Friday, August 25, 2006

Crazy Times

This is nuts. This...in between thing is kicking my ass. Taper is weird and I feel restless as hell.

My workouts are lighter. Same intensity, but less long. Or only one thing each day, like swimming, instead of the usual swimming and then running or whatever. So I feel like a sloth. I feel like a fat tub of goo. I haven't gained any weight. It just feels like I'm gaining weight. It feels like because I'm not doing 2 miles in the pool yesterday and a 12 mile run today or something insane like that that I'm becoming an instant couch potato. I'm not...in fact I've lost two pounds (down to 183! Whoohoo!) And this is absolutely symptomatic of any taper, anybody will tell you that. But man it feels weird. Part of me wonders if the lightened physical load means I'm less doped up on endorphins and adrenaline than I normally am, and that part of my neurosis right now is just run-of-the-mill withdrawal from my body's own chemicals which I've been saturated with for so long now. Tomorrow I have a 3 hour bike followed by a run, and Sunday a 2 hour bike and a run. That feels a little more like it. Maybe that'll help.

My mind is making up for the limited amount of physical activity by working overboard on lists of things. I am a restless, obsessed (even more than usual), relatively disengaged freakshow. I'm switching mental gears at work seriously 10 times a minute. My usual ADD is cranked up to Featured On 60 Minutes proportions. I'm all hopped up on insanity and excitement. And we're still more than 2 weeks away!

I'm sleeping like. crap. and that part is irritating because the sleep is critical. I'm falling asleep okay, but awake inevitably 4 hours or so later with a brain that wants to discuss Ironman. It's not worry or fear or any of the usual suspects - I just wake up thinking about Ironman. What it'll be like, how it'll feel to finally be racing, what it'll look like. Nothing that should require my attention at 3am, but there you go. And then the gears get spinning and I'm wide awake for the next 2 hours before finally falling back to sleep and having to wake up to get to work tired. I am sometimes able to make up for the deficit with a nap, but that's not ideal either. I don't know what all to do about that part. It's driving me nutso.

I have a list 2 pages long on my desk. It's my Ironman To-Do list. Some of it is totally inane stuff that shouldn't require being on a list, like "Listen to Strauss Podcast." But I'm hoping if I just put everything on a list then it won't fly into my head at some inopportune moment, like say when I'm trying to get some friggin' sleep. My iCal is worse. Swear to God today at 2:30, I have scheduled "Visualization". Who schedules visualization?

I can't imagine living with me right now.

But. In all of that, here's what I'm not...and I keep expecting it to come, but it hasn't and with all the fertile soil I think it would have: I'm not afraid. I don't think of this race with fear. I'm not doubtful. I'm not sitting around worrying about a bunch of what-ifs. I'm not paranoid about things I can't control. I'm not even paranoid about the things I can control, because I seemingly have some kind of peace of mind about those things that don't require their constant maintenance. So. That's a plus, I guess.

Sigh.

Strange days, these. And more to come I'm sure.

7 comments:

Michael Anderson said...

Each phase of your training seems to have a unique and new thing to struggle with. Who knew restlessness during taper would need to be wrestled with?

One more thing to work through and survive. Have you found any good advice from others on taking this in stride? I'm sure it's not unique to you to have to go through this. Especially the sleep thing.

Hope you tackle this as zealously and effectively as you have the rest of your training. I can't imagine you not, at this point. Or maybe ever again.

RunIrisRun said...

Tapering sucks. That's all there is to it. You'll be better for it in the end though. Poor Amy - has she moved to a hotel yet? I think Steve almost did during my taper...

triteacher said...

OMG, you're not alone and thank you for writing this!!! I feel the same - right down to the compulsive list-making - just so it doesn't wake me up at 3AM. I literally spent 2 hours yesterday refining my IM list, then did my 3 hour workout and had a whole bunch of things to change. I am also thankful for a spouse though, who grounds me. Today we went shopping and for sushi and I only talked IM for about 15 minutes. We will make it through this! Oh, September 10th...

Pharmie said...

At least one of us isn't worried about the race! I'm still nervous as hell every time I think about it.

qcmier said...

Hang in there. Just think positive thoughts. Glad to hear the no fear talk. You're going to do just great.

abby said...

I'm thinking of you in your taper. Hard to believe it is so close.

Anonymous said...

You can do it!
As Frankie Says "relax".