Training for a ‘Worst Day’

One of the tips that my sister and I received at the Endurance Sports Expo back in March was from a professional triathlete who said, “Everybody trains for the best race of your lives. I find it more helpful to train for the worst.”

This weekend, we learned what he meant.

My sister and I spent Saturday attempting our second trial run for the DiamondGirl Pennsylvania triathlon next month. I write “attempting” because, after two hours, we’d managed to bike only eight miles of the 10-mile road course thanks to two flat tires on her bike.

It was an educational day, for sure. I had my first flat tire about a month ago, maybe six miles from home, and had to call my husband to collect me after I grew insanely frustrated trying to change it. The next day, I spent an hour at the local bike shop getting a lesson in basic roadside techniques. That lesson served my sister and me well yesterday, when we had all the supplies and knowledge we needed to at least get ourselves mobile again.

The day of training was a bust in terms of priming our muscles, but it was a success in that we enhanced our coping skills. As the pro triathlete said, it helps to train for your worst day. I now know a bit about how that feels, and more important, how to handle a total breakdown without having a personal one.

It’s a good lesson for life, actually. I’m going to need more tools…

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