This whole triathlon thing has presented me with a lot of challenges, some more welcomed than others. As a former swimmer I only had to get over fears of swimming in dark, murky waters. Even running isn't too bad. I may not be the fastest runner but I feel comfortable during most runs. That leaves cycling. I am a complete newbie and even though I have been making progress I still have a lot to learn. I also have a lot of room for improvement.
After a tough ride on Sunday with my boyfriend I started questioning why I even cared about the sport of triathlon since I am so bad on a bike. I was angry and thought there was no point in trying since I was hopeless. Then my boyfriend said something to me that is common sense but something that I needed to hear from someone else. He reminded me that I hadn't even been riding for a year so I couldn't expect myself to keep the same pace as someone who has been riding for 5+ years.
When I was swimming I felt so at home and at peace with myself. Sure I had tough, challenging workouts but I still knew relatively how to tackle them successfully. I hadn't experienced that struggle of the unknown and doing something new in over ten years. I pushed myself constantly in the pool and I push myself on runs now, but not in the way that I have to push myself on the bike. It is pretty hard to explain but it is a real struggle for me.
After that ride on Sunday I was terrified about whether I could complete the bike portion of my upcoming triathlon. It has a lot more hills than I am used to. I knew, though, that the only way to get better at hills was to practice climbing. This morning as I was riding part of the course I experienced many emotions. At times I was all I love cycling, I could do this all day! and then when it was time to start climbing the negative thoughts would creep back in.
Once I was done the ride, though, I felt stronger than on Sunday. I started to think that with some serious hill work I can do this ride. I really have nothing left to lose by trying and I know that if I don't try I will regret it big time.