Friday, June 05, 2015

One week to go

This time next week I'll have my race packet. I'll have my number on my bike and helmet. I'll have the bike loaded on the car ready to head to the park ridiculously early - 4:30 AM, that is, since the park gates will close at 6 AM and all competitors must be inside the park, ready for the 6:30 swim start (my swim start will be a bit later, since starts are staged according to age group and mine is one of the last - I think it's a 7:10 start).  I will have attended the pre-race gathering the evening before and heard race instructions. Training will be done. It'll be race day.

I'm fighting nagging nervousness. My panicky experience two weeks ago with the open water swim practice has me feeling a little less confident than I had been feeling. My trail run today, which felt long and slow has me a bit worried about that 5k at the end.

I'm trying to be positive, trying to do all the mental work to set myself up to finish well. I'm telling myself that my goal is to finish, but really, I'd love to do it in a good time, though what that is for this first-time sprint triathlete, I'm not really sure.  We shall see. (Yes, I did the Ramblin' Rose in 2012, but that wasn't an official sprint tri. The Tri Latta is an official distance).

Tomorrow I'll do another open water swim practice. I hope I can breathe after 20 yards and don't have to flip over on my back and talk myself out of panic. If I do have a panic reaction again, I know what to do. It'll be ok and I'll just keep stroking and breathing and get past it.

I am so grateful for the gift of health; for the ability to swim, bike, and run; for the support and encouragement of family and friends.  I haven't shared in this space the really good news that my RA is now in medical remission, but that, too, is a tremendous gift which means that now when I hurt, it's not because joints are being destroyed, but because I've done a hard workout. It also means that I live mostly pain free these days, swollen joints no longer inflamed, hands and wrists no longer hurting all the time, rings sliding on and off easily. I wake in the mornings and do not hobble downstairs. It is good.

A year ago, I could not have imagined feeling this well. I had gotten used to pain, forgotten what it felt like to not hurt all the time. I just thought pain was my life. So, honestly, whatever happens next Saturday, it's been a journey that has been so worth taking. I'm already starting to wonder about the next race and how to improve ...

For now, time to pack the swim bag and get to bed. I'll keep you posted ...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hooray! You're in remission!! So glad to read that! Miss you bunches,