It’s been a few days since I’ve blogged, but I’m still training! I just suffered a bit of a setback two weeks ago when I crashed a bike I was test riding. I took three days off, tried walking one day, and that still hurt, so I took another three days off. I still haven’t hopped in the pool since, but I’m hoping I do that tomorrow.

Since I resumed my training on July 23, I’ve pushed my limits and have accomplished more than I thought I could.

On day 14, I biked 33 miles. Before my training, I didn’t bike more than a mile at one time. I was pretty sore after that, but I didn’t need any motivation to go that far.

Today was a whole different thing. Running. When I got on the treadmill, I told myself I was running three miles– without stopping. I’ve never gone that far without stopping before. I sprinted all throughout high school. Every time I had to run 600 meters without stopping in high school, I thought I was going to die. But today was going to be the day. I was going to push my limits.

Today’s motivation? Eric Berry, an NFL player I’ve had the luxury of interviewing. Back in November he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Today he was back on the practice field with his team.

After a mile and a half, I was dripping in sweat. I wanted to stop, but I kept going. I kept telling myself that EB didn’t quit. He didn’t stop. If he could return to football after beating cancer, I sure as hell could run three miles. Three miles is nothing.

It took me 37 minutes and seven seconds to finish what I started, but I did it. I averaged 12:33 per mile, but I did it. I was covered in sweat and smelled really gross. My feet were in a lot of pain, but I did it.

Can’t wait to be able to do five.

 

Going into my training, I thought that swimming would be my easiest third of my workouts. Man, was I wrong. I hopped in the water and I could barely finish a 50. It was hard to admit that I am very much so out of swim shape.

By the end of my workout, the longest I went without stopping was 150 yards. Considering I used to be a 400 yard IMer and 200 yard butterflyer, I have a long way to go. I’m still proud of myself that I racked up 1000 yards in 35 minutes.

After my workout, I went to Scheels and started looking at bikes. I really enjoyed one that I saw on paper, but I wanted to get on one, and Scheels didn’t have my size. (I’m apparently short. This is news to me.)

I went to a local bike shop, where they had one in my size. I went for a test ride. Only, unknowing to me at the time, the brakes were not properly functioning. I found that out as I was cruising toward a dumpster and the rear brake locked up.

I hit my head and right arm on the dumpster, resulting in a minor laceration and bruise on my arm, sustained some gnarly road rash on my left leg, along with taking off some skin on my knee, and opening up two areas on my right knee. The bike was fine though. I’ll be fine. I’m just banged up.

 

 

(If blood makes you queasy, I suggest not scrolling down much farther.)

My right arm and the least of my injuries.
My right arm and the least of my injuries.
My left leg.
My left leg.
My right leg.
My right leg.

 

Watching my best friend kick her first half-marathon's ass is what put the voice in my head that told me I needed to follow suit.
Watching my best friend kick her first half-marathon’s ass is what put the voice in my head that told me I needed to do something too. So, I’m doing it.

I knew I wanted to get into better shape while I was watching Charlene Schrock, my best friend, compete in her first half marathon. I just didn’t know how I wanted to go about it. I’ve always been a sprinter. A half-marathon? That’s crazy. I could never imagine myself running that far in one shot.

I was sitting at the back table at the Westerton Arms pub in Bridge of Allan, Scotland when I opened my Facebook. The first thing that showed up was a post from Rich Watson, someone I went to church with back when I lived in Funk. He had just completed his first IronMan Triathlon. Knowing Rich’s story, I told myself that I couldn’t make any more excuses for myself. I needed to get in better shape. (If you haven’t read Rich’s story, you need to. It’s remarkable the things he’s accomplished.)

The day I got home from Scotland, John Butler, one of my best friend’s older brothers, finished his first triathlon. That reaffirmed everything. If John and Rich can do it, I sure as well can do it too.

My eyes are on the Ad Astra Sprint Triathlon on September 27. I’ll sign up as soon as I can afford a bike. This specific Sprint Triathlon consists of 500 yards of open water swimming in Clinton Lake, 10 miles of biking around the lake, and a 3 mile run.

My end goal is an IronMan Triathlon. I realize that this will take a long time to get to, but I believe if I set my mind to it, I hopefully will be able to complete one by my 22nd birthday. That’s 70 weeks away.

My first day of training consisted of running for an hour. Like I said before. I’ve always been a sprinter. I don’t do distance. At least, I’ve never done it before. I couldn’t run for the whole time. I’m not in good enough shape to do that. Not yet. I ran for 15 minutes, walked for 15 minutes, ran for 15 minutes, walked for 10 minutes and sprinted for five. By the end of it all, I ran/walked 4.15 miles. That’s the longest I’ve ever gone… ever.

My second day of training was biking for an hour. Since I don’t have a bike, at least not yet, I went to the YMCA and hopped on a stationary bike instead. I managed to bike 13.39 miles in an hour. I can’t remember if I’ve ever biked that far before.

Two days in? So far so good. I know I have a long way to go, but we’ll see what happens throughout the rest of this first week.

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” – Jim Ryun