Turn That Frown Upside Down! by Coach Sami

That run was sooooo slow.  I felt awful on that swim.  Gosh, everyone passed me on the bike.  I can’t seem to finish strong.  As Type A athletes we are constantly pushing ourselves to the limit and to be the best that we can be.  We compare ourselves to our competitors and constantly push ourselves to qualify for different races; however, I am here to remind you that there is good in every race.  Every race is a learning experience and we never stop learning and we are always reminded of what we can improve.  So, I sat down as I was getting ready to write this and counted up how many triathlon events I have completed.  Holy cow, 53 triathlons (give or take a few) and that includes 21 ½ iron distance races and 7 Ironman events.  So, how did I miss the turnaround at the Charleston Sprint??  What…

I was excited to go to Charleston and watch my athlete’s race and be there for them, but at the same time I’ve had some ups and downs this year and was excited to race myself.  The sprint, let’s do it.  I registered, packed my bags and yes, I did glance at the course maps, but thinking it’s only 13-14 miles, I can follow the pack.  Well, guess what….I raced open and so I was at the front chasing some very fast guys.  I made the right turn and started looking for a sign, a volunteer, anything to indicate the turn-around.  I glanced at my Garmin and soon I was up to 9 miles.  OK, I thought to myself, I’ve gone too far, but I still wasn’t sure if I should turn around?  Maybe they changed the course.  Intuition finally kicked in and I turned around with the guys in front of me.  As we passed what was the real turnaround we shouted out, what happened?  You know what truly happened…we missed the turnaround; yes, there should have been signs and we often take the volunteers for granted, but WE missed the turnaround.  23 miles later we rolled up to T2.  We looked at each other and I said, “Guys, we go run because you always finish.”  We did.

So, why “turn that frown upside down” because I can look at it as I had a really slow bike and placed far down in the pack or I averaged an incredible speed for 23 miles!  I’ll take it!!  There are always positives to be had in every race.  Your run was slower than you expected, but you ran the entire race!  The swim felt awful, but there was no panic and no stopping.  Everyone passed you on the bike, but guess what you outran them at the end because you conserved your energy.  Take away the positives and don’t forget all the hard work that you put in to improve.  That is what carries you over past the triathlon world.  And of course…ALWAYS STUDY THE COURSE MAPS!!

Off to tackle “the Beast” and what is known as one of the most difficult courses in the triathlon world.  I will look it in the eye as I begin the day and the joy of racing and being out there with friends will take over.  Here come the islands, but first I gotta go packJ  And, I have studied the course maps!