I have learned a TON the past few months—both about triathlon and life in general.

1) Trust the plan! I’m sort of OCD and it is pretty hard for me sometimes to put my trust in others but that is what you have to do. Find someone you trust and then go with it. There were definitely times when I just didn’t want to follow my plan (like in the terribly horrible week called taper when I wanted to do more but my coach wouldn’t let me. Or when I had zero clue why I had to do backstroke in some workouts. I literally thought ‘why on earth would I practice backstroke? I will never use that in my entire life.’ Oh, wait. Wrong…once again. When you start panicking during the swim and can’t put your face in the water, backstroke becomes your best friend. And all those early mornings that I did not want to swim or run but I did anyway. And it worked. Consistency is key and when you work hard you get results.

2) It is going to be hard and it will suck sometimes, but it WILL get better. Before the race my coach told me “it’s going to be bad at some point but just keep going because it will get better.” Well, yep, she was right. It definitely was bad at some points but I just kept reminding myself that it will get better, just keep going. On the bike course there were a few big climbs and I literally kept repeating to myself…sometimes outloud “you’re ok, you’re ok, you’re ok” and then that got too hard even so I shortened it to “ok, ok, ok, ok”. Mantras can really help sometimes.

Here is a video my dad took during mile 3 of the run. I was hurting but talking to him just for a second helped. He kept shouting “you can do it! 3 miles to go! You can do it!” to which I respond “This is really hard!” Haha. At least I’m running!

3) Taper sucks. I was so looking forward to tapering–I thought it would be so nice to have a chance to relax and sleep and live like a normal person. No, not so much. I was irritable all the time, an emotional mess, I felt slow and sluggish, and just hated it.

4) Recovery week sucks too. After my race I felt invincible. I was on the top of the world and felt like I could do anything. It’s a damn good thing someone wasn’t at the finish line asking for signups for an Ironman in a month because I very well might have signed up! I just wanted to get right back into training, putting all my lessons learned into practice and just break a good sweat. Well, guess what, not allowed. Gotta rest and recover.

5) Haters are going to hate. As awesome and supportive as most people are, it’s inevitable that you’re going to run into some haters. There will always be people who just don’t want you to succeed. You just have to remember that they are just jealous and insecure. They know that they can’t or won’t ever work as hard to accomplish something and it makes them resent you. They’re jealous of the attention you get from the people that DO care and that are impressed with you. You just have to deal with it and ignore the haters, they are not worth a single second of your time.

6) Doing things that make you happy, makes you happy.

I had lunch with a friend the other day that I hadn’t talked to in a long time and he commented on how this is the happiest I’ve seemed in a long time. And that’s because it’s true! I’ve finally found a hobby that I love and that makes me happy. And I’ve made some great new friends in the process! And I just LOVE how enthusiastic everyone is about this sport! I really haven’t found any triathletes who are ambivalent about it…everyone is so so so passionate and it is contagious! I just love to soak up the positive energy 🙂

And finally a BIG thank you to Chloe who has an awesome blog. I won her giveaway last week and got myself some Hoo Ha Ride Glide. I tried it out this morning on my bike ride and it is fantastic…I highly recommend ordering some for yourself. Not only that but Chloe was sweet enough to send me a cute tshirt and a nice card. Bloggers are the best! Thanks again!