Of course, you wouldn't know it's one month until IM CDA as once again my math skills are subpar. My internal counting clock is off by a day. Let's hope I show up on time in Coeur d'Alene!
Today, Coach Gerardo shared the rest of my schedule with me leading up to the race. This week is about 21 hours, next week is around 18 and the remainder of my training will hover in the 12-13-hour range. So, two more big weeks and then we'll ease off the gas. Then again, I've never quite felt my foot on the physical accelerator that much this season. That's not to say I haven't been training hard -- I've given this everything I've got in the tank just to survive it all. But it just goes to show the difference experience can make. The stillness, relaxation and sense of confident purpose is having a real effect on my body, allowing me to keep weight on more easily this time around while remaining "dialed in" for race day.
If race day were tomorrow I'd welcome it with open arms. Unlike last season towards the end of Ironman training, I don't feel like I'm cramming for a final exam with the last big training sessions. Look, I've been on a performance plateau for around six months now. An extra big bike ride or long swim won't make or break my Ironman, so I might as well chill out about the whole thing.
One month to go. What will I be feeling and thinking at this time in June? Will I be celebrating finishing the race the way I intended, or will I be glad just to get to the finish line? During my training workouts, when I have more time to let my mind wander, I think I'm going to visualize going through the entire race. I keep reading and hearing pro athletes and coaches talk about the importance of visualization. This Saturday, when I'm participating in the Heartbreak 100 ride in Lebec, will be a good time to start.
One month to go. I'm savoring every moment. Every memory. Absorbing every detail of every workout I can. These are likely the last real days of having the freedom to train like this for many years to come. Sure, I'll do Olympic triathlons and 70.3 races, but maybe not an Ironman. I've said that before. So even the hard workouts are becoming more enjoyable. Just for the sheer joy of having the free time to do them. For doing something for myself.
One month to go.
31 days and counting.