So, what now? I got to hear those famous words from Mr. Riley's voice as I crossed the finish line of a 6 month journey. Now let me tell you about that little journey, and why, 3 weeks later, I still stand by my statement.
I'm never doing that again.
For six months of my life, I wasn't me...I was all about me. I was Rachel in training. My primary thoughts each night were: How'd I feel today? What's up for tomorrow? What do I need to pack? How many calories do I need for this workout? What time am I waking up, again? Me, me, me.
And I lost track of more important things in life. I didn't speak to my family often enough. I didn't speak with anyone, really. My email updates to my college roommates were infrequent. It took a toll on Kyle and I. I had no energy to waste, and I was in a constant state of Ironman. I didn't even have the time or energy to do basic tasks. Laundry, dishes, cooking.
Whoa, that got dark. But during winter training, that's what happens. It's dark. You find yourself training alone because everyone else can be fair weather fans, but you have to fit it all in. Thankfully, I wasn't alone often. I do have great (crazy) friends who were up for anything. And for them, I am thankful.
I am most thankful for Brian, my coach. Another shot out to this man, who did most of the thinking for me. All I had to do was wake up. His coaching practice, Triathlon Lifestyle Coaching was a great fit. He did understand my life, and eased up when life really got in the way. I can't imagine doing it any differently. I never would've made it to the start line injury free, or that prepared. I followed his plan to the best of my abilities, to almost a T. And I showed up at St. George ready for a long day. Ready for 13 hours. His prediction. And just like San Dieguito half marathon, I beat him to his prediction.
I do not regret my decision to sign up, train, race. It wasn't that dark. In fact, I loved the experience. I loved getting my body back to where I was after my freshman year training trip. I started to enjoy running. Okay, maybe not running, but the positive effects running has on my body. I loved proving myself wrong so many times on the limits I once previously set for myself. I love that now, most everything will seem easier.
So why am I never doing it again? Why not do an "easier" course to prove how hard SGIM was? Because I don't think I could. I trained my butt off for this race. I followed that plan. And I showed up as ready as I could be. These are my thoughts:
If I do an easier one, I'll slack. I'll tell myself, "Oh it's easier, you don't have to do all those hill repeats. Oh, it's easier, you can slack this workout." Then, because it's easier, I'd have a faster time goal. And although I may beat my St. George time, I know I wouldn't be satisfied, because I let myself down in training.
So. Check. Done. Off the list. I got my tattoo, and forever I will be an Ironman.