This post has been brewing a few days, as I have been trying to find the words to helpfully express my recent thoughts and experiences surrounding racing without my beloved technology.
After my experience at Door County, I was comfortable with the idea of racing sans technology. It wasn’t my preference, but it was reassuring to know that I’m not overly dependent upon it. After Tri-ing for Children’s this past weekend – those feelings are the same, but joining it is a feeling of uncertainty of not knowing how to feel about my race.
On the surface TFC appears as a sucess: I finished 4th overall with a great run split, a strong swim, but an average bike. Comparing my bike split to last years – where I took a small detour – and this year’s upgrade from Fluffy to Dexter – it’s pretty obvious that my bike wasn’t as strong this year or was it?
The course was basically the same and I don’t feel that the conditions where any different. So I can’t chalk it up to that. My weeks prior were fairly comparable – so I wouldn’t say there was a major difference in the amount of fatigue I was having to cope with.
My run split was much better than last year, so did I bike to hard last year and bike just right/to easy this year?
My swim probably started off a bit harder this year than last year as I attempted to swim with Will Smith – it did take me 30 minutes or so to start to feel “speedy” on the bike.
Why does this bother me so much – because I don’t have an objective way to determine what actually happened on my bike. All I have is the time/distance/feel – which those three combined leave me a bit unsatisfied about the bike.
So what does this whininess have to do with anything and how can you benefit from it?
Well you could interpret this as encouragement to run out and buy a powermeter so that you can objectively measure your bike rides – which I would encourage that, but that’s not the point.
The point is more along the lines of don’t always get caught up in the details of things – your energy is better spent on a broader focus. Me for example – TFC was a superb race for me as a whole this year. My swim was very strong, it was one of my best Olympic distance runs to-date (let alone this year + moved up a VDOT point) – I held off Joe Kurian on the run for longer than i did last year at this same race. As I was told by a commenter earlier – you don’t have to win all three legs to win the race – the same goes for great races. All three legs don’t have to be heroic for the race to be heroic.