My taper has nearly ended. Tomorrow I will jog for ten minutes to keep my legs loose. Then I will go in to town, drop off my bike, kiss it, get body marked, start to walk back to the truck, go check on Kratos one more time, then go home and relax.
At this point there is nothing I can physically do to be faster and stronger aside from conserving energy. It's kind of a hard week. I never worked out very hard and I found myself thinking, "Just a little harder. One more run can't hurt. I ate a little too much last night, I should go work some off." And I couldn't. Conserve, rest, wait, repeat.
What I can do, and what I've been trying to do, is build trust in my training. I spent 18 weeks working as hard as I've ever worked, including when I was swimming in high school and college. This has been a focused stretch of go go go recover go go go recover and I need to get it in my head that it all paid off.
Two weeks ago I was shredded, as thin as I've been in I don't know how long. Post weekend workout, when I was dehydrated and hungry, I was floating off the scale at 164. That's an artificial weight, I realize that, but it's still freaking low. By the time I was fed and hydrated again I was up three or four pounds. And right now I'm hanging out around 169. I think if I had controlled my snacking better I'd be lighter. And lighter is faster...to a point. But there is no danger of me developing an eating problem. My wife cooks too well.
I've had a few breakthrough workouts this training cycle. Some of my runs have felt incredible, and I've finished 40 miles rides feeling fresh and strong. My swims never really felt like they peaked, but I'm coming from a different place with that skill and I'm trying not to let that bother me. Out of the three, I know for sure that my stroke will come when I hit the water and get some clear space in front of me.
So now it's down to believing in what I've been doing on land. Knowing that all that effort has cumulated inside me and prepared me for Sunday. This should be a fun race. You can't beat swimming in our version of the Pacific and the odds of perfect weather are high. There will be over 2000 athletes there, from elite crazy people throwing down 1:59s to guys and gals straining for a 3:30. And I'll be in the middle of all of it, trying to have fun, trying to keep my game face on, trying to stay focused for 25 miles of riding and six miles of running. Trying to trust my training and really make it hurt because I know that even through it hurts, I've earned that hurt and I have its measure.