I've been thinking about Sunday's race and my big accomplishment on the run and it has me wondering: despite all my efforts to be a better swimmer and cyclist, will I always be primarily a runner? It's where I have the most experience even if I wasn't any good at it until recently. I'm still just average with occasional bursts that push me above middle of the pack, but it's the one sport where I keep going out and surprising myself. I feel like I've made huge improvements this year alone and I'm excited what I'll be capable of in the future.
But I haven't referred to myself as a runner in quite some time. Now I think of myself as a triathlete, even if triathlon season is over and I'm training for a marathon. However my age group ranking from Sunday tells a different story. There were 274 women in my division. I was the 136th woman to exit the water. After a decent effort on the bike I finished 52nd, a major improvement over the swim. But on the run, I was the 16th woman to finish. I had moved up from dead center to front of the pack.
What would I be capable of if I could improve in the other two sports? I've seen slight changes on the swim, but can't expect too much given I'm still a beginner. I feel stronger and more confident on the bike, but my speed isn't increasing much. I'm becoming more efficient and it's allowing me to have a strong run after, but it's not moving me up in the rankings. Perhaps after the Ironman I can focus on increasing my bike fitness so I can start next year with a more solid base.
I started today with an easy spin on the trainer and finished the day with a pretty good swim. I hate going to the pool at night but biking in the morning allowed me to get an extra hour of sleep, something fairly priceless these days. Ironically I saw two of the usual morning people at the pool and we all talked about how we never go at night since it's so crowded, yet we were all there at the exact same time. It was indeed packed and I had to do a lot of passing and drafting, but that's actually quite good for me and helps me develop better overall skills. I shared a lane with a girl who was at the pool for the first time. She asked me if she was doing alright because she didn't want to get in my way. I had a flashback to last year and realized that while my swim times may not be off the charts, I have certainly come a long way.
Distance - 15.14 miles
Time - 1:00:00
Distance - 2,400 yards
Time - 45:40