training. I've been reluctant to sign up for a second one because I know what it takes now and I'm not ready to make that jump yet.

tristatecruisers said...

I've been wanting to try this and i hope i win. Just gotta love the name "monkey butt." :)

marci
tristatecruisers at yahoo dot com

tristatecruisers said...

Shared this on FB :)

marci
tristatecruisers at yahoo dot com

Kim said...

monkey butt! yes! gimme gimme gimme!

way to get over those big training humps wes. hehehe i just wanted to say hump.

Karen said...

Am I too late?

Karen said...

ahem... so I tweeted right and that posts to facebook.... so does that count as two? ;)

Karen said...

...oh and my tweets go into my blog... so does that count as a full house ;) HA HA HA... and it was like one entry per comment too wasn't it...

Only kidding... Now about your blog... so I'm doing my first and possibly ONLY century ride this weeekend before my race in 7 weeks... you did 6... Wholly CRAP ... now I'm worried :O .... interesting perspective though - thanks for sharing :)

Michelle said...

Interesting to hear your perspective the second time around. I'll remember this if I ever get around to doing a first!

Scott Keeps Running said...

"if you want to test your mettle, go back and do it again"

Right on.

Makita said...

No stranger to hard work and a lot of sweat ... but keeping it fun and enjoying oneself is the ultimate goal. :)

Tea said...

Wes-Everything you said really resonates with me. Like Molly said, I keep wondering if I *want* to go through it again. I know I can do it, but do I *want* to.

And of course, don't pee in your wetsuit, I'd hate to see Molly get splashed.

Joe said...

Wes, a terrific post.

So many people do One. And then, check, that's off the list.

The real test is to find a way to do it again.

Now, the Full IM is such a colossal test, I'd give it to anyone who does just the One. Never a question to me.

Yet, having decided to to IMAZ as you have, I salute you particularly. Good reflection on just what it will take.