Crazy? or Fun?

January 13, 2013

I’ve got used to people telling me I’m crazy when I tell them about  my Ironman plans and I even understand why people think it’s crazy. However the first time I actually have personally felt there was an element of craziness in it was on Friday: to be more specific on Friday at 5:10am.

I’ve been going to Friday early morning swimming classes on and off for a while. After the Christmas break the location for these classes had switched from a pool which is about 11 km from my home to one which is, according to Google Maps, 21 km from my home. On top of that it is now starts 15 minutes earlier so we have to be in the water at 7am.

That might not seem so bad, particularly to those of you who normally transport yourselves around by car. However, I don’t have a car so for me the choice is between public transportation or bike. Until now I’ve been cycling (except when we had a lot of snow and ice), but it is quite a difference between 11 km and 21 km (each way I might add). However when I looked at the possibilities it would take even longer by public transportation, so I decided:  bike it was. And anyway, I need to get more cycling time into my training schedule. That seemed like a very sensible decision while I was sitting at my desk in my nice warm office looking at the route planner.

A complicating factor to this is that I have a truly terrible sense of direction and I had no idea where this swimming pool was. On the map it seemed to be in the midst of a rabbit warren of small paths and local streets. This was a problem because 1. It generally isn’t easy to read a map while you are cycling, particularly not in the dark which it is at 6:30 in the morning here at this time of year; 2. Even if I did have a map in front of me, I can’t see a thing without my reading glasses and 3. If you do get lost there aren’t many people around to ask for directions at that time of the morning.

So it is not an exaggerating to say that, when I headed off to bed on Thursday evening, I was feeling somewhat stressed about the whole project.

So on Friday at 5:10 am when the alarm went off my reaction was “THIS IS TOTALLY CRAZY!” And when I looked out of the window and saw that it had snowed during the night my reaction was “THIS IS TOTALLY CRAZY!”. And when I was pedalling through the forest in the freezing pitch blackness without another soul, bike or car in sight my reaction was “THIS IS TOTALLY CRAZY!”. When I got to the pool at was taking a shower and the water was freezing my reaction was “THIS IS TOTALLY CRAZY!”.

But then we got in the pool and started the session I started thinking “this is fun!”, and by the time we finished it was starting to get light and although I had a headwind on the way home, it was still fun. And when I got home I changed into my running shoes and went for my run, and although my fingers were freezing and my legs were heavy from the swimming and the cycling, it was fun. And when I got back from my run I sat down and had a huge breakfast with delicious bread rolls and an enormous croissant and hot coffee: THAT WAS REALLY FUN!

And not only was it fun, I felt very smug and pleased with myself. And now I know: next Friday when the alarm goes off (at 5:20 rather than 5:10 because I found out it was only 17km each way and not 21 – Google Map fail) I expect that I will have a moment where I think that this project is crazy. But I also know that that it’s a passing feeling and the feeling that THIS IS FUN is the enduring one……

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5 Responses to “Crazy? or Fun?”

  1. pwhent Says:

    This is a great post. Well done for your dedication. I get up at 5.15am several times a week to catch an early train so I can train before work so I feel your pain. However I don’t swim, bike and run like you do in one day. Well done and good luck!!

  2. Jo Says:

    amazing dedication


  3. You’ve got my respect! Good job~

  4. crazyeggman Says:

    Hate the cold….really hate the cold…nice job.

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