Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Soma Second Thoughts.


Now that I'm deeply into my post-race funk, I'm having second thoughts about Soma.

I've been looking at the cutoff time (3:15) and the high number of DNF's, and it occurs to me that probably, many of these people actually finished, but didn't meet the cutoff time or were forced to leave the course.

I'm used to being last, or nearly last. I don't mind losing. I'm used to having aid stations torn down as I go past, or even before I go past. I'm used to volunteers going home, and being accompanied by someone as the last runner in.

I know I'm getting a little faster over time. As well, for me, for now, there is the finishing, the acknowledgement and the recorded splits. They all say I finished. It may have taken me 8:56:00 to finish a half iron, but by golly, I showed up, did it, and never quit, no matter how hard it was.

However, I'm not sure that I'm internally motivated enough to work my ass off for over 8 hours, to swim, pedal and pound, then try to cross where the finish line was a few minutes ago, only to be told, "you weren't fast enough" and be labeled DNF. I'm not sure I would appreciate being lumped in with someone who walked up, stuck their toe in the lake, and then didn't try at all.

I think I could make the cutoff time. I think I could, but I'm not positive. I'm just not sure that I want to try that hard only to be told, "Your best just wasn't good enough. You didn't try hard enough. DNF"

As a teacher, I live in a world of external motivators, aka grades. It's a repulsive thought, the idea of saying to my students, "yes, you worked awfully hard on this project, but you didn't meet my standards, so I'm giving you a zero. Not credit at all. Now go away."

So I have some thinking to do, about whether or not I want to be told that my best just isn't good enough, and about whether I'm strong enough to handle it if/when it comes.

...

7 comments:

  1. I didn't realize there was a 3:15 cut off time. That seems a little unrealistic, especially when so few women in my age group and older barely break three hours. So this is just telling the older/slower people to not even bother with this race? Geeze! I am glad a friend of mine didn't get in then, as it would have been her second tri ever and barely broke two hours for a sprint. Sure isn't encouraging. You will do the right thing for you! Best of luck!

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  2. Keryn, Keryn! Read it again!!! You guys start at 7:33 and you have to be off the run course at 3:15 pm!!! NOT three hours and fifteen min into the race!!!! So GO FOR IT! You have MORE THAN ENOUGH TIME FOR SURE! (That's OVER SEVEN HOURS...and I know you are much faster than that!) Hope you didn't already cancel your plans!!!! YEA!!!!

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  3. you're going to be fine at SOMA. no worries. you've done a half before, and this course is supposedly pretty flat... at least, that's what benny tell me. he wouldn't lie... would he?

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  4. My back of the envelope calculations say that you have to improve your Redman time by 38 min. You know this...but don't forget you had two major factors working against you in the Redman: 1. 25mph wind with 40mph gusts, and 2. Dehydration. I quickly reviewed the last 5 years of weather for Tempe and the winds has been between 5 to 15mph. If you take in account the high probability of lower wind speed, and lessons learned about hydration - all your split times should improve! How bad do you want it?

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  5. Misty...I am so sorry I got your name mixed up with another blogger (who is above you on my link site...I will blame this on old age and fatigue!) But I still think that you are going to do dynamite! Go get 'em Misty!

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  6. From someone also in the back of the pack-I feel like I always have to try. I've had this same dicussion with myself. Then my teenagers looked at me and reminded me of everything I've tried to tell them. As a teacher -what advice would you offer your students?

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  7. OK- I couldn't be much more of a dolt now, could I? I thought you were doing the Quarterman...not the half, but I should read things more carefully. I tend to skim and miss half of things...How in hell I missed the big blue letters on the right side of your blog is just inexcusable! But I still think you can do this...hope you go for it!

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