Reflections on a Triathlon

Hello! Yay! It’s Friday! If yesterday I felt like I hadn’t accomplished much I totally made up for it today!

I got up at 5am (crazy I know!) to run with Brian. He was going to run after work but it is terribly hot today and I suggested he go in the morning and I would go with. This was a fabulous idea because then I was up and ready to go tackle my “to do” list. I practiced some Zumba moves before breakfast. Then I prepped for a Group Strength class  I was teaching today. I wrote my last paper for grad school and polished up the other papers I have due next week. I ran a few errands and got home in time for a healthy lunch before heading off to teach Group Strength and practice some more Zumba at the Y in front of the big mirrors! I just got out of shower, started some laundry and sat down to chill. I’ll admit I am a little tired!

Since it has been almost a week since my triathlon I have had some time to think about the experience. I really loved training for an Olympic distance tri. It was a good challenge but also manageable, I could fit the workouts into my life without too much trouble. I also felt my training fully prepared me for the triathlon. What I didn’t expect while doing the triathlon was the caliber of the other triathletes doing the Olympic distance. Many of the other triathletes are training for Ironman and this triathlon was a practice run for them. They had some pretty high tech triathlon gear like aerodynamic helmets like this one.

(Source)

This was a little intimidating. I was more use to doing “friendly” triathlons that were not as competitive. I did not do this race with the idea that I would place in my age category. I did it because I wanted to see if I could and to just to say that I did it. I feel very proud of myself for even accomplishing the triathlon. Last year I was close to placing in the sprint and I think I could have placed in the sprint distance this year so I held out a little hope that I would place but it was not to be. This does give me a good goal to work for next year.

I feel like training and doing the triathlon made me very physically fit. The fact that I recovered so quickly is a testament to that. So many people told me there was not way they could even think about doing something like that. Even though I feel very proud of my accomplishment there is something that is bothering me. After watching the video footage and looking at photos for a very long time I came to realize something. I look…well…big! I’m not saying that you have to be at your ideal weight to do a triathlon. I mean they even have divisions for “heavier” athletes (Clydesdale (men) Athena (women)). I even considered racing in the Athena category because I knew I would probably place but I wanted to see how I would do in my age category. The truth is this is probably the heaviest I’ve been doing a triathlon. I am not at my heaviest weight. I am definitely not at my lightest. Most importantly I am NOT at a healthy weight. I do think that you can be fit and not thin but that isn’t necessarily a good thing. I was afraid to admit it but my weight could have been the reason I suffered from a few injuries during my training. I know from my certifications in group exercise that exercise and fitness are important to your over all health and they certainly help with weight loss BUT food is also a huge part of weight loss. During my training I tended to got with the mind set that since I was burning soooooooo MANY calories I could eat whatever I wanted. I ate pretty healthy but my portions were a little out of control at times. And there might have been one too many indulgences here and there. I didn’t lose any weight while training and I also haven’t gained any weight since quitting Weight Watchers last November. I still feel I need to work on getting to a healthy weight as I train for my upcoming half marathons. I think that it will make training easier and also improve my performance.

So, what am I going to do? For starters I am going to be more diligent about tracking my calories on SparkPeople. I’ve only been half assed doing that. I will not be denying myself “treats” but working on the idea of moderation. I do have a lot of “challenges” coming up and I will need to have plans for each one of those especially since calorie counting might not be an option. I see how other bloggers eat in moderation and I KNOW I can do that too. I am also going to try and incorporate more strength training into my fitness routine. I did some with the triathlon training but I don’t think I really worked every muscle group. I will be trying to do Group Strength classes at the Y or my own strength program at least two times per week. I know that toning will give me a better look overall and help me to increase my metabolism. I will be sure to keep you posted on my progress! I don’t really feel comfortable sharing numbers because that’s not what this blog is all about. It’s about being healthy and living life!

So these are the thoughts that have been going through my head! Oh yes! And the fact that I have been toying with the idea of half Ironman at some point in my future! We’ll see how my half marathons go!

We’re going out to eat tonight with my in-laws to celebrate their June birthdays and tomorrow we’re hosting a Father’s day cookout at out house! Hope you have a fun weekend!

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4 responses to “Reflections on a Triathlon

  1. Pingback: When It’s Worth It « The Girl With The Pink Sneakers

  2. Why not race Athena?! Athena women = strong & powerful!!!

    • I honestly considered it, if only to place an get a medal 🙂 but since it was my first time doing and Olympic Distance Tri I wanted to see how my time compared with others in my age category. There was only one Athena doing the Oly and she rocked! I know her from my cycling classes and she was an animal on the course. Totally blew my time out of the water. Really inspired me to embrace the body I have! Thanks for the comment!

  3. Pingback: 3 Month Weight Loss Update | The Girl With The Pink Sneakers

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