The mare in the night

by hhf3

This past weekend I spent quite some time looking over the Cleveland Triathlon’s website, including the course map and photos from last year. Probably – nay, definitely – a bad idea. I like to race in blissful ignorance. Not to say I’m not prepared – I always have a race plan – but not knowing what’s ahead allows me to race at my best. I didn’t like knowing what the sets were going to be in swim practice; I don’t like mapping a course out for myself for my long rides or runs. I can always deal with what comes as it comes.

I am a bit nervous already for the race. Maybe because I’ve never done transitions before, never swum in Lake Erie before, and never rode with so many cyclists on the same road before. Knowing the course, seeing the pictures didn’t help. I’ve started having pseudo-nightmares about the race. A remarkably realistic dream on Sunday night involved me missing my heat by 10 minutes. Another involved my bike being stolen out of the transition area (weirdly, it was indoors and it was storming during the race). I have never dreamt about a race before. Even in the 13 years of competitive swimming, even knowing I had a tough race ahead of me (like swimming the 1650 for the first time), it never happened. I guess I always felt prepared enough. Having a coach and a race plan and a team help. Here I’m on my own.