Friday, March 28, 2014

Suddenly Susan

I said I would cover disappointments in my blog too. So here goes.

Susan is my alter ego, and unlike the Oatmeal's  Blerch, she is not 'the wall' but a bunch of pain and self-loathing. I've had The Blerch. The Blerch tells you when you are tired. It tells you that you don't have any energy left, and should eat snacks! That's probably because you are actually low on blood sugar and you need a cookie. The Blerch is that feeling your body gets when it's heavy, and you feel like you can't move another step. Susan, on the other hand, causes me physical and mental pain. She tells me I'm a piece of crap, and questions why I try at all. Instead of suggesting a cookie, she makes you feel bad for all of the cookies you ate, and calls you an unworthy pig.

According the his creator, the Blerch is a "wretched, lazy beast." (He's kind of cute.)
Susan looks more like this. She is a spiteful B, actively trying to kill me.

By the way, I don't even really eat a lot of snacks. F-it. Maybe I'll start.

I came into triathlon as a runner. Although I found a love for biking, and a non-hate of swimming, the run is still my 'A' part of the race, and where I feel the most comfortable. If I don't feel good on the run, I'm inclined not to do triathlon at all.

I decided to do Wildflower Long Course this year to show the course who's boss! Wildflower 2013 was not my best event. Susan swam with me in some choppy waters, and with the combination of a rented wet suit that was too tight, I hated myself for the entire race. But, at least I still had my legs on the run. This year I wanted to come back, stronger than ever, and conquer that course. This winter I've been able to climb the tallest mountain (ok, not really, but I got up Old La Honda and was pretty stoked), and swam the deepest swimming pool. . .

Swimming: I finally got some stroke coaching through Total Immersion, which is helping me swim more effortlessly. Thanks to Coach Mandy, and Coach Stuart! I've been swimming more slowly in order to get the technique, but feel confident that it will help me be faster and prevent injury in the long haul.

Biking: This winter's pedaling issue has been resolved with some more stretching and rolling. Although it made me back off of my first century bike ride, I had a great metric century ride in Solvang. The day after, I was able to hit the countryside for a decent 10 mile run. The weekend was a good test of my fitness - not quite where I was six weeks before Barb's race last summer, but very good considering the winter and an injury.

Running: A PR at the Kaiser Half Marathon was a surprise start to the season, and I've challenged myself to up the ante at shorter races. I'm finally in the sub-8:00 mode of my running career, where 7:59 feels amazing compared to 8:15, and I'd like to keep it that way. This year was looking pretty stellar.

But, during the March Triathlon Series last Sunday, my run suffered. Then instead of getting tough, Susan decided to run - rather walk - with me. I've never had to walk before. The swim was cold, and my feet were pretty frozen after the bike leg. When I put on my running shoes, it felt like running on peg legs but my endurance felt great, and the pace was good out of the shoot. One mile later, the feeling came back in my toes, as well as a sharp pain in my shins = worst shin splints ever. Yowza! Then my calves started to cramp. For the first time, I hated running. Really hated it.

Now I need to take a step back and think about what to do next. I'm not feeling great about running right now, and I refuse to run that hilly-ass Wildflower course with Susan. She is a B, and needs to be off-loaded. So how do I get rid of her?

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