Perspective…

Perspective can be a funny thing, can’t it? I’ve been appreciating it these past few weeks…

After our most recent endurance ride (done on the computrainer as a group, with the focus on maintaining race wattage for increasing lengths of time), I remember thinking “man, am I out of shape!” as I was strapping on my knee brace and running shoes to shuffle out approx 4 km’s on the treadmill after 94 km’s on the bike.  In context, I was thinking that I still have SO much further to go in the next several months.

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But then I gave my head a shake and had a good chuckle.  Yeah – I must be out of shape, eh?  Our shorter endurance rides now are the longs ones we did last year when training for the half-iron distance, and we’re still increasing.  And I easily held my wattage and had a comfortable ride.  I need to keep it all in perspective and trust my training – I’m building.

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Unless it’s an endurance ride week, my Saturday mornings start early and are spent on my treadmill, and then in a flow and restore yoga class. Man alive, the long runs are really kicking my ass right now.  I don’t remember them being this draining while training for the marathon.  I need to be kind to myself and respect that I’m now training 3 sports, not just one.  I’m getting my ass kicked, but I’m recovering and I keep moving forward.

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Last week we completed our mid-season time-trial (10 mile flat), and I managed to hit the wattage I got at the end of last year – 212 average watts.  Darn it – I didn’t beat it! I need to keep it all in perspective – I’m stronger now and will keep working it.  I still have one more time trial to go in a couple of months to really be able to see what difference a year can make.

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I am feeling strong on the bike.  If only I wasn’t still so damn heavy – weight loss is free speed on the bike.  But I need to be patient with myself – I’m doing what I can towards this goal.  And I need to remain friends with my body through this process, not start thinking of it as the enemy.  I need to be kind to my body – it’s having some struggles.

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Life is busy at the moment – it’s the end of the semester for my teaching gig, conferences and travel are coming up, and there is stress.  But when I think back to this time last year – I let exercise and self-care go to focus on work, and this year it is more important to me to get my training session in (or like tonight, to hang out with my kids and watch The Little Mermaid for the 187th time) than to break myself over work.  The question “what’s important NOW?” has been a real gift and keeps me grounded (thanks to my good buddy for sharing this with me).

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Sometimes it means coming home from work and changing out of my professional looking stuff and into a tri kit for supper, baths and bedtimes. Total dork – perhaps – but at least the comfort of sweat pants doesn’t lull me into skipping my ride that evening!

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And when I turned 40 last month, my neighbour let me borrow some of her perspective – while I might have just been scraping through as someone in my 30’s, there is a whole new bar set now.  And hey, I’m doing pretty well for someone who is 40! 😉

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