This week in lectures, our lecturer said "quite possibly, you will like it and not like it, and perhaps, that is exactly how it should be"
This has stuck in my mind since then, it is so simple, yet I think it can be applied to so many things in our lives. I'm using it today, because it fits. There are many things in training and racing that I like and don't like and today was no exception. I mean, you feel pain, elation, fatigue, proud, anxious, strong and weak all at the same time. If however, you can try to realise and accept those things, and appreciate that is exactly how it should be, it soon makes it easier to perform and value the day for what it is. I guess it is what I love about sport!
So.... Enough philosophical thought and more about the race! I went into today to lay down a marker for the season, prepare for the elite duathlon and also do my first brick session of the year! I was confident in my winter training, but had the same pre-race nerves and doubts as always. For me, it doesn't matter what race it is, or how important and big it may seem, I know I will feel, and need, some nerves! I always feel better after a good blow out, because it reminds me you can push hard, keep pushing hard and then try push a little bit harder, and still be ok!
I was racing with lots of Thames Turbo athletes and me and the other @ttirideraceteam member Jack Macfarlane (@jackmacfarlane) won the female and male races respectively. Racing with club and team mates pushes me on and I tried to encourage them whenever I could. It was great to see the club so well represented!
Run speed is back with me after some short interval treadmill sessions in training. The cadence work is coming into its own and I enjoyed having the legs moving quickly. I struggled to keep up with the speed my legs were going when I came off the bike! It was a shock to the system as I haven't done any brick work yet. I'm looking forward to building some longer run intervals and brick sessions into my training.
The bike leg felt super smooth today and I loved being back on my race bike. I kept a consistent effort and it just seemed to work. I can't really describe or recall how the laps went by on the bike. I guess in a sprint, you can just get in a rhythm. Today, I was just there, doing it and enjoying the race!
Now those bits of it that I didn't like (exactly as it should be be)! My transitions were some of my worst and whilst they should be rusty at this stage of the season, they confirmed the need for some structured time spent practising. Transition is one of those things I keep telling my coach (@andybtricoach) I will practice, but I get to the end of the week and I still haven't put it in my plan. It is a small part of the race, but it is going to be crucial for me this year. So the plan is to be practising jumping on my bike twice a week. I need to be prepared for bruises, failed attempts and lots of learning by doing!
The last run is a mixture of likes and don't likes! It hurts (a lot), but there is something I quite like about that. I just tell myself to try not let anyone pass, to run hard, and know that I'm close enough to the finish to hold on. I couldn't of given anymore today, I liked a lot, I didn't like a bit and that is exactly the way it should be!