Wednesday, August 1, 2012

On being GREAT

You know what happens when you train alone (and thus has no idea what paces/watts other people can do) or with people who are slower than you are (and they think that you are omg so fast) or when you win some low key races? You start to think that you are fast, bad-ass, great. 

At least it has happened to me.  I think of myself as a competitive triathlete eventhough I have done only two triathlons. But I did them with decent results and I do train mostly alone or with slow people so my ego is enormous. Interestingly I would never refer to myself as a competitive runner because I know something about running and I know that 3:30ish marathon or 19min 5k are sub-par performances. But I do not know much about triathlon so I like to think of myself as being competitive. I even go as far as thinking that I can qualify to Kona with zero difficulty if I wanted to (here, I said it!). That is some serious self-confidence people. 

Just think of it, I have never done a tri in my life and I went to my first one with the expectation (not hope, I was not hoping for a good result, I was confident I can deliver a good result) to finish first or somewhere around there. And eventhough I did not win, it did not shake my confidence one bit (mostly because I knew the lack of run training shows and I knew I can improve on my swim if I swim longer than 6 months). 

I know that it is not “right” or a “decent” humble way to think about oneself and I know that I sound like an arrogant jerk but I am just being honest here. I am not an arrogant jerk, I am a nice person, believe me. I am just nice in other things, not when it comes to believing in myself.

And I do know that I really have no valid reasons to think that I am competitive but I cannot help it since I have not been proven wrong. (That’s a paradox, I am reasonable enough to know that I have no reason to believe that I am fast but I still am not reasonable enough not to think that I am fast/or rather can be fast if only I was able to put in consistent run training. So that makes me semi-reasonable.) But I do want to find out the “truth”! (Truth sounds like a too strong word here but I do not know that else to use)

Maybe I will find out on Aug 19th, because the girl who won last year is the German age-group Oly distance champion and if German age-groupers are like German pros than maybe we can call the race competitive. But I still have a small problem with the “honestness” of this race and that’s my lack of training. If I get dropped on a bike like a bad habit I will still be able to say that it is because of my lack of training. And the run…we all know the story. 

Therefore I want to do a competitive race for which I will be able to train properly. It is not that I want get chewed and spit out (who wants that, right? We all want to win), it is just that I really want to know where I stand compared to really fast people. 

I want to do a race after which I will be able to form an honest opinion about my abilities. A race where I will get my butt kicked big time and which will put into my place (or that will prove that I indeed am right thinking that I can be fast. Either one of those. I prefer option number two of course.) 

And therefore I am thinking about signing up for Eagleman 70.3 or Buffalo Springs 70.3 next year.
It attracts very fast people (because they are among few remaining HIM Kona qualifiers)and both courses should be challenging. Perfect opportunity to eat some humble pie. Eagleman would suit me better because it is flat and I think that Mt Vernon, IL (where I will be hopefully living starting October) is flat. But Lubbock, TX is closer and my sister lives half-way between TX and IL. 

Both races are during out peak-period so I might have problem with getting vacation. Buffalo Springs has “refund policy” in case my stupid ITB decides to act up or I do not get vacation.
Basically everything points out to TX race being better for me but those hills. Not sure I can survive that in one piece if I cannot train on hills.

Ahhh, what the hell! You know what? I am single, employed, no commitments so this is the time I can “afford” to do stupid (aka adventurous) things. So I am emailing Buffalo Springs people to see whether it is when a Kona 2013 qualifier and if it is I am in. If it is not, I am in for Eagleman.

PS: I do realize that there are other ways to get my a$$ handed to me, like for example doing a full IM because with my lack of respect for anything (mainly for distance) I know that I would be schooled properly. But my ITB struggle made me too wimpy to even think about doing IM in a near future. And I really want to try 70.3 distance.


  1. Yes! Go do a big 70.3 that is a qualifier. That's where you'll have real competition. :)