One of my favorite, high-calorie, post-long ride snacks is a peanut butter, nutella and banana sandwich on whole grain bread. When I've been on my bike for more than 3 hours (or 4..or more...) I allow myself this delicacy. Calorically I probably deserve it, but there is a mental and emotional side to this too: when I've put my bum and undercarriage through hell, my mouth and tastebuds deserve a bit of heaven as a reward.
I'm sharing all of this because Thursday was likely my last 3+ hour ride of the season. Which means that the delicious sandwich I consumed that evening was maybe the second to last (the last being after my race next weekend!) I deserve in 2012. Maybe I'll do something for which I allow myself that kind of reward, but it definitely won't be as regular of a treat as it has been for the past few months.
This realization was almost enough to make me vow to complete some sort of crazy cycling endurance event over the winter.
Right now I am actually in a love/hate relationship with my bike. Once again I've found that the saddle I thought maybe I could learn to love has turned into an instrument of torture. Sitting on it for more than an hour at a time is more uncomfortable than it should be. At the end of a long ride it's damn near excruciating. I hate that thing. So maybe the vow will be to save up enough money for a new fit and saddle. And I'll just have to forgo those sandwiches till next season winds up...
But I am getting so far ahead of myself!
In less than a week I will be out on the half-iron battlefield, trying to capture a new PR and finally nail this distance to the wall. The previous two half distance races I've done have not been stellar performances, the first due to nutritional mistakes and the second due to serious heat and humidity. Having figured out the nutrition, and having scheduled a half in October, I am hoping that I can pull together everything I have learned through this season of triathlon (complete with coaching!) and put out one great performance!
This is also a make or break performance for the half distance race itself. The distance has to treat me better this time, or else I might break up with it. Having two other, not-so-enjoyable experiences under my belt with this distance, I am contemplating leaving it out of my repertoire. I love sprints. The Olympic distance has been courting me for some time and has finally won me over. But the half? The half has yet to prove we're meant for each other.
I am ready to put it all out there and see what I come up with. And if it doesn't go well, I'm ready to cut my losses and specialize in the shorter distances. This year I basically sacrificed podium finishes in the shorter distances in order to set myself up for two halves. I want some hard wear people! And if halves won't do it for me, I'll move back down!
All that being said, I am really excited to race. I love racing and I want to see what I can really do. So keep your fingers crossed.
Great run today, btw. Even if it was rainy. I love the fall.