For the most part winter training has been going great. I am still chipping away at my swimming, and starting to feel much stronger in my strokes. The goal, the last couple months has been to drag myself to the pool at least 5 days a week. I set this in my mind to be a burden(hence I used the word Drag) but in reality it has become something I enjoy. January has been good and I have averaged over 17,000 yards a week for the month.
While swimming has been going great. My running has been a little rough. After two hard spills on my Mt bike that were only a day apart, I started to notice some small aches and pains. These grew to larger aches a pains, and after a short while running was painful. I realized something at this moment. No one else truly cares that you are hurt (Just putting it in a blunt sense). Injuries are part of competition and you can either do something about it, or you can not. I decided that I was not going to give up at this point. I still kept my 40 miles a week of running going, and If I am honest I hated almost every second of it. With school and work I found myself running through the night at 10,11, sometimes even 12pm. There is a road that parallels a river by my house, and you run elevated way above the river. At night this river casts off fog and you find yourself running in a somewhat surreal state. The river and road twist and turn together traveling south and just when you feel like you are running in a strange dream the headlights of a lone car over take you, temporarily blinding you to the night. It was on one of these nights that I realized I am in a valley, and I have hit the bottom. Pain at the moment was demotivating me beyond belief, and I just wanted to stop! Thoughts(recurring ones) create beliefs, and beliefs can turn to life patterns. If you begin to stop on runs, it becomes easier the next time, and you soon find yourself giving up as the normal habit. In short I hate to stop on my runs. and if it wasn't for the engraning of this thought into my mind, I would have been walking through the dark. Lucky for me my Being stubborn and continuing to run has not created any further injuries, and after 3 long weeks I finally feel back! At the moment I feel very glad I ran through the pain because I feel stronger than ever in my running. Will I actually be faster, we will just have to wait for the first race and see ( I really don't know).
What lies ahead for 2010? My race schedule this year will look very similar to last years. I will be racing Ironman Boise and Ironman Lake stevens again, and hopefully(with some hard work) be improving on my times. Many already know this but I have decided that my goal is to aim towards a pro card. Why do I want it? To me it isn't about holding a card, If the card is the only thing I am after then I am only lying to myself. The pursuit of a pro card is mainly to push myself as an athlete. I have found in competition that I rise to the level at which I am around. If I know I am about to go up against great athletes who will quite easily put me to shame, I will still put my best foot forward. I am not afraid to go all out, and completely fail. This has always been my weakness as a runner. You could line me up against the worlds greatest, and in the back of my mind I would believe that somehow if I give it my all, I can take him. In reality there is no chance, but I would still give it a go and try to push that athlete as long as I could (even if it was only for 100 meters). I have quite literally done this at countless races. I know I should stop doing it, but it is an urge I can't resist. I guess you could call it a competitive habit :). But with a chance of making myself look like a fool I have decided to go for it. I could care less about racking up 1st places at races. I care about being a better athlete. 20th and a faster time sounds a whole lot greater to me than 1st and a slower time. So if Luck lands right( I will need it) I will be chasing this dream whole heartedly. All and all I am excited. I can not wait for racing to start!