What Was I Thinking? (Part 2, Training)

I loved the carb-loading part of training. I miss the carb-loading, but not the training.

All triathletes must train for the Big Day.  I know that now.

Supposed Friend could have helped me with that little nugget of wisdom, but she failed to mention it.

I’m smart, so I figured out that I needed to prepare myself both physically and mentally for the first athletic competition I had been in since my 6th grade kickball tournament, the memories of which still sting almost as much as the ball that took me out of play by winging the right side of my face. Contrary to popular belief, there IS crying in kickball.

As if my hair do and polka dot scarf aren’t reasons enough for the entire class to tease me, now I have to walk around with a giant kick-ball hickey on my face. I hate sports.

Mental Training

  • Daily positive affirmations: “I can accomplish any goal I set.” “I am strong, I am invincible, I am delusional.” “People’s laughter will fill me with energy.” “Passing gas will propel me forward.”
  • Set realistic goals: I simply wanted to complete the race without the assistance of a wheelchair, gurney, or jaws of life. I also wanted to finish within 24 hours. (HINT: remember these goals. They will be important later in the story–like when I actually tell it.)
  • Visualization: I put a picture of a woman triathlete on my refrigerator so that every time I was tempted to eat something not healthy, I felt really guilty.

    I can be her. I can do what she can do. I can only lift my bicycle like that if I finish that leftover mac and cheese before I go to bed.

Physical Training

The race was held in June and I signed up in February. I live in a place where winter lasts until at least March or April. I also live in a place where pools are either for children going to school or for people interested in “Wellness Center” memberships. I didn’t fall into either category at that time.

  • Swimming: I hate swimming. Getting my face wet and possibly drowning annoy me. I can swim if I must. My fastest stoke is the side-stoke. I can cut through the water like an ailing, disoriented turtle.  When I get tired, I can do a fairly decent back float with a flutter kick that will keep me afloat and nearly stationary, which is odd, given all the fluttering and kicking. Our local high school opened up their pool for “Public Swim” every Sunday for one hour during March and April. I went about four times. After that, I focused my training on running, biking, and mind games.  I was going to need a very cooperative dolphin if I wanted to complete the swimming potion of the race. And that seemed unlikely.

    I was totally willing to pay their entry fee, but there was something in the fine print about one swimmer per lane. Drats!

  • Biking: It’s hard to ride in snow, slush, wind, rain, sun, heat, humidity, morning, or afternoon. I didn’t get much time “on the seat” as my fellow triathletes call it. I rode the bike course to familiarize myself with it. Man, it was hilly and windy. Both times. I huffed and I puffed and I thought, “This is WAY more than 10 freaking miles!” Then I got in my car and clocked it. It was about 10 miles. So I had my mechanic check my odometer.  Oh well. Maybe they would cancel the bike ride due to excessive hills.

    Since the bike ride was longer than I anticipated, I equipped  my bike with basic safety features. The extra weight might slow me down, but I would  save time by not having to stop for pee-breaks. I know. I thought of everything!

  • Running: I had been running jogging for a couple of years and loved it. A four mile jog was perfect for me, so I wasn’t worried about a mere 3 miles at the end of the race. I didn’t think about the swimming or the biking that preceded the run. To me, they were separate events. Just in case, I embarked on several longer jaunts: 4.5 miles. I was so ready.
  • Strength Training: I lifted 20-pound free-weights (10 lbs. for each arm) 3 times a week for about 20 minutes and did 200 sit-ups a day. I wanted to look smokin’ hot on race day…

    How could people look at me in my triathlete suit and not be in total awe?

I was as ready as I would ever be for the race of my life.

Stay with me. The day of the race is coming up.

The officials in charge have inspected the venues. There’s nothing left to do but take a deep breath and hope those carbs kick in.

~ by Lorna's Voice on September 26, 2012.

