Is confidence a bad thing?

For the past week I have become very confident in my fitness while at the same time it has been hard to keep this new found confidence contained. While I am excited about the emergence of this confidence it is slightly premature and not yet warranted. However for the past couple of days I have started to think that I need my ass handed to me to put my confidence in check. I have even been debating about asking Matt or another training partner to annihilate me during a training session as a reality check. Fortunately, last night in the pool I was given that reality check and learned a few valuable lessons.

Last night I had a pool session that contained a main set of 400 repeats below T- Pace. Leading into this session I knew I was in for a tough yet attainable workout. After a reassuring warm-up I went to work. I felt unbelievable on the first 400, actually the best I have ever felt in the water. My stroke was smooth yet not rushed, I was gliding through the water, breathing was very controlled . . . this is what real swimmers must feel like. I ended up swimming about 25 seconds faster than what was required. I had now unintentionally (maybe intentionally) laid down a crossroads for the rest of my workout. At the start of my next interval I could either; chose to continue to hammer it out or return to reality and the prescribed game plan all the while knowing full well of the consequences/rewards for each.

I chose to drop the hammer and threw my coach’s game plan out the window. The next few intervals were meet with mild success. Immediately at the onset of the last interval I knew I was in for trouble. My arms felt like they were moving through drying cement rather than water. Stupid. Pathetic. Moron. Embarrassing. I had made the wrong decision and as a result I paid for it. I was 17 seconds slower than I should have been.

I knew the potential results of going too hard on the first interval but I did it anyway. FAIL.

With such a short amount of time to prepare for Miamiman I have been extremely vocal and focused on being 100% efficient while training. Last night I was everything but. FAIL.

I’m a goal setter and one of my goals is to be the best 70.3 distance athlete I can be. In order to do so I invested in a coach to assist me in reaching this goal. His guidance is vital to my success yet I totally disregarded it. As a result I didn't move any closer toward reaching my goal. FAIL. IDIOT.

And to think that I had just emailed Matt a couple days prior about a blog I had read by Jesse Thomas revolving around the idea of proving one's fitness. I don't need to prove my fitness. Actually, I never need to prove my fitness. I only need to celebrate my fitness on race day with the thousands of other competitors.

Did I do any true physical damage to myself after the swim last night? No, but it certainly put things back into perspective and reality.

Is having confidence a bad thing? Absolutely not. I however had too much confidence at the wrong time and it was causing me to lose focus on my goals and the task at hand.


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