Along with melting snow with the warmer days knocking down our door (as is the gale force wind), the fat finally is melting away from consistent training & nutrition. Not that I had a lot of fat to "melt" away in the first place, but it was not helping me carrying an extra 20 on New Year's Day. Those hills sure seem longer and steeper with the equivalent of a dumbbell adding to the already troublesome gravity issue. Either way it is nice to finally be single digits away from what I will call "race weight" or normal after today's ride in the mountains. So what if I was anaerobic barely holding the wheel of a weekend warrior with hairy legs on the way to Jamestown. So what if when I pulled for a couple miles hammering out some higher than within my fitness level wattage and still didn't drop him. The point is I didn't get dropped myself!
Early season riding can be frightening for an out of shape member of the pedigree of athletes who are more anal than any other sport around...triathlon. Especially when after half an hour of riding you feel like turning around and just bagging the ride like today. The legs, lungs & mind were not in it. However with Ironman CDA looming less than 4 months away, the excuses have to stop & it is time to march on. The tough part is certainly mentally staying in the game to do what is needed to perform on race day. The miles go by and all I see in front of me are wasted minutes with my family. Why not just stop all together? I have before. Cold turkey too. But it creeps back like an addiction--bad one. When you drive down the road and see a tri bike on another car's roof and get all excited checking out the components, frame, pedals, etc...there is more to it than simply not enjoying it. It is an addiction that when in the heat of battle (when racing or having a good training day), just feels so right and there are few places or things I would rather be doing at that moment. Including sleep or a big ol' NY Strip steak!
So the hours tick away and fat slips away, the race days near (closer than I care to think about), then there is that one snapshot in my mind that looks similar to me having my most ideal perfect dream race from start to finish. I have had those days. I seek those days still and despite being a Master's athlete (that sounds so OLD!)...reach for a goal of another perfect day. Surely those perfect race days are gone long ago, but I'm having difficulty convincing myself of that, mainly because the last person I really want to listen to is myself--because if I'm right, the snapshot will not ever really become a reality. I can dream though right? As long as you have a dream and keep on reaching for it, you will always tell yourself that you are melting those pounds away, clocking in more time out on the roads, trails & pools and ultimately, it is all worth it. Sounds like a pretty intense inner-battle with myself and I will not lie, it is. However, the best thing about it is no matter which scenario plays out in the end, I will be right. If anything the beauty of arguing with yourself is that you ALWAYS will be right in the end. One way or another.