Ebbs and Flows, you know how it goes

Posted on by Whit Hughston

The ebbs and flows of a triathlon season…ah, yes.  This is what happens when the season for your sport lasts the better part of 7 months (and really could last all 12 months if you let it consume you).  There are ups and downs.  They come in training, they come in racing, they come in your mental state and they come in the form of injury.  Everyone’s been there.  And for me, this season was filled with ups and downs.  And filled chronologically, with the ups coming first and the downs finishing off my season way too early.

The ups

Starting with a nice build of training in February and March that had me feeling pretty good for an early sprint tri @ the FS Series race of Beaverdam.  It was there that I notched my first win.  Albeit not overly impressive, I felt really good about my swim conditioning and even better about my bike fitness and improvement.  All of this was important to keep my mind up for my “A” race this year, The American Triple-T in Ohio.

The American Triple-T (ATT) in early June was brutal and awesome, all wrapped in one.  The brutal part is the 3 consecutive days of racing.  It taxes you physically, with 4 races over those 3 days culminating in a 70.3 with LOTS of climbing.  It also taxes you mentally, having to wake up each day and get yourself ready to compete, already sore and knowing what’s to come that day ahead.  This was the second straight year of me completing the ATT.  I exceeded the previous year in overall placement.  Each race was improved over the year before.  This made for a massive UP heading into the summer season.  I planned to do many local sprints over July, August and September and I couldn’t wait to continue the season.

The downs

Then, my plans for the summer/fall season changed.  Insertional Achilles tendonitis (or tendinosis) struck on July 5th.  This injury has been my enemy, off and on, for the better part of 5 years.  Each time it flares up bad enough to take a break from running, it’s bad enough that I have to stop running for several months.  This one is no different.  I could still swim, I could still bike, but I couldn’t run.  So, my tri season was done.  Just like that.  It was a physical and mental down that I’m still yet to recover from.  I know the drill, though…give it a few months and I’ll be back.  And I’ll be as ready as ever to improve, learn and have fun.

Until next year!!!!

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