Rest, Power, and Possibility
Dear Izzy, Max, and Kate,
I took it easy this week. I rested Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday entirely and then went for a short swim on Wednesday. I kept it nice and easy – mostly using the pull buoy. Then on Thursday I went for a short ride during lunch. I wanted to ride about 40 minutes all small ring with no real efforts. After all, I’m still recovering from what was a very difficult race considering the heat and terrain. The ride didn’t feel great, but was about what I expected. My head and my legs said yes, my heart, lungs, and stomach still said no. Then on Friday I did another short 1000 yard swim. It felt better than Wednesday’s swim.
Your body has to absorb the training and abuse of racing you put it through. It took me a few years, injuries, and illnesses to learn that. More isn’t always better – in fact, it seldom is both triathlon and life in general. I enjoyed an easy week.
Yesterday morning I rode 25 miles and felt great for about 15 of them, then Toughman Alabama reared it head again. Residual fatigue still lingering.
But my head is already asking for what’s next. As of today, I think what’s next is the Huntsville Marathon in December. I was 27 the last time I ran a full marathon. I think 40 is a suitable age for another run at it. I used to think that one marathon was plenty for a lifetime for me, but the thought of another has been in the back of my mind since 2002. This time I plan to actually train and see what I can do. Last time, when I was younger, I literally went and ran 26.2 on about 10 weeks per mile of running. I made it in 4:30, but suffered big time. I’ve always wondered what I can do on a real training schedule.
When I got home from my own ride yesterday morning you and I went for a 20 minute ride and then a 1.5 mile run together Izzy.
You’re training for your triathlon in two weeks. It will be your 4th. I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t admit to feeling prideful when watching you swim, bike, and run. I’ve never asked you to do it, you’ve just grown up with the sport. I’m proud to have influenced you in something positive and healthy like triathlon. It’s a sport where you can race against yourself and father time as long as you want. You’ve been asking for years when you can do a “grown up” race instead of a kid race. Your 10 now, so we’ve agreed that next summer you can move up to adult super sprint races if you want to.
You’re doing great with swimming – having now moved into a higher echelon of year round swimming with Excel Aquatics. It won’t be long before you’re swimming with me. I pick you up from practice everyday and get to watch you last 30 minutes of your practice. I marvel at your endurance and how fast you’re getting.
We met your teacher a few nights ago and she gave us your TCAP scores from last year. We werent surprised to see that you ACED the test and are “advanced” in every subject. I’m not sure I influenced that area of your life. 🙂
I‘ll never forget the walk we took on the beach together this summer, early one morning, discussing swimming, what scholarships are, good colleges and great colleges, the importance of being a “student-athlete” instead of just one or the other, and ultimately the fact that all those decisions are in your hands – with mommy and I here to help guide you and support.
I’m proud you’re my kid. I’ll love you regardless of what you choose to do athletically and as a possible career in your life. But mornings like yesterday, I can’t help but imagine you on the podium at Ironman Kona someday. Maybe? You can be anything you want. The power and possibility of that overwhelms me as your dad. Sometimes I wonder how much of that is also left in me.
I love you,