Wednesday, July 18, 2012

finding that sweet spot

Well, I had two blog drafts I typed up on my netbook (in between the Alaska and SF trips, like a quasi sister's marathon race report, and then something else) and like the latest title of this blog, "REAL LIFE" just got in the way. It's been so long since I used my netbook that I can't find the power cord (it's somewhere in the house...) so I might as well start a new one (I'm on a different laptop right now). I'll even throw some fun photos in for good measure!

Traveling took more out of me than anticipated. It was the ping-ponging myself across 3 or more time zones 6x in the span of a month (home to Vegas to home to Alaska to home to San Francisco to home, yes, home being Delaware now) and by the time I finished, my body was just confused and tired. I didn't feel like training much for the rest of that week (I came home 4th of July...on which day my brother proposed to his girlfriend, pictured below, far right. WELCOME TO THE FAMILY!!!).

And now I'm currently acting as head coach of Sandbagger Triathlete Enterprises. (That's a fancy way of saying I'm coaching myself now.) Really, I'm just trying to figure out how much time I can spend and am willing to spend on training. The confounding factors that determine this go beyond "how many hours per week, minus optimum sleep hours and work hours". I'm finding that work stress, life stress, and social commitments, along with current level of fitness, and how damn hot it is outside, all play a role in this. (It was much less "damn hot" when I was visiting San Francisco with all my girl cousins for the wedding...but damn, we look hot!)

I can't just train all day during a non-workday, like I used to. Because I'm not quite fit enough, the weather is ridiculously hot and humid (def not heat-acclimated like I used to be), and well, because I just don't want to. There are much more fun things to do than just train all day, and that is probably why I'm not a pro triathlete any more. Training all day isn't fun for me any more. Last week I got to see Magic Mike with the girls at work (following margaritas and shots of Patron), go to a BBQ in Philly, catch the COWBOY MONKEY RODEO (!!!), and had an obedience lesson with the Christmas puppy. Sorry, that's the cowboy monkey's dog, not our dog:

I missed 3hrs I had intended to train, but still logged in about 14.5, which is still my biggest week this year. But I'm not freaking out about it, because I'm trying to find a good balance. I'm trying to find that "sweet spot" on how much training I want to do/am able to do, and also that "sweet spot" of where I want to be fitness-wise. I can't shake the desire to want to be fast again, but I'm balancing that against how much work I'm willing (and able) to put into that, and how much I'm willing to sacrifice for that.

I want to get to the point where I'm happy with where I am, regarding fitness, speed, and not feeling like a fatty. I'm enjoying working, and I also have to balance not training so much that it compromises my performance at work. (If I'm too tired I have less tolerance for the "difficult patients.") And I also don't want to miss out on fun events with other people. My days of being a completely antisocial professional triathlete are gone. I had many years of saying "no, I can't go to (insert fun event), I have to train in the morning/afternoon/all day." This includes my earlier years as an age group triathlete in college!

That was a long ramble. I don't even know how many hours other age groupers with real jobs train each week. But that's the update for now. I can tell I'm getting fitter, although biking up hills is still hard (I can't tell if it's because my legs were tired from the hard run the day before, or if I'm just a fat ass) and biking down hills is still scary. For the most part I'm feeling pretty happy and healthy, if not slow.

Oh yeah. And I can't mention Magic Mike without a photo, can I? My favorite dance was the "It's Raining Men" one with trenchcoats and umbrellas. I had the giggles. Here ya go. You're welcome.


  1. "I don't even know how many hours other age groupers with real jobs train each week. "

    I train about 10 hours. But I'm in my 50s and slow.... :D That's my balance point though. I go lower in the winter when it's cold out and higher in the last two months before an Ironman. But I can't go higher for much longer without wrecking my body and having no life.

    Though right now I'm doing NOTHING thanks to a bike injury that gave me Post-Concussion Syndrome. It's frustrating and I hope I'll learn something from watching you come back to triathlon because I'm a bit scared right now.

    1. Oh no! It is scary coming back on the bike after my accident but I force myself to get out there and ride a hillier route once a week. I hit the brakes a lot more than I used to but each time it gets easier and a little less scary. Good luck with your recovery!

    2. I'm going for an Open Water Swim in about 5 min. Swimming doesn't seem to give me the headaches that biking does.

  2. As a slow triathlete who does it for fitness fun and because I can I train about 6 to 10 hours a week for sprint / Olympic distance races. That still makes me feel exhausted sometimes, but I don't have to sacrifice much in terms of socialising or friend (I still sacrifice a little though because I just am too tired sometimes and sleep beats wine!)

    1. Yes, I am finding myself going to bed earlier these days! Training + work stress = tiring! But worth it :) good luck this season!!