A botched time trial. A criterium where I puled the pin because of wet corners. A road race where I got a flat at the most pivotal point in the race. This was my weekend this year at the Corsicana Stage Race. I had a lofty goal coming into this weekend. With where my fitness was, I felt that a podium spot on GC was within m abilities. My final result for the weekend was a DNF (did not finish). My name was not even on the results sheet.
Why would I share this experience with you? Because as I sit in my bed typing out this blog post I am wrapping up one of the most consistent/best weeks of training I have ever done. My great week of training started less than 24 hours after my Corsicana Stage Race fiasco. There's a lesson here.
Although my weekend was nowhere near what I had been envisioning for myself, I was able to let it go quickly and continue to move towards my next goal. There are many athletes that did not have the weekend they had hoped for either, I wonder how the responded? My fitness coming into the weekend was good. I knew that from my training and Lago Vista the previous weekend. Nothing had changed there and so I knew that my bad weekend was not a result of poor fitness.
Upon further review, I realized I had raced my time trial very poorly in terms of pacing. I had gone out way too fast and died towards the end of the effort. In the criterium there were wet corners and I was not willing to crash in order to compete. Some would frown at my decision, but at the end of the day the decision was mine and I felt it was int he best interest of my family and I. I was extremely disappointed watching the race from the side of the street after less than 1/3 of the race had been competed. But once again I had to own it.
For the road race the next morning I was very excited. It was a windy day and I knew the racing would be really hard. Even though others may not have thought I was very strong because of my lack of results for the weekend, I knew myself better. I fully intended to race aggressively and make the front group and content for the stage win. I was in great position going into a pivotal part of the race where the winning selection would be formed, only to realize as I got dropped from group to group that I had a rear flat tire. My race was over. The weekend was over.
On the drive home I thought about going for a ride that afternoon. I mean I had only done 11 miles that day since I got a ride back to the start/finish line from a friend in his car since the wheel truck had passed me when I realized I had a flat. I shrugged that notion off and came home and spent time with my wife and kids. It was time much better spent.
The next day I began a big week of training for me while on spring break. I didn't flinch for a second to follow my plan and have solid rides. The Corsicana Stage Race was the last thing on my mind this week. Are you the same way? Do you allow a less than idea performance to define you, or are you able to look past that performance and see it as an isolated event? Too many athletes have a bad race or competition and ponder it for way longer than they should. Champions are resilient. They understand that they will make mistakes or have circumstances out of their control contribute to a less than ideal performance. They know that one performance does not define them, even a good one. How much are you trusting in your training and abilities?