2 Days to Havasu
I can feel excitement building for the Havasu Triathlon. Today is Thursday and the race is on Saturday. Too bad I won’t be there.
I’ll make this quick because I explained a bit of it in yesterday’s post. To make a long story less long, Lori and I woke up yesterday morning ready to fly to California and noticed the CEO of our household wasn’t feeling well. The CEO’s name is Ivory and she’s our Cat E. O. I don’t know what the E and O mean. I just made that up. Ivory is not just any cat. She and Lori are soul mates and when one is upset, the other is upset. Therefore, upon seeing Ivory’s condition, we had to take her to the veterinarian and not just any veterinarian. We took her to a hospital full of specialists in the town of Cary: two hours driving, one way.
That reminds me of a quote from my favorite historical figure:
The best doctor in the world is the veterinarian. He can’t ask his patients what is the matter-he’s got to just know.
Anyway… one thing led to another and I’m not going to the Havasu Triathlon. But that’s no reason to stop blogging about it.
It’s All In the Preparation
The first year IRONMAN managed our local Beach2Battleship race, we were hit by hurricane Matthew which destroyed the best part of the bike course. Instead of canceling the race, they just shortened the bike course which drew a mountain of criticism (mostly from people who couldn’t possibly appreciate how hard the race director and her staff worked to make it the best race possible). At the prerace dinner, Mike Reilly said something to the effect of , “… you’ve put in the work to get here…”
Even though I can’t make it to Lake Havasu City, I did put in the work to get there. I feel so much better (if you have Google Translator, you might want to set it to sarcasm to understand those last five words).
It’s All in the Finish
Mike Reilly’s words keep coming back to me even though he was talking to athletes who were about to toe the starting line. This athlete is about to help feed an ailing cat.
If I don’t feel good, it’s because there’s no outlet for my preparation… or is there?
What I’m getting at is something I vlogged about last year from Arizona.
Races are nothing more than a facade of the real triathlon. The race company comes in to town, sets up their tents and finish chutes. Then after the race, everything gets packed up and hauled off to the next race. What happens in between is just the show. The real endurance event has been going on since that first training session when you realized that you were not as fit as you thought you were. The idea of the race gives you the motivation to keep training and the real race gives you a finish line to cross. I have to admit that that finish line counts for a lot.
What if there were no race?
A World Without Races
I’ve often wondered if I would still train like a triathlete if there were no races to train for. Probably not. That race may be a facade, but it performs a very important function. It provides a focal point for multiple, sometimes thousands, of athletes. It brings people together and it sets them apart.
How can I possibly test my training if I don’t go to the race? The answer may not satisfy you, but I think it will accomplish what I want. I can swim, bike, and run any time I choose. I’m talking about a triathlon of one. I alone will test my skills in a field of my own choosing and at a time that suits me. I will miss the fellow athletes and I will miss that finish line feeling, but I will do this. I will put on my own triathlon and I will be the only one registered.
The real endurance event we are training for is life. The starting gun rang out years ago so let’s get moving.