Trust is defined by Merriam-Webster as follows:
- a:assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something
- b: one in which confidence is placed
I bring this up in regards to training and specifically speed. At some point we all started at X:XX/mile pace and overtime steadily improved and are now running at Y:YY/mile pace. You can substitute bike speed or swim speed as well. There was a starting point and through hours and hours and miles and miles we got faster, but the question is at what point did you trust that was your speed?
When I started this triathlon journey I would swim 100 yards in 2 minutes to 2 minutes and 10 seconds give or take. I wasn’t the slowest but I certainly wasn’t the fastest. I have worked at my craft to the point that I can swim my fastest of 100 yard set in 1 minute and 35 seconds and have that be fairly consistent but I still don’t trust the pace. Why?
I’m not sure of that answer, but here is some background. Earlier this year I did a 1,ooo yard time trial and I finished about 1:50/100 yards and felt like I wasn’t winded. It was as if I didn’t try. I will say that Coach always says to do these time trial sets as if it were a race. In a race I go out and settle into a groove and that was what I did but I felt like I cheated myself and her. I emailed her and gave her the splits but told her I had more in the tank. The following month we did another and my pace decreased to 1:45/100 yards and yet I still felt strong at the end.
Instead of doing another time trial test I just assigned a random number of 1:42/100 yards for all sets that she asked I swim at race pace for. A moderate pace was not going to be between 1:45 and 1:50 and a slow easy pace was going to be 1:50 – 2:00. Every time I got in the water though I questioned if I could hold that pace for 300 yards or 400 yards. Never mind that I had actually swam that pace for longer distances. I didn’t trust myself to swim at those times. It has been an odd feeling.
I can recall running my first half-marathon and marathon and just about dying at the end. I know that I had to get better and I did. I trusted myself to run faster and I did. To the point that my first marathon was a 4:29 and most recently ran a 3:31 in December. I trust that my speed for a long distance run like a marathon is 8:00/mile. I know that a half-marathon can be run in sub-1:40 without pain and a 15k can be run in sub-7:25/mile pace. I trust these numbers because they have proven to be true, but I also know that I’m training smarter and that those times will drop.
On the bike I was an 18 mph rider but now I am a 20 mph rider. I trust that speed. I also question that speed to the point that I think I can hit 21 mph on the bike in one week in Puerto Rico. I trust that I can ride that fast for 56 miles because I just rode 19.5 mph for 92 miles. It has proven to be true and thus why I may question my speed in the water. In two Half-Ironman races I have swam 40:37 and 40:08. Almost identical times and so I don’t trust that my current speed will translate to 1.2 miles. I am questioning whether or not I can get down to somewhere between 36 and 38 minutes for the distance. Time will tell and I will put my mind to the test because I am fairly positive that my body can.
That is the key to this whole scenario. Silencing the mind. Telling the mind to shut-up when it questions whether or not I can go that fast. I have a goal of 5:10 in Puerto Rico and that means that I MUST swim between 35 and 38 minutes otherwise I will have to ride faster and run faster than I have planned and trained for. Trust the training that I have done and put the work to good use.
WHEN DID YOU KNOW THIS WAS YOUR NEW SPEED?