I know that taking a month off after CdA was important for me to do. I was afraid of getting burned out with only half the season behind me (and the rest of my life in front of me). I spent a lot of time in May on a bike looking forward to sleeping in and having Oreos for breakfast and I reveled in it. But a month was a long time, and by the end of it I was itching to get back in the swing of training. I know that is true.
I know that no matter how gently I eased back into training, my body was going to be pretty crabby about it for a while. Going from minimal activity - 30-60 minutes, if any, per day - back into what I would consider a fairly normal training schedule was always going to be a bit of a shock. That isn't making me less pissy about not being able to hit a lot of my workouts right now, but deep inside, I know it's going to be okay. And my body, it is in shock right now. Wide-eyed open-mouthed horrified terror about what the fuck has happened to the nice life with the naps and the cookies and the sex.
I know that I have a 70.3 in a few weeks and need to be doing appropriate training to have a good - or maybe even great - day there. Taking a month off meant I couldn't increase my time on the bike one mile per week. It instead means that I need to be yanked through the glass. Fitness by force.
I know that most of the time I need to just man up and get through the workout but sometimes, every once in a while, it's okay to crawl home with only half of it done and sleep for the next 18 hours. In a row. And I will not proudly hop on the internet and declare, "I LISTENED TO MY BODY" because I know that I want to punch people in the piehole for saying shit like that. And it wasn't really listening, anyway, it was more like giving in. Like letting the water close over your head and floating down into the dark.
I know that Sonja can't hear me when I stomp my little foot and say things like, "Today I am NOT getting on the bike for the 7th 3+ hour ride in two weeks SONJA," but I say it anyway. And then I get on the bike anyway.
I know that my fitness isn't gone, it is just in a valley from my layoff. A valley that would either take three months of base building or two weeks of soul-crushing workouts to rise up from. Guess which one I'm doing.
I know that laying in bed in the dark breathing through my nose to try and force my resting heart rate below 40 is not listening to the feedback I'm getting about how rested I am. But Restwise sure does like it when I plug in that 39.
I know that deep down, I'm actually really REALLY excited about racing this fall. It's just hard to remember that through the bleary haze of tired that I'm wandering around in during the few hours a day I'm not on my bicycle (what IS it with so much time on the bike this block???).
I know that sometimes all it takes for a ride to go from grumbly and hard to happy and chipper is stopping to pet the alpacas (and pee behind that farmer's mailbox).
I know that in about two weeks, I'll come out of the nasty funk slump I'm in. I'll start tapering for my race and my legs will perk up and I'll be able to stay awake later than 7pm and my voice will stop sounding like Darth Vader (bizarre side effect of being exhausted) and I won't be cursing Sonja's name when I look at my schedule on Tuesday morning (love you, Son, you know that, sorry about dragging your good name through the mud). I won't have to remind myself to blink or finish sentences. The ride where I rode so hard that I cooled down in aero with my head propped up on my water bottle because my arms were too weak to hold myself up on the bullhorns will be a distant memory. I'll be excited about being back in the swing of things, I'll be so ready to go out and just plain old fucking hurt myself, to see if I really can put the pieces all in the right order all at once all in one day.
I know that I do all of this because I love it. Because there's nothing better than the sound of you and your girlfriends clipping in and rolling out to explore on two wheels. Because no matter how much it hurts, to run across that finish line - be it ironman or the tiniest smallest sprint ever - and know that you turned yourself inside out - that is one of the great reasons to be alive. To have a life where you wake up and go run or ride or swim and then come back to the table to stuff yourself with pancakes and gasp over the details (your husband being the possible exception to NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOUR WATTS) with your sweaty partner, that is the life I want.
I know this much is true.