Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Valleys

            There are those mountaintop experiences – surpassing your goals and surprising yourself with what you can do.  There are also the low points – when things don’t come together as they should, when you struggle to hit watts or paces in training or competition, or when life just keeps hitting you with one obstacle/challenge after another.  There have certainly been a lot of mountaintop experiences in the last couple seasons of triathlon.  Now I’m struggling in the valley.
            Leading into the season, I felt like I was setting myself up really well with training in order to have another strong season and to keep improving.  That should always be the goal, right?  There were of course a lot of frustrations early on too.  Missed workouts when things didn’t work out the way I hoped.  Short naps interrupting trainer rides.  Life interruptions.  But I felt like I was heading in the right direction.
Don't let that smile fool you!
            Myles started sleeping through the night around 2 months old, and then would sometimes get up once – very manageable.  The week of Elkhart Lake, he started getting up multiple times a night, and recently it became 2-4 times a night.  One night recently it was about every hour.  Not cool, Myles.  Not cool.  On top of that, I came down sick the evening of the 4th of July.  I’m not talking a cold either.  My suspicion is that it may have been E Coli that I got from open water swimming, making for even greater misery, a little time off to recover, and then looking at my next race coming up in less than a week.
            Feeling like I just can’t catch a break, I need to reassess my goals and expectations for what should have been strong performances over these next few weeks - while also trying not to feel defeated before even toeing the start line.  There has been a lot of doubt and second-guessing.  I try to remind myself that my best performances in college were when the odds were against me and expectations and pressure had dropped.  I can’t expect something like that though.  It seems that a lot of my positive voices have fallen asleep.  Either way, it’s time to have some fun and adjust my mindset for these next races.  Even if it’s not my best performance, it should still be an enjoyable adventure.  Eventually I’ve got to come upon another mountain, right?

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