Tuesday, March 21, 2017

What will be my next adventure?

What's next?
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about what’s next for me, my training, my running, my multisport, my whatever I choose as my next adventure.

I’m discouraged that my running has been anything but fast lately. A lot of that is for a good reason: I have been doing a lot of runs in the past year with my husband, who is slower than me. If I have to choose between a speed session and a run with him, I choose him, every time. I’m trying to get him fully over to the dark side and become A Runner.

I track my workouts on DailyMile, and it keeps a top-five list of fastest runs and longest runs. Depressingly, I noticed that I have only run three times since March 2016 at a pace faster than 9 minutes per mile. (And one of those times was being dragged around the neighborhood for 2 miles by my lab mix, so that barely counts.) When I was considering building off my Gasparilla Ultra Challenge weekend for a spring marathon, my ultimate reason against it was that if I commit to a marathon I want to try for a PR, and I am nowhere near PR shape.

So, yeah. Speed isn’t my strong suit right now.

But here’s the thing… the run has always been the part of triathlon I have sucked the least at. I’m a mid-pack swimmer at best, and an overall bad cyclist. And when I eventually do start building back, I’ve got a long way to go. I’ve gotten on my bike twice this year; the last time I did a real bike workout and not just a warmup for lifting weights was July. JULY! Swimming is a similar story: I swam once in December after most of the summer off, after a DNF and a DNS at swimming events.

Yeah, I was having some health problems over the summer that manifested as anxiety, and had to get out of the pool multiple times because of panic attacks. I’m in a much better place now, seeing a new doctor, taking new medications, and on a completely different diet. It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve built from nothing, either. I started swimming again six years ago, having not swum a single lap since freshman year of high school. I finished my first triathlon with the 10th slowest swim time of the entire field, spending part of the race legitimately afraid I was going to die, and worked my way up to MOP and consistently improving pool times. Although I’m a terrible cyclist, I know that consistently getting out there on the roads makes me a bit less terrible, and have seen incremental improvements in speed and bike-handling skills from season to season.

I think I need to decide if I want to spend my precious free time trying to improve at things I’m not really good at, or try something else (knowing I probably won’t be good at that, either). I’d like to start playing tennis again, take a ballet class again, finally try indoor rock climbing, maybe do something insane like Krav Maga or at least the occasional self-defense class. I’ve got pesky time-suckers in my life like a full-time job, a commute, a husband, a need to eat healthy meals three times a day, and a need to sleep occasionally. I don’t have money to blow on a new smart bike trainer. And although I refuse to live in fear, I still have to be careful of things like running alone on dark trails.

I guess that was a really long way of saying "I don't know what's next." Most definitely running. Probably other stuff. I don't know yet. But I'll figure it out eventually.

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