Jenny’s Triathlon Diary: Setbacks

When you’re training, there comes a moment when you feel like you’ve really hit your stride. Day by day, you get a little faster, feel a little stronger, and travel a little farther. And then, wham: Enter the setback.

We all hit one sooner or later, and mine came in the form of a virus that forced me to spend more than a week immobile on my couch. Closely following (and unfortunately, somewhat overlapping) was a long-anticipated maternal visit from the great state of Texas. Combined, two much-needed weeks of swimming, cycling, and running disappeared from my calendar.

As someone who often gets hurt (my friends and family can attest to the weird ways I seem to injure myself), I’m no stranger to setbacks. It may seem obvious, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned about them, it’s that you can only move forward. Admittedly I haven’t always subscribed to this school of thought. During training for the last (and only other) triathlon I did, an ongoing bout with tendonitis reared its ugly—and painful—head, sending me into a spiral of self-pity. News flash: Self-pity doesn’t get you anywhere.

This time, instead of wallowing about my missed workouts, I’m simply picking up where I left off and pushing myself that much more. My aforementioned on-and-off injury flared up after my run earlier this week, but instead of getting upset, I’m just swapping this week’s remaining runs with strength training sessions. Giving into the setback won’t get me any closer to the finish line—I’m going to get there even if it means my course is more of a zigzag than a straight shot. Aren’t zigzags what life’s about, anyway?

Check out Jenny’s previous training diary installments!

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