Last fall, I would not have believed I would ever be where I am now. 20 days before an Ironman with the big miles completed and healthy.
Well, if not healthy, then at least uninjured.
Recall: After signing up for Ironman Wisconsin in September, I severely injured my neck in October, and through equal parts ignorance and stubborness, did not know for several weeks that I had ruptured a disc between C6 and C7. All through November and December I was unable to swim or bike or lift weights.
Much of that time, I could not sleep more than four hours at a stretch, because that is how long the pain medication would last. Probably I was just being a drama queen, but I wondered whether I would ever be able to train again.
The surgeon was sure that he would be removing the pulverized remainder of the disc and fusing my vertibrae together. He was wrong.
Here I am. The story of how I got from there to here involves input from lots of folks, about whom I will write as I move toward and past Ironman. Right now, I just can hardly be happier that I am here.
I have done training rides of over 100 miles 4 times in the past 8 weeks.
I've done rides in excess of 100 miles 7 times since January.
Last year 60 miles was a full ride; now I don't even wonder how long I've been riding until it ticks past 80.
I am in marathon shape. More, it seems like I can run tired as long as needs be.
I swam 5000 yards on Friday and suffered more from boredom than from effort. Little more than two years ago, 500 yards was unthinkable.
The only thing between me and the start line are some average workouts and a taper.
My first two marathons killed me with plantar fascitis and other injuries. Today, with all this volume, I am completely uninjured.
The only discomfort I have is some stiff quads and a bit of a cold.
I am almost 41 years old, and I'm not the second coming of Dave Scott, but I tell you one thing for sure. I could kick my own 25 year old ass.