Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Next Big Step

Hi everyone!

Where have I been you ask?  Well, I don't really have a good excuse for not blogging, but I have been here and everything is good! I post more frequently on FB, so if you have not liked my page yet, head on over and you won't miss anything!

Ok, so, where to begin? Well, I am in training for my first half marathon of the year, The Ocean's Run. I love this race so much! It was my first half marathon, the course is beautiful and it is so well run.  This year, I have a lot of friends running it, and I know we will all have a great time.

If you have the March edition of Runner's World, you may have seen it highlighted in the Calendar section. It was just so exciting to see this little race in RI featured in RW!  If you are local, you should definitely check it out!

Training for the Ocean's Run started out slow but is improving.  I am up to 8 miles and feeling really good.  My PF and heel spur are not really bothering me and I am hoping it stays that way. I am still going to PT, stretching like crazy, foam rolling, icing, rolling with a golf ball and sleeping with the Strassburg Sock.  That sock just screams sexy!

Now on to the big news.

A few weeks ago, Trimom Productions, who puts on the Ocean's Run and so many other cool races, had a contest on their FB page to name their next big race. They wanted the name to have "lots of local flavor" and the prize would be a free entry into the new race. However, the distance was not known yet to us.

It didn't take long for me to come up with the name Rhode Warrior (half, tri, dualaton, 5k) whatever it was going to be.  I was inspired by Mr. RWM's service to our Country and all of our service men and women. He is retired now but served for 25 years.  He flew the C-130's out of Quonset and on the side of their planes, our state is painted with the words Rhode Warriors across it.  It is a tough name that I think says it all!

The names were narrowed down to eight and then the voting began.  Friends, there were some really good ones and I did not think I had a chance.  Two days before the official announcement, I got an email saying I had won!

I was excited and then my nerves kicked in. What did I just win?  I emailed back asking, knowing it was a secret.  She responded right away with, HALF IRONMAN DISTANCE TRIATHLON!!!  It was not written in all caps, but that is how I saw it. The date, August 24, 2014.

I stood up and then sat back down. My hands started to shake and I was not sure what to say.  Mr. RWM and the kids were home.  It took me a minute to say to them, "I just won and entry into a half ironman."  Mr. RWM, who was walking out the back door said,  "Great, you can do it."  Just like that, calm, with no worries in his voice.

Honestly though, that is all I really needed. Having the support of my family is how I got through the marathon. They need to be on board just as much as you. I will, once again, be out for hours getting in my training. I will fall behind on things like laundry and dusting. Oh, who am I kidding, that wasn't my strong point anyway, but you all know what I mean.

I started to get excited again, but if you have been reading this blog for awhile, you know I have a fear of the water and drowning.  Now, these are irrational fears. Nothing ever happened to me to make me scared, I think I just didn't swim well and stopped.  It has been so long since I swam, I can't even tell you when it was.

Once the announcement was made, I started to tell people and asking questions. I have SO many!  The swim, of course, is my big concern, but my friend Bethany said she would work with me. She has taught swim at the Y and has a few tri's under her belt.  I was thrilled!

I am so happy to say that after our first session, I gained a whole new confidence. I did not sink and after a few minutes of panic, I put my head under the water.  It only took once to realize, I would be ok.  I was safe and I could do it again.  Before I actually swam, I used a board and made it to the other end of the pool.  I know this isn't much for most, but I got teary because I thought it was something that I could not do.

My big struggle is the breathing.  I have a long road ahead of me, but I want it! I want to finish this race and I will work my ass off to get to that finish line.

Trimom is also a great resource. They offer swim and bike clinics. I will take advantage of those as well.

A few friends have already registered, including Bethany, so we will be able to do some of the training together.  Also, there is a beginner swim start which will be the last wave. This is great and will definitely help this completely newbie triathlete.

So I am up for any and all advice.  Still looking at training plans and have not officially chosen one. I would love to hear your suggestions.

I know some of you may think this is a crazy jump, but with the support, proper training and my passion, I know I can do it.  It wasn't too long ago that three miles was impossible.  We all know where that led.

Ok, so here we go, the road to Triathlete began last week.  I would love to hear your thoughts on training plans, gear and your own personal experience.  Feel free to post here or on my FB page.

Let's do this!!!

Run Strong, Think Big! ~ Nicole