Sunday, July 17, 2016

Moments in Austria: Clear eyes. Full Heart.

"Competitiveness is the opposite of complacency. It is disquieting and uncomfortable. It requires commitment, and risk and soul-searching. When you choose to compete, you take a huge gamble. You might lose." - Pat Summit

That quote is truer that true. Competition can be thrilling and rewarding but also riddled with disappointment. In the end only one athlete crosses the line first.  

But the athlete that is in love with the journey and the special moments along the way is the lucky one. That athlete will always, on some level, win. 

I am in love with the  grind and long days of endurance training. 

I love the chase and to be chased. 

I am not afraid of failure. Failure helps me grow as an athlete, tinker with my approach and discover myself.

And I recognize that it is a GIFT every time I toe the start line.

Ironman Austria came hot on the heels of the DELTA DENTAL Race UP Mount Washington. A race that I will try to toe the line at every year because it holds a special place in my heart. It is grueling and unique and beautiful and the one with the most heart wins. I like that. Below are a few pics post 7.6 miles up, up, up the auto road. A few key points on how I approach this race.  I do not do any specific training for this event because it falls directly in the middle of the bulk of my race season. This particular year I was racing Ironman Austria just 6 days after.  Instead I put focus on some of the BIG GEAR workouts I do on the bike. A common one for me is 20 min intervals efforts where the first 10 minutes is in the biggest gear I can push and then 10 minutes at 90rpm. I try to hit the same power average during the entire interval. I find this workout carries very well over to running uphill due to similar muscle recruitment. 

Moments are always coming and going, so it’s sometimes hard to tell how important a moment is until it has past.  Some big moments are easy to see the value, while others might not seem important at the time, but later you’ll find out that’s when everything changed. Crossing the line 4th at Mount Washington was very special to me. I had been trying to break into the top 5 ever since I started running this race and this was the first year it happened. I also knew how strong and fluid I felt which was a great boost of confidence heading into Ironman Austria.  

After Washington all energy was focused on RECOVERY. A few of my secret weapons:

-8+ hours of sleep per night
-SPM Omegagenics fish oil 2x daily
-Infinit Nocturne at bedtime
-self massage/foam rolling
-2x daily Smoothies made with beetperformer juice and wheat grass and kale and jalapenos! 

Before I knew it I was flying out on the big bird headed to Klagenfurt, Austria! I am just going to build some suspense before I detail my training, nutrition and secrets in the lead up and during the Ironman. 
The top of the bike Ironman Bike Course

The Famous Basket Bike with the beautiful Ironman swim course in the background.

The most wonderful host Hermann Keiler and family. And again, the Basket Bike.

Stay tuned for the Ironman Austria Report....

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