Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Off-Season Ramblings: What I'm Upto, Where I'm Headed in 2014

Been a long time since I’ve invaded this space…

Much of that has to do with the inherent lack of time that I’ve had since the last time I wrote. The training from John has definitely kept me busy as I start heading into the 2014 racing season. Also, we produced our last three races of 2013 and are pulling things together to get the store open for March 1st. So you’ll forgive me if I haven’t been as detailed as I might otherwise be.

Speaking of the 2014 racing schedule, things are really starting to fall into place. As I mentioned in my previous posting, John and I are taking the long view to my attack on a Kona slot. I’m simply not there yet. And so attempting a 2014 Kona qualification would be simply a fool’s errand.

Instead, we are looking at a two-year approach. This year will focus on my weaknesses. My biggest hurdle is myself; mentally, staying committed, staying in the uncomfortable zone of pushing hard when the going gets tough. Yes, I’ve suffered in races; hell, you’ve heard it here before. But having that mental ability to stay laser focused when all things are screaming don’t.

My other two weaknesses are the swim (still) and finishing the run strong. I’ve had some great front-half runs but I’ve never closed a race quite the way I’ve wanted to. There’s two reasons for that: not staying committed to the swim to make the improvements necessary to it, and not having the run experience in order to trust it.

That changes this year. The 2014 racing schedule includes a lot of things that are different, all with the mindset of improvement.

January 18th, 2014: Charleston Marathon
A marathon, you ask? Well, I’ve only run one of them. And I’d like to run one of them at least decently, and not on a mere 6 weeks of training. So if you’ve been following my Twitter and Strava feeds…this is what all that running is for!

April 5-6, 2014: Tour of the Battenkill
My climbing on the bike last year was pathetic. There’s no other excuse for it. I simply didn’t have the same biking legs when the road started to pitch vertically. So, what better way to improve it than to go into the greatest one-day classic America has that features 6000’ of climbing over 65 miles with plenty of dirt roads to go along with it?

April 26, 2014: HITS Marble Falls 140.6
This will be attempt #2 at 140.6 racing. This is part racing, and part market research to see how HITS is doing. I certainly hope for them to do well; after all, the market is better with competition.  But it’ll also be a good, hard, hot challenge, which is what is most likely for when I decide to make my assault on WTC. *hint on 2015 schedule planning*

June 9, 2014: White Mountains Triathlon
You may recall me calling this the hardest, dumbest race I’ve ever done. I’m also a glutton for punishment.

This is all I can say for now. I’ve got to consult with John more to figure out the remainder of the schedule. Will it make sense for me to do more long-course racing? Should I instead focus on short, fast, intense efforts to try and take that speed to the long-course level? That’s what we’re going to find out.

I’m also planning on entering a swim meet for the first time…ever. If you’re going to get fast in the water, you best learn how to suffer. And how better to suffer than by racing? Nothing hurts more than swimming hard. Nothing.

In all, I’m excited to see where this next step in the process heads. It’s been a joy to get to where I am now, and really stoked to see where it heads to.

1 comment:

Jamie said...

Swim meets are like a whole different planet. You realize how crappy 99% of triathletes are in the swim.