Monday, May 19, 2014

Forgoing Team USA / New (tentative) plan for 2014

After some thought, I have decided to forgo my opportunity to race in Edmonton this year on Team USA. There are a few reasons for this.

Financial. My out-of-pocket expenses for diagnostic procedures and my "thromboendarterectomy" surgery are over $2000. That's not an insignificant chunk-o-change for us to absorb. I estimate that expenses to race in Edmonton would come to at least $3500 by the time I factor in race registration and uniform ($500), lodging ($1000 if I share a room for the USAT package), food and incidentals ($600), and airfare for me ($1000) + bike ($400).

Scheduling / Logistics. USA Triathlon Nationals are August 9-10 in Milwaukee, Worlds are August 26 - September 2. That would be two major trips in three weeks and feels like too much to ask of the family (including Oma who takes over for me when I am gone) particularly right at the start of the school year.

Readiness. I would need to register/commit by the end of this month, and I can't predict where my return/recovery will put me three months from now. I think it's better not to have that pressure this year, to take a slightly more relaxed approach this season.

Long-term balance. I want to remain in the sport and enjoy it for many many years to come. Racing last year with the constant stress of my leg problem took a bit of a toll. I think I need to focus now on getting re-energized, staying healthy, and regaining confidence. Toward this end, I plan to take advantage of some local events and add more road races into the mix. I want to do the things I have passed up the last few years with such a focused race schedule - 5Ks, the Draper Mile, the sprint triathlon at Claytor Lake, and the Hokie Half Marathon. This is my proposed race schedule for the year, assuming I feel OK moving forward. (Dr. Davidson said I should be "firing on all cylinders" by the end of June).
I explained to Coach Jim that I'd rather have a plan and need to change it than to have no plan at all. This gives me things to look forward to, but I will not hesitate to delay/cancel if needed.