I think I may be ready for this
Hard to imagine, but I think I'm ready to do an Ironman.
Over the weekend I rode just over 100 miles (two laps of the Alpe d'Hess / Happy Canyon / Pradera / Bayou Gulch loop, with a total of 4900+ feet of altitude gain) with a little 3 mile brick and the next day went for 15.5 miles, nice and easy. That's 118 miles out of the 140.6 they have scheduled for me in Madison, and most of that difference will come on the bike.
I think I can do it.
The nights are getting cooler now and the neighborhood kids are starting school. I take my elder one to college this weekend (no idea how I will survive emotionally) and my younger one starts her journey of sixth grade on Monday. This is my last building week; after this, I'll taper.
Charo has slowly built up my times and distances all season so that I never felt terribly overwhelmed or discouraged. I think sometimes that I'd like to be faster, or that I wish I had ridden several centuries this summer and not just the one (so far: I imagine I have another this weekend) - but I was not really training at all when we got started, and I haven't gotten injured to the point of not being able to race or train. (Shoulder feels 89% better, by the way - did a short test swim last night and it feels fine.) Next year perhaps I can ride with the ZTeam; I have needed to go too long lately to be able to ride as hard as I have to when I ride with them. But I can handle the distance - I know what my body needs by way of fuel and water and Gatorade or whatever. . .
From a training perspective, I'm ready.
Who knows about this hernia. I saw a surgeon yesterday and he said that it's worse than he was expecting, based on the fact that it's not hurting me - should I worry about that? - and he told me that I could proceed with my plan (continue training and go race; stop if my body tells me that I have to stop). When I asked him "how will I know if I have to stop?" he turned to me and said "oh - you'll know."
I was telling a friend the other day that I do think of myself as a master of living with uncertainty, but this is a bit much even for me.
Still: I have this quiet belief that I'm actually ready to do this race.