Today I'll give you a few of the videos about the Ironman. Then I'll give you my goals for the next week.
The first video (Video #1) is just an Ironman overview type video, a trailer maybe. This is the video I watch every day. The opening narration is absolutely why I'm shooting to doing this, "The Ironman is every person trying to find out what he can do." It gets me into that competition mentality. Then the video of the swim, the bike, and the run with the pump-you-up music really gets me in the mindset of knowing "Kurt, this is gonna' be incredibly difficult, but you know you're gonna' do it." Finally, at 1:47/1:48 when they start showing people cross the finish line, everything comes together. I know a lot of people will find it odd that people would feel this way, but watching people cross that finish line just gives me SO much of a rush. That's why this is the video I watch every day.
From there we'll dive straight into a heartbreaking story about a specific set of competitors that I remember seeing on tv back when I was a kid (Video #2 and Video #3). Every summer, they televised the Kona, Hawaii race and while I can't believe that these guys ever actually did that specific race (you have to qualify specifically for it), I'm sure it must have been videos LIKE this one that they had shown during the Kona race.
These kind of touch on two points. First, it's incredible to think - if you aren't already in the sports field - that so many people with so many different levels of ability are out doing such a grueling race. We're bred from high school to think that all the sporty people are well built jocks who can out-compete everyone, that they're the young crowd and twindle out as they get older. But I'll be the first to tell you that in the triathlons I've raced in, I've watched people three times my age (I'm 24 years old) pass me. That's right, PASS me. It really brings home the fact that you are what limits you set for yourself. If you have no limits, then what you can do is endless. If you are restricted by the world's social conscious and buy into stereotypes and norms, then you will always be battling those self-imposed limits.
Secondly, if you watch the second video, especially from 4:27 on, you get a taste of just how inspirational these two have been to not only the physically or mentally challenged, but to the every type of person. It honestly chokes me up to listen to her read that letter, to know that a single person just trying to help make their son's life the best it can be has given everyone else an example to live by. I wish that was more of the every day case in this world and I hope someday to be able to look back and say that I've had that effect one even just one person.
But ok, enough of the emotional. Time to show you the real risk of this type of race. Here's a video (Video #4) of two women coming to the finish line of an Ironman who have literally worn their bodies down to the very last drop. I wish I knew the stats, but all I can say is that there are a LOT of people who enter this race and never finish. It's awe inspiring, emotional, and such a thrill, but if you don't know what you're doing, you really are putting your life on the line.
Here's another (Video #5) that I think is just INCREDIBLE. People will push themselves to their absolute limit and the risk in this race is that you've brought together a lot of people really willing to test how far they can push it. I do not envy the medical teams on hand for any Ironman event.
And then there are plenty of training videos (Video #6). That video is one exemplifying the extent of training that people take on to really compete in these races. And then remember that most of these people not only have their training to focus on, but also their full time job, their significant other, their kids, and then whatever you might classify as a social life, HA!
So those are some videos I've kept tabbed on my browser. They keep me motivated and keep me within a realistic mindset that this isn't just choosing to pay the registration and show up. If I want to start AND finish, this is gonna' take a lot of work. I thankfully don't have children or a significant other to split time with, but I certainly do have a job that tends to take 50-60 hours/week. So we'll see how well I'm able to keep up with my goal for training.
This brings me to the next week. I'm going on vacation (yay!), but I can't let myself not do SOME type of training. I'm heading to visit a friend who is a runner and the running portion of my tri is the weakest. So my goal now that my tri season is over is focus on doing some running competitions. So while I want to do maybe half a dozen 5ks, a few 10ks and then see if I feel up for a half marathon come October, I need to jump back into training (I took a week off after my last olympic this past Sunday to rest my ankle and finish a project for work).
My goals for the next week while I'm away.
1. Run at least a 5k every day I'm on vacation (should be 7 or 8 days, so a total of 35-40k). I'd love to get my friend to push me out closer to 10 or 15k, maybe even hit 21k (13.1 miles; a half marathon). I know the distance from where I'm staying to the beach is about 7-8 miles, so that'd be a great run-swim-run opportunity.
2. Fit in one good full swim session or take time for 3-4 days to get in the water and stretch back out
3. I need to work on stretching and keeping my body from cramping, so I'm going to enlist some help in finding stretches that will help do that. I'm quite a flexible person compared to most to begin with, so I've always found stretching to be difficult to feel benefit from until I'm halfway into some serious distance.
4. Find some new healthy recipes to bring back into my repertoire. I need help finding easy and tasty ways of getting more protein into my diet for recovery when I really get into training.
That's it - my inspirational (and informative) videos as well as my goals for the next week. If I'm not able or motivated enough to get online this next week (I tend to find I don't get on while I'm on vacation; I'm actually a very anti-tech person when I'm on my own time), I will plan on being back on here as of the 5th of September.
Enjoy the weekend everyone and don't eve stop testing your limits!!