Sunday is generally my work day and work is going well so I'm busy. I had a conversation with Steve, one of my long time athletes of 5 years, and he is battling a few niggles caused by imbalances in his strength. He reads my blob and came to the realization that he too is having similar feelings of dissatisfaction in his race goals and training (my neurosis is paying off because I knew exactly how he felt and what I could do to help him). A small part of what he is feeling is due to an inability to 'escape' triathlon. When he's done training he wants to stop thinking about it and he's in a situation where this has become difficult. I've long thought that this could be contributing to why I lost interest in the marathon (and Ironman for that matter). Think about what you do all day at work. Now think about getting up early to think about work and to work. Then after you get off work you come home and think about work and do more work. Running is simultaneously my obsession, hobby, and job. I have a great passion for training, so much so that I have lost interest in racing... all I want to do is train and learn. My job is to plan athlete's training schedules. Now, don't get me wrong, I love coaching and I don't want it to stop or even slow down because I find myself having more passion about my athlete's races than my own! Maybe I live vicariously through them? The point I'm making is that maybe it makes sense that I feel the way I do simply because I can't 'escape' running or triathlon? Often while I am running I am thinking more about my athletes than I am myself.
One solution I have come up with is to choose a race that I am not coaching anyone for and is very far removed from any of my athlete's races. If it's different enough, maybe I can preserve a small slice of interest for myself? So I'm taking any and all runners for coaching... unless you want to run Leadville. I doubt I could coach anyone to a 100 mile run race anyway! Which is partly why I have chosen that race for next year- to be my own experiment of one and learn how to do it, not with another athlete, but with myself. There's no better way to learn than through experience. So after my 2 week recovery from a vasectomy on the 16th, I'll start the experiment. My biggest training week for Ironman was 49 hours which followed 2 weeks of 35 and 40 hours total training- I followed that week up with a 4th place at the Boulder Peak Olympic distance triathlon in which I had the fastest bike split by over 2:00 (1:00:21 for 25 miles) and ran ~34:00 for 10k. I told my best friend- Mike, who will also be my pacer- that I was bagging Chicago and entering Leadville and all he said was "Good. That's what you'll be good at". He thinks my ability to not need to eat (ever) will be my biggest strength. Bonking is a rarity for me and when I do bonk I usually enjoy it and I can run while bonking. I also don't sweat so I don't lose water which I think is partly from building up to being able to sit in a dry sauna at 185 degrees for an hour, or that's why I can do that. I also don't get injured and I seem to only feel better the more mileage I am running. Now that I live in the mountains... everything sort of points me in the direction of Leadville.
I also wanted a goal that scares the sh!t out of me. Running 100 miles seems nearly impossible to me... which makes it interesting.
Disclaimer: I reserve the right to enter the race, train my ass of for it, then not do it.