A few months ago, I started daydreaming about the Lake to Lake Triathlon, a beauty of a race that is about an hour's drive north of my house. I did the Olympic distance race six (seven? eight?) years ago, and parts of the bike portion are still clear in the cranium-shaped cobweb that sits atop my neck.
I just remember looking at the wide sky, speckled with cloud and rays of sunlight, as I pedaled along and thinking, "This is exactly where I am supposed to be right now."
I don't have that experience often, and while it might be a rainy race day in 2019, I'm intrigued by the idea of at least pedaling the course again.
I also might be missing structured training a little bit; it's been over six months since Katie and I finished Swim Run: Casco Bay, and we spit-balled that training a bit.
I'm not positive I miss the must-do-this-workout today part of it, but I am positive I miss a directed plan, the structure that takes me from where I am today to a finish line in a few months.
Plus, I've realized I really like showing up at master's swimming practices with no idea what the workout is, and simply just doing it. No anxiety about pulling a hard set or take a few seconds off the rest time on a set of 50s. The coach said to do it, the people in my lane are doing it, I just do it. I'd have more of that feeling on a plan.
As you might know by now, I tend to jump in the deep end when a daydream persists. If I do Lake to Lake, the cranium-shaped cobweb says, then I'll be in good enough triathlon shape to...and I create lists of things that fit with Lake to Lake.
This situation is no exception. I made a to-do summer list, but I didn't check it twice until I sat down with Grant and a calendar and realized the 2019 Lake to Lake is the same day as the performances of Hunchback of Notre Dame, put on by Rocky Mountain Theater for Kids. The son will have some kind of role in it—likely two roles: one a bigger role, one a chorus role, which alternate between performances—but that's all I know.
I also realized I am probably trying to do too much—and that I haven't really committed to any one thing yet.
So I'm in a state of limbo and asking for your help:
In the comments below, please choose your top 2 or 3 events for my summer athletic activities.
June 2: Elephant Rock Ride: 100K
• Planning on riding with Grant; pre-kids, riding bikes together was our version of a date. I miss that, and so does he.
• I did the 100-mile ride as a training ride for Ironman CDA in 2014, and I do not think back fondly on it. I remember the second half as a slog I would not like to redo. The route for 100K—66 miles—veers from the 100-mile route, so I don't have to redo it, but can have a better memory of Elephant Rock, an institution around the two-wheeled parts of Denver.
• Training for this will force me to get outside on my bike, hopefully with Grant. Fresh air and sunshine always trumps stale, inside air of my basement or the gym.
• I really can't think of any, except that it's been at least three (four?) years since I've ridden that far on my road bike.
June 22: Lake to Lake Olympic Triathlon: 1.5K swim,
30-mile bike, 10K run
• See above. I'm craving this race.
• Scheduling; if Ben has a bigger role in the 1 pm performance, say, It's gonna be tight. (And I'm going to be wiped.)
• I could do the sprint distance and cut the race time in at least half, but I'm not interested in doing that; it feels too far to drive—and too early of an alarm—for that.
• A 10k run feels like a pretty big (and possibly stupid?) stretch, given my 5K-max situation. My usual running these days is 3-4 miles, 2x a week. I would probably maintain the twice a week part, and then, closer to race day, up the distance, through a run/walk pattern, to 5.5 or so miles. Like I said, possibly—and likely—stupid.
June 22: Tribella Women's Triathlon: .5 mile swim, 10-mile bike, 5K run
• Same day as Lake to Lake, but sprint distance and super close: I could commute to the race on my bike.
• I love Tribella, a women-centric triathlon shop, and I know the atmosphere at the race will be so encouraging and warm.
• It feels a little meh compared to Lake to Lake.
• I haven't ridden Lyle, my tri-bike, in years. I retired him to the garage about 2.5 years ago, when my back and leg wouldn't shut up. I don't know if the aero position will still cause pain. I can certainly get help with the fit of it, and I would, but I also am not sure if I want to truly know that chapter of my athletic life is over.
• The 5K is on a concrete bike path, which does my body no favors.
July 13: Tri the Boat Aquabike: 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike
• This possibility—basically a Half-Ironman without the half-marathon tacked on at the end—also has the butterflies a twitter in my belly: a good thing.
• Steamboat is one of my favorite spots in 'rado, and my memory of the Steamboat Half-Marathon, another beauty, also lives in the cranium-shaped cobweb. We'd make a family weekend out of it.
• I'd have the momentum from Elephant Rock to continue to ride the bike; and since the bike portion ends the race, I could really go for it.
• See above: The Lyle issue.
July 20: Denver CF Climb: 3,865 Steps in Bronco Stadium
• This just looks fun to me—and remember, it doesn't have to be fun to be fun.
•One summer plan I know for sure is to climb 14'er with Jo and Jess, my Grand Canyon pals, in early August and this would be a good little training romp around a stadium.
• I could maybe (maybe?) talk one of my kids into doing this with me.
• It's likely going to be HOT, and there's no swim portion to cool things down.
• I would just wing it, training-wise. No biggie, in theory, except that system can be a little hard for the ego on event day. (I would not look this woman flying up the stairs.)
Horsetooth Open Water Swim: 1.2 or 2.4 miles
• I've heard about this event for a few years, and it's always piqued my interest.
• I could possibly talk Katie, my swim/run pal, into doing this with me, a friend always exponentially improves any race situation, even if you can't chat in the water.
• As Katie can attest, my open-water swimming—or specifically, my sighting skills—could definitely improve.
• If I don't feel ready for 2.4 miles, I could opt for 1.2, which is what I'd be doing in July in Steamboat.
• I'm not sure what our fall schedule will look like yet, so this may be a no-go based on volleyball or acting or some other unforeseen event.
• I'd need to spend time in open water to practice; I don't mind doing that—it's what Katie and I did last summer—but it is a commitment, time-wise. It's about an hour round-trip to Chatfield reservoir during the busy month of August.