Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Big News - taking things one step at a time

I'm going away for a weekend trip on Friday, to Arizona.

Those of you that are plugged into the triathlon community may already recognize the significance of a trip to Arizona this weekend.

I'm going there to enjoy some time in the sun, spend some time with friends, swim outdoors, run in a tanktop, volunteer at an Ironman...

And sign up for Ironman Arizona 2014.

Last night I had a minor panic about it it.

"I'm not ready to do an Ironman."

It's true.  I'm really not.  I've never run more then 25 km at a time.  My longest bike rides are probably in the 100 km range.  The lane swim times in my town often only last an hour, and I'm not a fast enough swimmer to get 4000 metres in that time.  (Because let's be honest, I won't swim straight enough to keep it down to 3.9km).

Fact: I am not ready to do an Ironman
Fact: I am not doing an Ironman - yet.

See, the beauty of Ironman sign up is that you usually make the decision a year ahead of time.  When I picture the reality of doing the 140.6 miles, it makes me feel incredibly overwhelmed.  When I think about what I have to do this week, or this month, it's all doable steps.  In fact, if there's a life lesson triathlon has taught me, it's to look at big projects as steps, rather then one overwhelming thing.

I've often had conversations with people that think a half marathon is a big deal.  It's really not, I tell them.  I honestly maintain that the hardest steps I ever took when it came to endurance was going from 0 to 5 km, rather then 5 to 20.  After that, it was a matter of building on what I already had.

I'm not quite convinced an Ironman is the same.  It's a whole lot longer then any race I've ever done before.  Distance-wise, double.  Mentally, I suspect it's more then double.  I expect I'll learn a lot in the year I take to prepare.


  1. Have a great time!!!! And you have time to train and you will rock it!

  2. Awesome! A year is lots of time. I can intro you to the coach that got me through. I had never run more than a half marathon before I signed up, and never ran more in the year between sign up and race. Was supposed to, but couldn't. Hardly anyone can swim the 4K in an hour, certainly not me. Even 1.5 hours is good to set you up for a fine day. Look for bib 2624 David Turner, he's a buddy of mine.

  3. I remember having a similar freak out before I signed up for IM #1! You can do this Deb!! You've got Angie behind you along with all the rest of us. I can not wait to follow along on your journey. You know how to reach me if you ever need someone to talk to during training to talk you through the ups and downs!

  4. Good Luck..I have IM Boulder on the horizon for next year so I feel your pain when thinking about not being ready..but you will be by next November.

  5. Have fun volunteering! You'll probably get plenty of inspiration volunteering making signing up a logical conclusion. I'm envious!

  6. Good luck at Arazona. I will be doing my first Ironman in 2014 (Florida).