What was I thinking?!

My (far from done) list of training thoughts.

A friend of mine from work, Brett, recently asked me what I think about during all my training time. It was a hard question to answer, not because I haven’t considered that question even before he asked it, but because the range of things that go through my mind on a 6 hour bike ride, 3 hour run or 5 hour race is so broad.

My thoughts have a very stream of consciousness feel to them so I as I try to give you a sense of what I’m thinking, so I’m guessing it will come across that way. Well Brett, here’s an attempt to capture what I think about while training and racing, even though it’s a very small portion of all the thoughts that scroll across my mind.

  • Why did I sign up for Ironman again?
  • Am I going fast enough?
  • Am I going slow enough?
  • Is my heart rate too high?
  • Is my heart rate too slow?
  • I wonder what Amy and Connor are doing?
  • Am I being a bad husband and father by spending all this time training?
  • How could I be a better husband and father.
  • How am I going to fit the next training into my schedule?
  • What a beautiful sunrise.
  • How cool is it that I saw a deer/moose/falcon/rabbit/snake/frog while out on my ride/run.
  • Should I go this way or that way?
  • I must be one of the luckiest people alive to be able to do this right now.
  • What the hell am I doing out here in the rain/dark/heat/cold/snow?
  • I bet that not many other triathletes are out here in the rain/dark/heat/cold/snow? I’ll have a leg up on them when race season comes.
  • Oh crap, I forgot to pay that bill.
  • How am I going to pay that bill?
  • When is this f’in hill going to end?
  • Why did I sign up for Ironman again?
  • It would really suck if I crashed going down this hill at 40 MPH.
  • When am I going to have time to shave my legs before this weekend’s long ride?
  • I need to pick up the pace if I want to hit my goal time.
  • I’m feeling really great, I should pick up the pace a bit.
  • I’m feeling like s*!t, I better slow it down a bit.
  • I could do a 7 minute per mile pace to if I weighed 150.
  • I can’t afford to get a bike tune up, get new race wheels, get new tires – which one can I do?
  • How am I going to fit 23 hours of training in next week, go to Connor’s track meet, go to Connor’s track practice, do my share around the house, see my wife for more than 15 minutes?
  • If I don’t finish this workout until 7:15, what should I have for breakfast so that I can still get to work on time?
  • What should I bring to work for food so that I get enough carbs and calories before tonight’s workout?
  • Why did I sign up for Ironman again?
  • All I need is within me now
  • Why did that idiot have to toss their cigarette out of the window?
  • Why did that idiot have to pass me so close and almost run me off the road?
  • What should I write about for my next blog post at work?
  • I can’t wait to go camping with Connor after the Ironman.
  • I wish I wasn’t training and took the family camping instead.
  • What does Connor think of me spending all this time training? Does he see that I set a goal and taking steps to reach it or does he just know I’m not at home?
  • Perfect circles (when I’m on the bike to help me focus on a good pedal stroke)
  • What does Amy think of me spending all of this time training? Does she see that I set a goal and taking steps to reach it or does she just know I’m not at home?
  • Why did I decide to do the Ironman, again?
  • I think it would be cool to do a cross-country ride on my bike.
  • I wonder if I could do a 100 mile run.
  • Why did I sign up for Ironman again?
  • If I can just make it to that mailbox I’ll let myself walk for a minute.
  • Don’t think about having to do 10 miles, just keep running to the next telephone pole.
  • Wow, I’m feeling pretty good for having been out here this long.
  • This is not going to be a good workout. Get ready to suffer for a while.
  • What is that pain in my knee/ankle/shoulder/chest/foot/calf/hamstring?
  • I think I want to try bike racing.
  • Lean forward, good arm swing (when I’m running to help focus on good form)
  • I love this song!
  • I hope that I can finish Ironman and not pass out.
  • I hope that I can stay up until midnight on race day to watch the last of the racers finish.
  • I hope that I’m not one of the racers that takes until midnight to finish.
  • Is Twitter really going to last?
  • Maybe I should have stuck it out in real estate.
  • I’m so glad that I got out of real estate when I did.
  • If someone with Lou Gehrig’s disease can have the courage to ski down a mountain, then I shouldn’t complain about finishing this workout/race.
  • What can I do to raise more money for Bretton Woods Adaptive.
  • Even though people know I’m training for a race, do they really know what it takes to be able to finish this race?
  • I wish there wasn’t so much litter.
  • Why did I sign up for Ironman again?
  • Should I have a shot of gel now or wait another 15 minutes?
  • Man I have to pee, where on the route is private enough that I can jump into the woods?
  • What junk food am I going to have once Ironman is over?
  • Will I be able to get my weight down to my goal before race day?
  • Should I sign up for Ironman again next year?
  • Where am I going to go for my 100 mile ride this weekend?
  • How can anyone watch NASCAR? And why would you pay money to go watch it live?
  • What am I going to do with the 15 – 20 hours I’ll have back after Ironman is over?
  • Man, this Kings of Leon song is mesmerizing!
  • I wonder if I’ll start to cry again as I approach the finish line in Lake Placid.
  • Should I really tell my co-workers on Monday when they ask what I did this weekend that I ran 15 miles and rode 110 miles? Does that come across as bragging?
  • Maybe I should take up a musical instrument, I’ve always wanted to learn to play the piano.
  • How many calories do I need to take in?
  • How am I going to take in enough calories after this workout? Can I really eat 4,000 more before the end of the day?
  • Why did I sign up for Ironman again?

4 Replies to “What was I thinking?!”

  1. Great post. I'm amazed that I usually DON'T think about much…sort of a blank mind…and I certainly don't remember it after the ride, run or swim. Have a great LP Race! Ron McNutt

  2. Thanks Ron. I could have easily put that I also have a blank mind at times, or at least don't focus on what I'm thinking. Maybe that's what they call "the zone"? All of sudden several miles have passed and you snap out of it.

  3. Jeanne, I think with any kind of training the mind has a tendency to wander off. It's one of the things I like most about training. So often we are focused on specific tasks and don't let the mind wander or ask ourselves questions that we don't take the time to consider.

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