I can officially say I am 12 weeks into my Ironman journey! My journey to Ironman is a consistent build from sprint to olympic to half-Iron to full-Iron. To start myself out, I have been following the Lifetime sprint triathlon training plan. It’s a 12-week program meant for novice triathletes. Having the base fitness I do, I felt like this was the right plan for me.
Now I will be honest with you, I completed this program in the most basic way possible. I didn’t pay too much attention to heart rate zones, or other training measures outside of the basic amount of time prescribed for each activity. My goal was simply just to get it done! I needed to learn how to follow the plan and let my body ease into each of the disciplines comfortably and at its own pace.
I grew so much during these 12 weeks. My running became stronger and I learned to trust my bike, how to clip in (and maybe most important…how to clip out) and I found that this is a good journey for me. I loved every bit of this program, even the parts I didn’t want to do! There were definitely days, more than I should admit, that I did not want to go out and run or bike, but I made the effort to always push forward. Even if I wasn’t going to run the whole time, I at least went out and completed the time as a walk. I learned a valuable lesson in showing up. And in doing so I accomplished some awesome things! I completed my first (second and third) 10K, road my longest bike distance of 25 miles and completed 3 Ironman VR challenges.
Being a beginner isn’t something I am generally good at as someone who chases perfection and really, really, really likes to compete. The 12 weeks reinforced the value of challenging and allowing myself to be new at something and enjoy the full ride and all of its up’s and down’s.
I have so enjoyed this first step of training and I can’t wait until I can compete my first triathlon. It has been amazing to become part of a truly inclusive and supportive community of other athletes at all stages.
So what’s next? I am embarking on another 12-week sprint triathlon training plan, this time, it is one created by USA Triathlon. This go around, I will be focused on all the fun data, HR zones, improvements and pushing as prescribed to truly track progress. Also this time…I am betting on getting to swim (wasn’t able to swim 99% of the program due to COVID closures).
If you’re considering starting a new challenge, whether it be triathlons or anything else, as a reformed perfectionist, I highly recommend it.
Enjoy some photos taken during the last 12 weeks!