1. Well, I'm 9 days out from my A race, so what am I doing? Why, I'm sitting in a physical therapist's office crying again, that's what. My bruised foot has returned to normal but my cranky lat has exploded into a stiff neck crunchy shoulder back spasming mess. I skipped last Friday's swim. Saturday it was all pretty cranky but Sunday it actually started to feel better. Monday morning I woke up and could move, so I went ahead with the swim on my schedule, although I kept the intensity very low throughout. The rest of Monday, my lats and shoulders felt tired and sore - the way they usually do after a long swim - but nothing hurt. Tuesday I saw my PT, and he moved lots of things around, and Tuesday night everything just exploded. The original issue was that I had a rib out of alignment which was making my lat spasm, but now my ribs are all back where they belong and the spasm hasn't ended. The pain is traveling up from my lat into my upper back and neck, and anything having to do with my neck just makes me nervous. I'm taking my usual approach of throwing every resource I have at it, but I'm not happy. I've cut down 2 swims and missed 2 swims at this point, and it looks like I'm going to miss most of the rest before race day. The annoyance is that I could probably pull a race out on it - the pain isn't prohibitively bad - but the wait is killing me. I have been swimming really well this cycle and I feel like I'm watching it all go out the window. I essentially started my swimming "taper" 3 weeks before race day, and that's way too far out. It's not a world-ending race-canceling kind of injury, and I'm trying really hard to focus on the big picture - at least I can bike and run - but I'm still pretty pissed that I can't even get through one training cycle without something catastrophic going wrong right before race day.
2. The good news of the day is that I chose a bike last week, ordered it, and now it's here. I'm hoping to get fit today, but the question of the hour is: do I ride it at Waterman's? A few notes: on my roadie, I'm really comfortable and spend a lot of time in my drops, so I feel like there is less of a position-adjustment to deal with that usual. I've got my last "long" ride this weekend, and about 4 other rides spaced out before race day. I'm concerned that there may be a significant amount of neuromuscular relearning that needs to happen on a different bike that may affect the run, plus the last thing I need to do is crash because I'm not used to drunken aero steering yet. However, the course is the opposite of technical - very few turns, lots of room, not a lot of climbing - and actually lends itself pretty well to a "first" aero race. So, triathletes, boss me around. What would you do?
3. We're now close enough to the race that I can start stalking to forecast. Right now it looks pretty fine, and I have a lot of hope that this funky muggy humid weather will have blown through by then. I can so clearly remember this day last year. Last year on October 8th, I woke up, put on some bike clothes, and went out for my first ride post-knee-surgery. It was a ridiculously gorgeous morning - sunny and breezy and cool, and I can so clearly remember how light-hearted I felt to be riding again.
Sometimes looking back is good. A year ago, I was recovering from surgery. I couldn't ride, I couldn't run, and I couldn't swim. So I might be dealing with a cranky back right now, but next weekend, no matter what's going on, I will be rocking the hell out of every single one of those 70.3 miles. That's what can happen in a year.