Training for Tuesday: Adapt.

I've talked a lot recently about a book I've been reading (for, erm, the last 4 months) called How Bad Do You Want It? by Matt Fitzgerald, who both competes in and writes about endurance sports. The book explores the concept of "mind over matter" by detailing both experienced athletes' anecdotes and the science that backs them up. One of those athletes is Willie Stewart, a promising young rugby player and wrestler who lost his left arm in an accident at the construction job he was working on shortly after graduating from high school. A few years later, a friend of the family invited him to run a 5k race, thinking it would help with the depression and lack of direction he'd been suffering from since his accident. That run, coupled with seeing the TV coverage of Ironman Hawaii 1982 (arguably the most famous Ironman finish in history), gave him the inspiration to go out, buy a triathlon suit, jump in a river, and start swimming. With one arm. In 2002, Willie finished in the top third in a field of 1600 of the world's best triathletes at Kona. With one arm.

Sunday Sweats 2016 - Vol. 13

I Am The Luckiest: Shamrock Half Marathon 2016 Recap

Shamrock weekend, the highlight of my running year, has come and gone for the 5th year in a row. I've been looking forward to this for months, and like any good runner, I stalked for the two weeks leading up to Shamrock. Over those two weeks varying degrees of rain intensity were predicted, but up until Saturday night I held out hope that the predictions were wrong (you know, because historically that has worked out so well for me). I had made peace with the fact that the 20-30mph winds weren't going anywhere, but I was still hopeful we might get lucky and the rain might hold off. In reality, the forecast just got worse and worse and by the time I checked the hourly forecast on the way to the race, it was calling for 100% chance of rain during the exact 2 hours we'd be running the half. 4, Tracy: 0.

Sunday Sweats 2016 - Vol. 12

Shamrock Half Marathon Race Prep

Ten days. Ten days left until my favorite race weekend of the year (which is what I say in the winter/spring...ask me in the summer/fall and I might say Wicked instead), and I'm not feeling as prepared as I'd like to. This year I chose to run the half marathon Shamrock and while I do have a time goal (that I'm not at all confident I can meet), my main goal is to show up and run the best race that I can. So with ten days left, it's time to focus. I can do anything for 10 days, right?

How I prepare for a race depends on a lot of different factors. Sometimes I've been planning and training for months and I spend the week or two before creating a detailed plan for every aspect of it. Other times I sign up just 48 hours in advance and don't even get into town until 8 hours before I need to run. Most of the time I fall somewhere between, and I usually try to at least follow these simple preparatory steps that I'll be employing over the next 10 days as I get ready to run Shamrock for the 5th time.