Monday, August 12, 2013

IM Tremblant Mantras

So, here I am six days out from what I consider the biggest race of my 'tri life.' I did qualify for and race the 70.3 WC in Vegas last year, but this race, I feel, has bigger implications. If I do well at IMMT I'll have a good shot at getting to Kona, which has been a long term goal of mine.

At the start of this year I was fortunate enough to be selected by Steve Johnson of Darkhorse Multisport to be a sponsored athlete, receiving free coaching for the year. Steve has given me lots of workouts that I doubted I could actually do. However, I was able to get through virtually all of what I was asked to do, only falling short on my prescribed #'s a couple of times. I've swam more in the first seven months than I swam all of last year. I've done more high intensity runs and bikes than in the past, and I feel that my fitness has improved. 

Going into Tremblant I have high expectations. When I signed up for this race last year my goal was to qualify for Kona. I know that I wouldn't have trained as hard had I not been associated with Steve. As a result, I feel that I'm ready to excel and have a great race. I've been very consistent in my training this year, averaging 12 hours per week, which has translated into 12k yards of swimming, 110 miles of biking, and 30 miles of running. At the start of the year I had a strong swim focus, and was getting in 4-5 swims and 15-16,000 yards a week. As the season progressed, those swim numbers dropped a bit as my bike and run mileage increased.

My IM build comprised of about six big weeks where I hit around 17-21 hours of training, getting a high of 281 miles on the bike, 21,000 yards in the pool, and 45 miles of running (not all in the same week, though). These weeks were hard on my new family, as most of these weeks were comprised of a Saturday swim and 5+ hour ride and a Sunday bike or swim followed by a long run. Katie wasn't psyched (even remotely) about these long training days, but allowed me to put in the time, and I thank her a great deal for being at home with our little buddy, Jackson!

As I look at how the race will shape up I know there will be some rough patches where I'm not feeling that great, and may even doubt myself. Over the past week or two I've been thinking of the consistent training over the past seven months, which leads into mantra #1: TRUST THE TRAINING. Steve knows his stuff, and I need to trust the numbers I will be hitting in the race - I know they are feasible. I know there will be times during the race where I may see someone pass me or be well ahead of me at a turnaround. I can't make foolish mistakes like going over my wattage on the bike or pace on the run. This leads to mantra #2: PATIENCE PAYS. It's a long day, and if I hit the numbers I am capable of (and don't do anything stupid) I should finish near the top of my AG. I'll be saying these two phrases to myself on race day, especially when I might be in a 'spot of bother.' I've put in the time and volume, or, as Quentin Cassidy would say, 'Miles of trials, and trials of miles.' I just need to be smart on race day and good things will happen.

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