Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Double Secret Training!!!

OK, I've been out of touch for quite some time now. That's because I've had my focus entirely on the biggest BHAG of my life. First of all I should tell you what BHAG stands for. Big Hairy Audacious Goal. Every year I challenge myself to achieve something that I had never down before. This is sort of like a Bucket list. As you get older this gets tougher to accomplish.

Last year my BHAG was to run 50 races in the year I turned 50. Well I got to race 46 and I was toast. It was not to be!! But I'm OK with that. If you don't set goals, any path will get you to where you want to be. So I was way ahead of most people.

This year my focus is on completing an IronMan. Notice I did not write the word RACE. My goal is to finish and live to talk (and of course write) about it. Now that my goal was set I needed to gain entry into one of the races. In road races this is an easy task. In IronMan races this is the first challenge you face. These races fill up fast. So you have to be quick on the key board right when the entry process starts or be at the event the year prior. I was on the key board. The event I chose is the Florida IronMan. Why this race? Well from the course profile it seems to have the flattest course. I'm not a very good hill climber running and even worst on a bike. I seem to be very good at setting a pace and holding it for a very long time so this course plays to my strength. They say that the hilliest part of the race is the swim!!! Then again this creates yet another problem.

You see I'm a very poor swimmer. How poor you wonder? Well at the half ironman races I've completed in I'm almost dead last out of the water. Yes out of 1600 swimmers in one of the last events I did I was 1582 out of the water. I swim like a rock, but that wouldn't be fair to rocks.

So my next challenge was to learn how to swim. I signed up at a local swim club in Westford and the instructor has worked wonders for me. I'm not fast but I'm improving. This has not been with out some hard work and a lot of laughs. There was one class where Ivana (the instructor) was trying to get me to kick correctly. I kept telling her that my kick was not important in an Ironman but she was determined. After an hour of working with her I think I finally got her to forget about my kick. You see, during the drills as I kicked I was going backwards. Ivana kept saying "that is not possible". Well it is and now I just kick to maintain balance. So my time when we first started was 3 minutes per 100 yards, now it's down to 1:50. I'm still slow but I'm much faster then I was. Thanks Ivana.

I've already booked my flight, booked transportation for my bike, and set hotel reservations. This Ironman stuff takes a lot of planning and $'s.

I also started a 26 week training program for and Ironman. The problem I've been having is it is way to easy for me at my level of fitness. I'm chomping at the bit to when I have to do "brick" workouts and other 2 a day work outs.

The race is 4 months from today. I hope I'm on the right track.