Marathon Week 15, HIM Week 1 Recap: You've Come a LONG Way, Baby

My stomach is killing me. (I'm actually up for this reason and because Kona had to potty.)

It was an interesting weekend. I was supposed to do my 2nd 20 miler, a kind of big deal since I never did the 1st one, but I ended up with some kind of stomach thing that's had me doubled over for 2 days. Bizarrely, oddly, strangely enough, though: this is the most comfortable I've felt about my level of fitness in years. It might have something to do with the fact that I'm at a weight I haven't seen in almost 2 years. Or it might just be experience. Either way, as I make the transition back to all three sports, I feel a keen advantage over any previous training year - something I've never felt in almost 4 years of training.

Even though I know I'm still undertrained for the marathon because I'm not running enough, I know that this year's 26.2 won't be as completely pulled out of my ass as Philly, because my overall fitness/endurance level is about 3 times what it was in November 2007.

I ended up training Tuesday, Friday and Monday. Tuesday, I managed to jump in with a Master's swim group and swim around 2k relatively easily without having been in a pool in almost 5 months. The lifeguard even told me I was pretty good. On Friday, I did yoga and a nutrition clinic and got told I looked great and didn't need as big a size as I thought. (P.S. - I also out-yoga'd a number of club members (if not all of them). Apparently, most triathletes are not even remotely flexible. As juvenile as it sounds, I was thrilled. I felt like Hey! We FINALLY found something at which Fatty can excel over the supremely fit yummy-looking people!)

Yesterday was rough. This morning is rough too. I was plagued (still am) by the stomach pains. Something we ate on Sunday morning had me laid up in bed all afternoon, and even with the attention and care of New Guy, I was still feeling pretty rough Monday. Though I'd planned my 20-miler on this day off (MLK, Jr. Day), I was having a hard time trying not to throw up or run to the nearest bed and clutch my knees to my chest. So I hit a spin class, knowing full well I may not make it through, but knowing that was a LOT less likely to give me GI issues than a long, long run and I could try to make it a brick.

Everything>something>nothing.

Not only did I make it through, I hit the ab class afterwards and finished off the mini-brick with a 1-mile run. And at one point I was really rocking out. It wasn't super-easy, but it felt REALLY good. I kept up with the rest of the class and even outrode some of them FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE. knew I was doing well when Hector grouched at me to add more gears. (Abs still sucked, but I'll never be good at abs.) In about 3 hours I'm going to TRY to run with the club.

And here's what's funny about this all.

One year ago, when I thought I wouldn't be able to swim with a Master's group? I was right. Now it's just humility. When Hector told me to add more gears? It was because I didn't know what I was doing. Now it's because I am capable of a LOT more and he knows I'm accidentally sandbagging. When I did a short run after a spin/ab class? I was huffing and walking a bit. Now I have the odd muscle twinge because I haven't been running and stretching enough, but I know how to manage the stiff-leggedness and cardiovascular demands and I don't walk until the run is over. When I thought about a group run? I felt like a total snail, an imposter even. Now I feel like, "there's going to be someone my pace, and if there isn't, they can suck it. I'll run alone."

Don't get me wrong - not all of this is from my own hard work. Some of it is because I'm not as sick as I was in 2007 or parts of 2008. But I'm finally seeing how much farther ahead I am. In 2006, I started training in summer. In 2007, I started training in March. In 2008, I started TRYING to train in January, but didn't really get going till February. And now, in 2009? I didn't "start" because I never took a "break." Yes, I had weekends or weeks where I didn't make 1/2 or 1/4 of my scheduled training, but I was still doing as much as I could every single week with no big strings of months or weeks off.

I've come a long way, baby.

Back to sleep with some Tums.

1 tidbits of wizdom:

Alili said...

I absolutely love the tone of your post. I can FEEL the confidence. Yay MAJ!

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