Run Day (Saturday)
Ride Day (Sunday)
I was a lifeguard for the City of Palmdale for about 150 summers from high school all the way through college. One of the guys I worked with was Brother Savage, a big, strong, intense, and excellent lifeguard who punctuated many sentences and actions with a barked, "No doubt!" I love this phrase and, along with the Courson Way, which I follow to this day, have held on to it.
No doubt in the context of life, lifeguarding, and exercise means full committment to whatever is being done at the time. If you're going to take a class, do it without a doubt about why you're there. Going for a run? Never question your ability. Making a save? There is no doubt that save is going down smooth.
I've been dragging this week in terms of my workouts. Monday's ride was great, but other than that I haven't felt as fired up as I'd like. And I hit the bottom of Pineapple Hill this morning needing a push. And Savage (real name, fit perfectly, no joke) popped in to my head.
I use my time as a COP guard all the time. When I'm feeling stressed and need to relax I can close my eyes and go back to lying on the desk, feeling Courson's chipped seal, smelling the chlorine and sun screen, warming in the desert sun. When I need to motivate I think about what Bolt or BCY or Timmy would say if they saw me dragging ass like this. I think about the flag, which meant so much to me it was also my first tattoo.
So I growled, "No doubt," and hit that climb. It wasn't any faster than any other time, the wind kicked me around pretty good (when the crosswind make my spokes hum I know it's blowing good), but I got up the damn thing and got it done. And that only put me at 26 miles, ten short of my goal. On to base! I didn't do Kolekole, but I did get some decent small incline work done. When I finished my 40 I felt like I could have gotten another ten knocked out. But it was wife time. More important.
Yesterday's run followed the same. I felt slowish and tightish. So I had to reach down, find that place where there is no doubt, where there is only the decision to run and get it done, and dig that out. Again, not the fastest outing, but the run got run. My mind goes to the race, I think about how I know there will be times when my stomach cramps a little, times when I'm going to think, just for a moment, I really want to walk for just a minute. And I'm going to come back to these runs and these rides, when the sun is hot, when I might not have as much food energy to burn as I should in my body, when I've been teaching all week and would really rather just sit on the couch and play video games, and all the way back to those workouts with my guards, and I'll get it done.