The countdown

In a few short days I will be lined up at the edge of the Marine Combat Pool at Parris Island. I have been training hard and I am ready, despite a near breakdown in the pool on Thursday. We had “race simulation” as a team… there were about 9 of us. I started first. I had the option not to, but I wanted to see for myself. The others were faster than me so I was going to get passed A LOT. And kicked.

It started off fine… well, the 15 seconds I had the pool to myself before the next person started swimming! Mercy me. 1..2..3..4…everyone gets in the pool in 10-15 second intervals. All at once they were on top of me, around me, behind me. Water was splashing everywhere. I finally just stand up in the lane. Katie yells for me to keep swimming (if that is what you can call it at this point!) They are finally moving on but by this time my stupid head is away from me. I start thinking about the race on Saturday, the river swim in September… blah, blah, blah… here we go again. I stop at the edge “I am done”. ” I am not finishing today and I am not going to race next week”, I declare.

Katie looks at me calmly and sweetly and tells me to finish one more lap. “Do the catch-up drill” she says. I do and by the time I finish another lap my breathing has returned to normal. She says now do another lap. Yes, and you can imagine, she talks me through the rest of the 500 meter swim.

I finish the workout in a slow time, but considering I stopped for a little pity party my time wasn’t hideous. It won’t win me any prizes, but there should be a few people behind me on race day.

Fast forward to Saturday. I had a 28 mile bike ride in which 10 of those miles were “time trial” effort. I had to go as fast as I could for 10 miles, no stopping. I picked a hilly route, not flat. If I could do decent on a hilly route maybe I could be ok on race day. 41 minutes – that puts me happily mid-pack.

The last legs is the run – a 5K. I would like to think I could run it in 30 minutes, typically what I can do 3 miles in… but I just don’t know. I think I have decided to not put that pressure on myself (hahaha) and just go with it on race day. I can push through the discomfort. I just need to be calm and focused.

I have a full week this week with lots of pre-race tasks. Clean and check the bike and some “zen swims”.

Luckily, another tool I have on my side is yoga. Tonight we “breathed into our back body” and “behind our heart”. This was a very powerful visual tonight for me for some reason. I am going to try to use that focus in the pool tomorrow. If I focus on the back side of my heart, maybe I will get the back side of my head on straight!



  1. Danielle

    You are going to do great! Wish I could be there to cheer u on! You are an inspiration to me and so many others.

  2. Susette Schellin

    Laura! You are my hero! You are going to do great!! I also wish I could be there to cheer you on!!

  3. lauraph2009

    Thank you! I can’t wait to ride with you again.

  4. lauraph2009

    Thanks Danielle! I wish you could be there, too!

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