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Thursday, December 10, 2015

I made It, I SHOULD be happy!

The picture above was taken kind of early in the morning, about 45 minutes until my big race.  As usual, my stomach was in knots, & I was dreading the first triathlon event...the swim. I never even swam the full amount I'd  be swimming until the day of the race.  Technically I had a year to train for this baby, so you'd think I would've been feeling pretty well prepared. But the training that started out with a bang,  fizzled toward the end when I realized just how many hours away from my family it would take to train really well.

 It's been a dream to do an Ironman distance for some years now.  I remember watching the Ironman on TV with my dad when I was younger, & seeing people after hours & hours out on the course coming into the finish dead tired, legs buckling, but happy.  For some weird reason that appeals to me.  I'm not crazy enough to do a full Ironman right off the bat though, this time I did the half Ironman distance.

Anyway, the race didn't turn out quite as planned, & they never quite do.  My friend who I had originally signed up with, wasn't able to do it for health reasons.  I always have a buddy, (friend or husband), in it with me.  So no one to grumble with, no one to encourage me or vice versa.  Even though I don't totally always stay with a partner throughout a whole race, it's nice to catch each other on the course & commiserate.  So this was just me.  Me talking to myself, me telling myself I am strong, me praying.

The weird thing is, I felt strong through out the whole race. I wasn't super speedy, but over all I felt good.  I didn't even have my usual bouts of cussing(a miracle in itself).  I was expecting it to be really hard for me, but I talked myself through it.  I talked to God a lot(you have many hours for that out on the course).  I'm so grateful I was able to make it!

But there is part of me that is so bothered by my overall time, the perfectionism seeped in, & sucked out some of my joy.  There was some confusion with the running course being not labeled well, & people telling me that you are supposed to do 2 loops, someone else told me 2 1/2, I also heard 3.  So I did what I thought was the correct amount, but it left me wondering if I over ran the course a bit? If other people were confused too(it seemed like it) & if they didn't run the full amount?  Not that I thought I was going to get an elite runners time, I was actually just feeling accomplished that I did it, then I looked up my score.  Probably shouldn't have looked! Anyway, I don't like it when I let little things eat at me that don't matter, I need to just focus on the fact that I reached a goal, & feel good about that

The thing that I realize, doing long races like this, is that I am strong.  This body I spent so many years hating, & trying to punish for not being what I thought it should be, is the one that keeps going & get's me to the finish line.  I am grateful for it, & that I'm getting more accepting of myself.

So, a really cool thing is that my 11 year old Sage did her first mini triathlon the day after my race. She did awesome!  She's not a swimmer & looked really worried as she tried to practice a bit in the lake before the race.  The water is like ice, & quite a shock when you have to put your face in.  When they started the race, I was so nervous for her, because I knew she was out of her element in the swim.  She pushed herself & got through it.  So proud of her for that!  Then of course she rocked the bike ride & run :)

                                    Glad it's over & grateful me made it!

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