30 Responses to “What Was I Thinking? (Part 2, Training)”

  1. 🙂 🙂

  2. haha – Frick and Frack … or … Laurel and Hardy … or some such two. lol

  3. Sounds like we were equally qualified to be in this race. Only one of us had the sense to stay home and eat chips and the other had the nonsense to enter it and entertain the other. We make a perfect pair, don’t we? 😉

  4. hahaha … I’m so glad I’m reading these one after another. I am getting the full impact of your – no pain no gain physical training. I am not athletic so swimming would have me under water instantly and biking would have me down on my rear before I could get down my driveway. I must be on two feet with level ground in order to exert sweat. LATELY – holding that bag of chips is strenuous … and … tastier. lolol
    Huggies ….

  5. Calm down, Gayle. 🙂 Remember, I’m here writing about it and the only thing wrong with me is…well, let’s not go there. Let’s just say that no rescue squads were were involved.

  6. Oh, gosh…this HSP is already beginning to hyperventilate just thinking about what you’re going to be doing to yourself! Did not like the fact that you said “remember these goals”…ok…no wheelchairs, gurneys or jaws of life and finish within 24 hours…something tells me this will not end well…

  7. Sara, I was in my 40s and trying to prove I was still alive. I didn’t know that this stupid race would almost kill me! 🙂

  8. Yeah, who comes up with these things? 🙂

  9. I hope that’s a good thing! 😉

  10. “They will be important later in the story–like when I actually tell it.” … hehe. No one can not tell a story like you, Lorna.

  11. Hysterical, as usual. I love the retrofitted bike… 🙂

  12. Really, what WERE you thinking?! I have no interest in pushing my body to its limits. I don’t feel empowered by it and I usually get my fill of endorphins by taking a simple walk around the block. I’m almost afraid to read about the day of the race, but at the same time I can hardly wait.

  13. You’re such an optimist! I am, too. That’s why I entered the race. What I’m not is a realist… 😉

  14. So far so good. At the moment I’m still clinging on to the hope that you did really really well in the triathlon. There is nothing so far to make me think otherwise.

  15. Thanks so much! I certainly have more than my fair share of fun around here! 🙂

  16. Let’s just say that all my “training” yielded the results that one would expect. 😉

  17. I can’t wait for the next post… love your blog gonna follow…

  18. Where were you 12 years ago when I needed a coach with a good eye for rules and a couple of dolphins? 😉

  19. I’ve got to hand it to you Lorna, your pre-race training regimen is so very much unlike all the others. I suppose that is why you are such a stand-out. Love the daily affirmations! I’m sure this method will result in a most Lorna-like outcome; I can’t wait to read all about it…

  20. Lorna, you outdid yourself with those pictures. Absolutely hilarious!

    I know it’s too late but you might want to check the official book of rules for triathlons. To wit: Rule 27.a.1 sub-section 12 which states “Only one HUMAN swimmer per lane allowed.” So you see, Flipper and Flopper were perfectly legal.

  21. Okay, so I know this out-of-work mechanic/plumber who has just a slight drinking problem…

  22. I read Louise Hay’s book, You Can Heal Your Life, but I think I might have skipped a few chapters… 😉

  23. Yeah, right. Who knew? But I had already sent in my 10 bucks and danged if I was going to forfeit that load of cash. So I pretty much faked it… 😐

  24. Lies! They say you never forget, but your do. Your forget how hard it is to pump your sorry butt up all those hills against the wind!

  25. Ha! I’m not that far behind you, really… 😉

  26. At least you can swim, I do a pretty decent imitation of a brick in water.

  27. Sounds like a sound training program to me–since I hate swimming and will sink even when trying to stay afloat. Biking I could probably do but I’d need some practice. Oh wait, isn’t that the sport where once you learn you just get on the bike and go like sixty once again???

  28. Wait. You need to do physical training too? Damn.

  29. Love those affirmations! So fun.

  30. I want one of those toilet bikes to put in the front yard! My neighbors would love it.

Silence can be just what the doctor ordered. You know I'm a doctor, right?

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