Friday, June 19, 2009

On Repeat

I think I've listened to this song about 50 times today. I love the lyrics. It's a Drive-By Truckers song, from the Southern Rock Opera album.

(Cooley / DBT)

Your Daddy was mad as hell
He was mad at me and you
As he tied that chain to the front of my car and pulled me out of that ditch that we slid into
Don't know what his problem is
Why he keeps dragging you away
Don't know why I put up with this shit
When you don't put out and Zip City's so far away

Your Daddy is a deacon down at the Salem Church of Christ
And He makes good money as long as Reynolds Wrap keeps everything wrapped up tight
Your Mama's as good a wife and Mama as she can be
And your Sister's puttin' that sweet stuff on everybody in town but me
Your Brother was the first-born, got ten fingers and ten toes
And it's a damn good thing cause He needs all twenty to keep the closet door closed

Maybe it's the twenty-six mile drive from Zip City to Colbert Heights
Keeps my mind clean
Gets me through the night
Maybe you're just a destination, a place for me to go
A way to keep from having to deal with my seventeen-year-old mind all alone
Keep your drawers on, girl, it ain't worth the fight
By the time you drop them I'll be gone
And you'll be right where they fall the rest of your life

You say you're tired of me taking you for granted
Waiting' up till the last minute to call you up and see what you want to do
Well you're only fifteen, girl, you ain't got no secretary
And "for granted" is a mighty big word for a country girl like you
You know it's just your Daddy talking
Cause He knows that blood red carpet at the Salem Church of Christ
Ain't gonna ever see no wedding between me and you

Zip City it's a good thing that they built a wall around you
Zip up to Tennessee then zip back down to Alabama
I got 350 heads on a 305 engine
I get ten miles to the gallon
I ain't got no good intentions

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Does this make me a bad triathlete?

Today's Stats:

Sleep: 6 hours (pretty good for me)
Workout: 2850 yd master's swim. 57 minutes.
Breakfast: 2 Pop Tarts, 20 oz Diet Dr. Pepper
Snack: Powerbar Harvest Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip bar
Lunch: 6" Subway Club on wheat w/ swiss, all the veggies. Cheddar Sun Chips. 32oz Diet Coke
Snack 2: Vending Machine Crackers
Dinner: Rubio's bean and cheese burrito, chips, 22 oz Diet Coke.

I'm listing this for a reason, not to boast about my crappy eating habits. I've been going to these noon master's workouts every Wednesday for a month. Yes, today was my fourth time. I typically get to split the lane, though I did have to circle my first time.

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you may remember me posting about pool work earlier in the year, before things started going squirrelly. I was zeroing in on 3500 yards in an hour. At a minimum, I was hitting 3000. Today is the first time I've come anywhere close to that in a good long while, and I feel pretty good about it. I mean, the coach's workouts are tough, and I'm still learning all this base pacing stuff, but that's where the point of this post comes into play.

Since I started into this whole triathlon adventure, I've done a lot of things I never thought I would ever try. A half marathon. Two, soon to be three half Iron tris. 9 other triathlons. Several layers of goofball workout that I don't even want to think about. Along the way, I've learned a lot about myself, both what makes me tick physically and mentally, and how I relate to this bizarre world I inhabit. I've met loads of people, many of whom I'm lucky enough to call friends and some even good friends. I wouldn't trade any of this for the world, believe me.

So what am I on about?

During this time, I've also gone through my periods of obsession, where all I think and talk about is practically triathlon. Where I count calories and schedule my training sessions to the minute. I've had periods where I swing the pendulum all the way across and drink too much and stop sleeping and eat like a jackass. What I've learned so far is that none of this really affects my ability to race. I can swim and bike as hard as I want. I may gain a minute or lose two, but I never move the needle too far. My runs are getting better as my foot heals and I see good things in the future.

But now I'm weeks away from Vineman, my second half of the year, and while I originally wanted it to be my "A" race, the one I just killed, I find that now I don't care so much. I know I can finish it. I know how I'd like to do, but I also know that if I don't do it I won't be heartbroken. Frankly, I'm getting in touch with my motivations in the sport and they aren't what I thought they were.

I had a talk with Mark a week or so ago and I was telling him about some workouts I'd been doing with people who weren't as fast as me or didn't have the same endurance. Usually, I just hang anyway. He got a little concerned that I was sacrificing my training. I probably am, but the thing is, I know that if I set my mind to it, I'll finish the damn race. I learned that at Wildflower this year. I'll just get it done on race day. I might not do it as fast as maybe I can but I'm a pretty simple machine. Point me in a direction, turn me loose and I'll find the end of the path.

What I'm learning is that I don't care so much about my times. I don't care about my position in the field. I care about what I do on the way to the race. Who I train with and get to know. Who I can help to meet whatever goals they have. Mostly, I find that what I care about is that I enjoy the time I put into it and the people I spend that time with. As long as that's going on, the racing seems to take care of itself.

So you tell me, does that make me a bad triathlete? Should I be more gung-ho about the numbers? Should I be charging for a podium that I'll never reach, or am I onto something? Maybe my mind will change after Vineman and I start gearing up for 2010. Maybe not. I sure as hell don't know, but I'm having a lot of fun with the puzzle.