Tuesday, June 16, 2009


If you’re a triathlete, or an athlete of any kind, you can probably relate to what is on my mind. Heck, if you have any hobby or activity about which you’re passionate, you will understand.

I train.

A lot.

If you’ve been reading, you know that a typical week has me doing 9-10 workouts, getting up before the crack of dawn most mornings, and spending most of my weekend days doing something triathlon-related.

And I love it.

I really do.

Well, I have bad days sometimes, but overall, I really enjoy it.

I love the challenge, I love the feeling of accomplishment, and I love being part of the sport of triathlon.

I also LOVE my team.

When I stepped onto the track yesterday morning at 6 am and jogged among my teammates as we warmed up for boot camp, I smiled. They’re my family.

Believe it or not, I do have friends who are not triathletes. And I love them, too. But as I expected when I signed up for Ironman, my time with them over the past few months has been limited, at best.

For some reason, not everyone goes to bed between 8 and 9 on weeknights. I guess they aren’t waking up at 4 or 5 o’clock in the morning. Slackers :)

Lately I’ve just been feeling all kinds of bad about not being able to participate in social activities. The fact is that if everyone is getting together at 8, I’m just not going to make it. Sometimes my friends have been able to meet me for an early for dinner, or I have been able to stay out later because it was a recovery week. Generally, though, I am rushing home to try to get to bed in time to get a full night’s sleep.

About a month ago my neighborfriends (the awesome gals that live in my building) proposed a beach weekend for June 20-21. Awesome! I looked at the calendar. All clear. …Of course that’s because the June schedule for the team hadn’t come out yet.

Soooo… as June gets closer Coach Ed sounds out a message talking about the “all hands” workout weekend planned for – guess what – June 20-21. It invovles a HUGE barbecue and FIESTA. Great.

Some excerpts from Coach’s message:

Hey folks – for many of you the weekend of June 21 is after your big races… It is also the weekend of the 120 mile ride (last long ride) for our IM USA [Lake Placid] people. Susan and I have planned for another “All Hands” ride that weekend and would really like to see a “sick” turnout… We have reserved a pavilion which can hold up to 250 people, obtained county permits to leverage the facility and ABC permits for those who’d like to enjoy some beer or wine. I’ll have bocci ball and horseshoes there, there are also volleyball courts and things like that. We’ll try to spice up our menu for the day a little bit.
Plan to hang out in the country for the afternoon and cheer for/support our Ironman USA people who will be finishing one hell of a hard weekend of training.
…We’ve gone an extra distance with the shelter to ensure that we have a fun day regardless of rain or shine. If you come out you can ride as far or short as you like, enjoy some grub and fun and then if the mood hits maybe run out and set up a Team Z aid station somewhere on the lonely roads of the 120 milers. You have no idea what a piece of chocolate can do for a person at mile 84 of a 120 mile day.

So, I’m a little torn now. Doesn’t that sound like fun? Go for a ride in the country, have an awesome lunch, then go out and support our teammates who are doing their final big training weekend before Ironman USA.

But wait, that’s not all.

This weekend is also the weekend of DC’s first ITU race. Many professional triathletes will be in town competing in this race, and there is also an amateur division in which some of my DC Tri Club friends will be participating. There are opportunities to watch or volunteer.

Plus, earlier this week I got an invite to attend the VIP party the night before the race. I. Want. To. Go.

But I also want to spend time with the girls at the beach. It is like, dare I say, a vacation. And a great chance to spend time with friends I haven’t gotten to see much lately.

I know I need to make time for friends and maintain those relationships. But I feel totally left out of all of the team events and tri stuff happening while I’m away.

Add to that the fact that I still need to do my training and it makes me a little grumpy. Fortunately my training schedule is kind of light this weekend. Saturday morning when I arrive at the beach I will head out for an 8-mile run. I’ve tried to convince the girls to join me, but while they are all very fit, I guess doing 8-miles seems a little excessive to them. Maybe they’ll do part of it with me.

Then on Sunday morning I will do 40 miles on the bike. I’m excited that E is planning to join me for this. I will drive her bike up with me on Saturday.

I want to do it all. But I can’t.

Monday morning is boot camp (at 6 am). It rocks. And I want to be there.

So do I drive home Sunday afternoon and battle beach traffic to get home in time? Do I drive home late Sunday and avoid traffic, but then shorten my sleep? Or do I just skip it and know that there will be plenty of boot camps in my future?

I AM truly excited for the beach weekend. Really. I know I’ll have fun, as I always do when I get together with these awesome ladies. I am just having a hard time preventing triathlon from taking over my life completely.


  1. You are at the BEGINNING of your Ironman training. Go on the vacation. TRUST me - there will be plenty of opportunity to torture yourself later when the workouts are "more important".

    Have fun!

  2. this is tough, i know. i am friendless from my "early" bedtime of 9:30!

    You know in your heart what you really what you really want to do. Do that. You'll be happier. :)

  3. I'll solve it for you, come see me in Colorado! We can do some high altitude training rides. How about 40 miles of climbing starting around 5700 feet? That's on the schedule for Saturday...

  4. Cat, Esther has said what I was going to say - GO TO THE BEACH - come September/October you are going to have time for NOTHING but work and IRONMAN Training. Hopefully you have good friends outside of Triathlon who will understand and say "We'll be here after you become an Ironman..." but right now, get the miles in and maintain what balance you can because as you get closer to race day - your life becomes "What I do when I am not TRAINING..." which isn't very much...Have a wonderful time at the BEACH!