Stumbling into a New Adventure

Well, I’m injured again. As I write this, it’s been three and a half weeks since I’ve run. I don’t like it. I’m not happy. The problem is my feet. Both of them but mostly the right. I’m not sure what caused it. I think it was wearing climbing shoes a lot, and then they got a lot worse after a big hike to summit Alta Mountain. I feel like I’m getting slowly better but it’s hard to tell and frustrating.

But dauntless and determined, I am beginning my next adventure anyway. I have hired a coach and I am training for a full Ironman. I signed up for Ironman Santa Rosa, which is on July 25th, 2020. For those who don’t know, and Ironman is a triathlon that consists of swimming 2.4 miles, cycling 112 miles, and then running 26.2 miles. For a total of 140.6 miles, for which you are given a total of 17 hours, with various cut offs for the swim and the bike legs.

It’s funny, while I’m sure it will be a huge challenge and I will need to work as hard as I’ve ever worked, my experience at the Volcanic 50k has made me realize that long athletic challenges are just something I can do. I’m not afraid. Not yet anyway. I feel confident that I can get my body to where it needs to be, and then on race day I can just keep going until I’m done.

When I did the Atlantic City half-Ironman back in September of 2017, two years ago now, I was scared and daunted and apprehensive and whatever other words for “oh shit” you can imagine. It took me 6:52, I think, to complete the flat, inviting-but-exposed course in warm humid weather. So I figure a full, if I’m well-prepared, will take me a bit longer than twice that time. So maybe 15 hours. But even if 16 or 16:59:59, I feel capable of just keeping myself going to the end.

So I’m excited. I’m not scared yet but I expect to be as the time comes. And I am definitely going to be starting from scratch; with this injury, I will be at an absolute rock bottom in terms of running fitness. But I can build. I’ve been in the gym, on the elliptical, and on the bike. My road bike is still in the shop, but I’ve been putting miles on my commuter bike to stay somewhat fit. And lifting.

It’s frustrating to be hurt, but exciting to be setting an intention of doing something hard. And I achieve my goals. I always have. So I think this one will be no different. It’s just going to take dedication.