I haven’t really been posting that much about my race schedule or race updates this year because, well to be honest, there hasn’t been any. It is the end of April and I have yet to lace up for any race this year. Not a marathon, half marathon, triathlon, or even a 5k. I think this is the first time in about 5 years that I don’t have a race under my belt this late in the year. It’s a little weird for me but I haven’t really missed it so much. I know I have a few races coming up and ones that I’m looking forward to, so maybe I’m just focused on that.
As for my next (first) race, it was exactly 1 month from this past weekend. As I mentioned a few months ago, I qualified for the Rev3 Age Group Championships in Knoxville May 18th. Since my ranking is in the top 10 nationally, I am racing the event. If I was ranked any lower, I wouldn’t go since there would be no way of me breaking the top 5 in the country and just see it as a way to get people to come to their events. But since I am ranked and know that at least 2 people ahead of me are not racing, I have a decent chance to hit one of my goals for the year.
So the logical question I asked myself at the month mark was, “Am I ready for the race”? Not having raced this year, I don’t have a benchmark to go off of. And not having a race to prepare for this race, I’m going in blind. I don’t like doing that and pretty nervous for the little things that go on in a race. Things like nutrition, transition, packing the right items, etc. All are important but don’t fall into a category of swimming, biking, or running. I’m pretty confident that by now I know what to pack and how to fuel my body for the race, but I would have liked to get a test run beforehand.
The biggest fear I have is that this is the first race that I am going to be packing up my bike and bringing it with me. This means that I need to disassemble it and put it back together when I get there. I have no clue what I’m doing. Literally, no clue. I have this vision that I wont put the bike back together properly and I will break down in the middle of the race. I keep watching videos, going into bike shops to talk to them, but this will definitely be trial by fire.
Finally, I need to ask am I ready to race the distance. I haven’t taken my bike off my Kickr yet since I feel like I am getting so much better workouts, but I definitely need to get some outdoor rides in, like ASAP. I’ve logged 2 plus hours on the bike so I know I can handle the time, but its so different being on a trainer and being outside. It’s a 40 mile bike which should put me somewhere in the 1:43-1:54 range depending on the course and how I’m pushing it but I still need to get outside to prove to myself that I can do it.
Then comes the run. A month ago I would have said it’s a piece of cake. I was clocking off unofficial PR’s for a half marathon and still feeling good. Now, I’m getting so bored on runs and still having good times, but I feel like I’m regressing. For me to be competitive in this race, I have to be able to run around a 6:20 mile for the 10 miles. I can do it, and have done it for longer distances, but everything changes race day. Previewing the course, it looks to be relatively flat and I have been training on the hills of Central Park and averaging about 6:18 miles for anything between 6-13 miles so I hope that translates to being able to handle what the race throws at me.
So basically I have about 10 days to finish off my training before I have to start my tapering. In my mind I have to have a really good long run this weekend, and then a good long bike the next day. If I can pull that off this weekend, then I think I’ll be able to tell myself that I am ready and that I should start focusing on race day workouts and specific that I need to go over. But until then, I have to ask myself if I’m ready for the race.