Friday, January 10, 2014

The Year of The Beast: Part Two

     I think a good personal blog should be a combination of different elements. I think it should be informational about a particular topic, or topics, and it should also allow you to get to know the blogger. In the past, before my extended blogging hiatus, I think I failed in that task. I spent a lot of time writing about the races that I did, so you got to know about me and my running experiences, but I offered little advice about any specific topic. I'm ready to right the ship now.

     I really want my blog to be a source of inspiration for you, sprinkled with some useful information about health and nutrition, and all wrapped up in some "getting to know me better as a blogger" wrapper. Kinda like a big blogging burrito. So with that being said I'd like to share my race plans with you all for the year so you have an idea of what I'm getting into.
     Last year was The Year of The Beast. My only focus was Ironman Louisville. After my unsuccessful attempt in 2012 I wanted to focus my energy and effort on that race alone. I thought about doing some other smaller races, I guess what triathletes would call a "B" or "C' race, but I really just wanted to knock the "A" race, Ironman Louisville, out. And my efforts paid off.

     This year my focus is a little different but the goals are still lofty. This year I've decided to focus on the weakest sport of the three for me: running. I really have a love/hate relationship with running and it is the sport that I struggle with the most. I know that if I'm ever going to be good at triathlons, I'm going to have to develop my running. So this year I have only one "A" race: the Indiana Trail 100 Yes, I'm going to run a 100 mile ultra marathon.

     I know that sounds crazy for a guy who struggles with running but it really appeals to me for 2 reasons: (1) the volume of running required preparing for the race will help me focus on my running and become better at it, and (2) it will push my endurance farther than Ironman Louisville did. Now you may be asking, "Why do you want to push yourself to the limits?" Well the answer is simple (even though I don't quite understand it myself): If I don't feel pushed to the limit by an event I don't have the motivation to do the event.


     It is something that I discovered after I completed Ironman Louisville. I signed up for a half marathon after Ironman Louisville but I only did 5 training runs in preparation for it. Why? Some may call it post-Ironman blues. I call it lack of motivation. I had done the race before and running 13.1 miles did not feel like a challenge. I don't say that to belittle the accomplishment in any way. To train yourself to run 3, 6, or 13.1 miles is incredible. It's a journey I took myself and am very proud of what I accomplished, but in terms of pouring myself 100% into training I just have to be challenged. And the 100 mile race definitely will do that.

     After the 100-miler in April, I will turn my focus back to triathlons. With my running being hopefully much improved, I really want to become more competitive. My goal at Ironman Louisville was simply to finish. I had no delusions of being competitive. But now I really want to see what I'm capable of achieving. So with that in mind I plan to compete in a Half Ironman in Augusta, Georgia in September: Ironman Augusta 70.3.
     Now I know you're askng yourself "Well how is that a challenge since you've already done a full Ironman?" Well that's a good question. The challenge is that I want to do more than just finish. I want to finish and be competitive in my age group. That is the challenge. And I am ready for the task.
     So that is my race year in a big blogging burrito. Or as I like to say: The Year of The Beast: Part Two. I hope you'll follow along with me this year as I continue my exciting journey. Now, for some reason I'm really craving some Mexican food.

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