With Ironman Coeur D'Alene quickly approaching (16 days. WTF.), I am feeling more and more stress. Not nerves. STRESS. Because I have expectations of how I will do. I worry and stress that I will not be able to repeat or better my first Ironman performance.
And even though they are different races, in different years, and different locations, with different training, and I'm different.. it doesn't matter. I still worry and compare myself. Then and now.
The fact is: worrying about performance detracts from the actual experience of the race. I am not going to win. I am not going to even win my age group. Honestly, I have about a 1% chance of even PLACING in my age group. So does my performance at this race really matter (as compared to my performance at Lake Placid last year)? NO.
If I go to this race and do my absolute best - ON THAT DAY - that is what matters.
What matters is taking that race day and enjoying it, remembering it, realizing how lucky you are to be able to 1) afford to do the race, 2) travel to a beautiful part of the country, 3) actually put your body through 12+ hours of cardiovascular work without collapsing from a heart attack, 4) look hot in a race kit (HAHA).
All of this should NOT lead to having a mental breakdown at mile 18 when you realize you're not going to hit your race goal (guilty). Not lead to getting upset if your time isn't faster than XX:XX (guilty).
You (ok, I, this is obviously a pump-you-up message to myself) need to have confidence in your race and your athletic abilities and let the race just.. happen.