Dreaming big, failing badly

I was never a big dreamer, preferring instead to plan the next thing and work towards a long term objective. Eat the elephant one bite at a time. But this year was different, I had a big dream, it went like this.

I head to Germany for Challenge Roth, the original Ironman Europe; the following week head to IM Switzerland to watch Ronnie Schilderknicht race for a record 6x Ironman win; then I'd head over to Northern France to my Sisters house, catch a couple of days of the Tour de France, meet up with Laura and Shane on their cycling holiday; then I'd head over to Northern Spain and race for Team GB in the ITU World Long Course championships; then back to the UK, watch both the Mens and Womens Olympic Triathlons, and in between, race the Trowbridge Sprint Triathlon where my Mum lives, perfect. To top it all off, the European Triathlon Union (ETU) announced that Challenge Roth would be the European long distance championships, how good is that, 2x Team GB competitor in a single summer.

The wheels started coming off the bus at Corpus Christie. With the cancellation of the swim and a shortened bike course, it meant that my time wouldn't qualify me for Team GB; Then I had a DNF at the Shiner GASP century, the first time in 5x years. After that I talked to coach about the psychology of my training program, and after much discussion we agreed to part company as I pretty didn't feel I had the confidence to complete Roth, let alone in a new PR time.

And so it was I went to the Armadillo Classic century ride, 105 miles up at Liberty Hill, I didn't have to ride to a certain HR, a certain power output, just for fun and for the first 40 or so miles it was. From mile 38, I pulled a group of some 7 or 8 riders through about 4-miles, at a decent HR and cadence, we made a turn, there was a sign that said rest stop 1-mile, I looked back and we'd dropped one of the riders I was with, so I dropped off the front and went back for her.

We road up the hill, me doing the pull, checking back to see if she was behind, I looked back once and when I turned around, my front wheel dropped off a 2-inch drop of pavement onto a driveway, I tried to bunny hop back on but ended up going over the handlebars and coming down hard on my right shoulder. I picked myself up, looked at the bike, both tires were punctured, so we set about replacing the tubes, wen I went to pull on the lever, I had no power. I put my left hand on my right shoulder and pushed my right arm in the air, I felt my collarbone loose. Game over.

Later I drove myself to E/R, X-ray confirmed it was snapped in half but a non-urgent; I saw a couple of specialists this week, no surgery but a 8-10 week recovery. This means no Roth, no Roth means no Switzerland, no France, No Spain and so it was yesterday I booked my flights to the UK, at least I'm getting to see the Olympic triathlons,and a couple of other events my sister has already got tickets for. Finally, I've entered the Wiltshire Times Trowbridge (sprint) Triathlon and hope my shoulder will be well enough for me to do the 400m pool swim.

No more big dreams.
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Sorry to hear about that Mark...

I don't know what feels better -

Setting big goals, working hard and doing the right things to get there, and somehow getting derailed by chance


Setting big goals, being a bum, and being sad when they don't work out.

It's like, what would you do differently knowing what you know now? If nothing, then how does that feel? If you would act dramatically different, then at least you're learning, right?
Re: Crappy
Well put that way, of course the former. However, I rarely make such big plans, and thus never have the same sense of failure, or perhaps more accurately, disappointment.

I'm indeed learning, I either need a coach that can motivate me and train me at the same time, or I've been in triathlon too long to be put in a straight jacket of a formal program that isn't challenging me enough.
So sorry for you
I'm sorry Mark. I guess that's what you were dealing with when we passed you by. I thought it was just a flat tire. Didn't realize you were hurt and all. One wrong move while doing a good deed and so much is affected. I hear your frustration. At least no surgery is needed. Heal well and quickly!
Re: So sorry for you
Thanks Pam... I'm just writing it off as a bad start to the year. I can still remember you standing at the turn around point of the IBM 10K after your surgery :) Worked out well for you! I'll probably see you around somewhere soon, I'll be volunteering at a few things...
Set new goals
Hey! Mark,
I was two weeks ahead of you last year when I broke my collar bone. I pushed for the surgery because it meant I could get back to training more quickly. I raced IM Austria 8 weeks to the day of having the plate and screws .

Your Big Dream sounds incredible, and there is always next year when you are healthy. Looks like you are making steps in the right direction with your plans for the sprint tri. What will make you feel successful this year with your setbacks? Come race Kerrville with us. There will be tons of Austin athletes racing there, maybe that half can be used for Team GB for 2013?

If I can be any help in your healing process, give me a shout. I definitely know a lot of good professionals and have gone through the rehab.

Start a new dream! Hope to see you soon. Jen
Re: Set new goals
Thanks Jen, I'm going to get done with recovery and see how my shoulder is, Kerrville is definitely a maybe, I may go do Redman as well, but I'm going to go back to focusing on the short term for now and get the pool sprint done back in the UK.

I just got a reply back from the Roth people, they've offered me a massive discount and early entry for next year... so maybe Roth will be back on too!
Re: Terrible news
Yeah, actually its not so painful, just got to take care for a few weeks! Hope things are well with you!