Coming to Terms With My Race Season

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Over the weekend, I did a little cleanup on the backend of my blog and while doing so, I updated my race calendar.  It is really, really sparse for the first time in years.  I guess I’m lucky to have been so healthy throughout my athletic “career.”  As of right now, I’m registered for two races in 2018 – Rev3 Williamsburg Olympic Triathlon and Space Coast Half Marathon.

Of course, I’m not stopping there.  I fully intend to register for the Army Ten Miler during priority registration next month.  I’ve run that race every year since 2008, and would like to at least try to keep up my streak.  Will I be able to run it in the time limit by October?  Who knows!  But I’m going to hope for the best and plan to be there.  It’s probably going to be my big “challenge” race of the year in terms of running.

For the Space Coast Half Marathon, I’m less concerned.  I registered for the “slower” half of the race, meaning that I have a full 7 hours to complete the course.  Since I don’t have pain walking, I’m absolutely confident I can train up to walk 13.1 miles without issue.  And that’s not a bad “worst case scenario.”  It’s entirely possible I will be running by then.

I’m also planning to add on some additional multisport races after Williamsburg.  What, I’m not sure.  My favorite local race group offers an Aquabike option at most (if not all) of their triathlons, and since I can swim and bike without issue, that seems like a good plan if I’m not able to comfortably run.  Doesn’t mean I can’t still be run training, it would just let me run without the added pressure of having to be ready for a race sooner that I need to.

I’ve also realized that maybe being an aquabike athlete is where I should go when it comes to multisport.  Let’s be honest, the run is the part of the race I dislike the most.  I do enjoy out and back races where I can see people and cheer them on (regardless of whether they’re ahead of me or behind), but generally, the run isn’t what I enjoy.  I love the rush and the ridiculousness of the open water swim.  I love flying through a course on my bike.  And then I have to go run.  More than once, I have watched the aquabike finishers roll in and thought “Man, that’s the way to be.  This running stuff is stupid.”

I’ve also realized that I have some opportunities for half-distance aquabike.  The run is where I end up in trouble when it comes to race time limits.  I’m not fast.  That’s totally okay – but races have rules, and I need to stay within them.  However, when it comes to the swim and the bike, that’s a different story.  Sure, I’m not fast, but I’m much closer to midpack.  Of course, I’m not quite ready to be riding 56 miles just yet – and I’m not going to push myself.  But it’s a pretty sweet option.

Of course, I also love the rush of finishing a triathlon.  And I can’t give up races like the Army Ten Miler.  So I’m not sure what’s next for me.  But what I love is that there are so many options and I don’t have to pick just one.

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