I bought some new running shoes recently which came pre-laced with elastic laces. I struggled with the toggles for a while and I thought it was taking me longer to adjust the toggles in transition in my triathlons than it used to take to tie the normal laces in a double knot.
I mentioned this to a fellow triathlete and she informed me that the idea is that you “set and forget” the elastic laces. Why couldn’t the instructions be more clear in that respect?
Since this moment of enlightenment, and realising I can just pull my shoes on and don’t have to worry about laces at all, I’m sure I’m saving at least 5 seconds in transition.
In all seriousness, I’m not competitive (or fast) enough to need to shave any time of my transition splits. The elastic laces are still convenient though.
I mentioned previously that I registered for my first (and only) olympic distance race at Coffs Harbour on 8th March. Plans have changed. Our house sold super-quickly and life has been more crazy-busy than normal. The Port Macquarie Triathlon Club has a club race this coming weekend which is also olympic distance. So, after much consideration, I am forfeiting my entry to the Coffs race and doing the Port Macquarie club race. I had to join the club in order to be eligible to race. Who would ever have thought I would be a member of a triathlon club – let alone TWO clubs at the same time!
The decision was made only a week or so ago. This meant I lost 7 days of prep for the biggest race of my life. I am going into the weekend physically tired from late nights sorting through decades worth of paper and other accumulated rubbish. I feel incredibly underprepared both mentally and physically. I can’t remember the last time I actually ran 10km. I KNOW I have never run 10km after a 40km bike ride.
I made the mistake at looking at last year’s results for this race and that has psyched me out a bit. I think I’m going to be about 1/2 hour slower than the slowest finisher last year. It is not uncommon for me to be the last finisher at my local club so it shouldn’t be an issue. However, I run the last section beating myself up thinking all the volunteers are having to hang around just for me, and surely they all want to be going home. The worst thing about these thoughts is that I know it’s probably not the case. When I’m volunteering at parkrun waiting for the slower runners and walkers to finish, I’m happy to see them participating and finishing. I don’t stand there clock-watching so I can pack up. Yet while I’m out there, I feel like I’m holding everyone up.
One of the reasons I decided on the Port Macquarie race is that my coach is based there and she offered to do the race with me. In many ways, that will be really nice. And yet I don’t want it to be mentally draining for her if she spends the whole race having to keep my spirits up!
I keep coming back to the question of why it is so much easier to encourage others than it is to encourage ourselves. I have two days to get my attitude into gear so I am celebrating the fact that I am able to race rather than concentrating on all the other rubbish (there is no other word for it) that floats through my mind. I want to get to the end of the race feeling good (yet exhausted) and happy that I managed to finish it. I don’t want to focus on how slow I am.
I am finally doing a race big enough to require nutrition supplements. There’s a first time for everything! (This is not all for this race – I had to test them out beforehand to make sure my stomach could handle them.)
And now for something different, my best friend and I booked our 40th birthday celebration holiday tonight (just us, getting away for a long weekend). We are heading to Tassie for the first time. Neither of us have been there before. She doesn’t know it yet, but I’m determined that we’ll visit Hobart parkrun while we’re in town.