Thursday, October 16, 2008

X is no Y

As I started writing this I thought of the statement "Oregon is no California" to describe the triathlon scene. After typing it I realized how simple statements can be construed in several ways. Depending on who said it and in what context it could be a positive or negative statement. For example, if you were discussing a training ride with someone for the upcoming weekend and they mentioned keeping an eye on the weather due to possible rain you might say "Oregon is no California", meaning that in California it's more than likely that the weather is going to be good and you don't even have to worry about it. However, if you were talking about driving 30 miles to meet up for a training ride and someone mentioned that it takes less than 30minutes to get there because there will be no traffic you might say "Oregon is no California" meaning that in California it's likely that traffic will be an issue. When I wrote "Oregon is no California" referring the the triathlon scene it instantly stood out to me as being "something a Californian would say". I didn't necessarily mean it in any particular way, I was just stating the facts - there are many more races offered throughout the year in California than there are in Oregon.

After looking over the posted races on and Slowtwitch I found a few options that are the distance I am looking for and are within a reasonable driving distance. Based on what I said above it would seem like there would only be one or two races on this list but there are actually quite a few. I was hoping to find a May race but the first one I could find was in the middle of June. Actually, I did find a couple in May but they have pool swims and I just can't get on board with those. Once I read through the races and checked their locations on the map I came up with a list that has one event in June (Sprint or Oly), two in July (Sprint or Oly), three in August (HIM and two Sprint/Oly options), and four in September (HIM, and four Sprint/Oly options). The spacing of these events really only allows for one in June, one in July, two in August, and two in September.

Now that I had my races picked out I started to think about what I wanted to do with this basket of options. Do I focus on sprints? Should I do a couple of sprints and an olympic or two? How about a sprint in June, an olympic in July, and the HIM in August? What if I focused on shorter races in the first part of the year and ended the season with the HIM in September? Last but not least; isn't it a bit early in the year to be thinking about this? I discussed the options with Jen since she is planning on another summer of triathlon and I wanted to get her opinion since she did a HIM last year and is most likely going to do another one this year. She echoed my statement about it being a bit early in the year to really make a decision but she did make a very valid point when she said I should see what I think after running the marathon and then decide. See, up until now I have always been a fan of short events. I like to go hard and be done as quickly as possible. Of course this begs the question "why not apply that same principle to a longer event"? It's not like people that are racing long events are out there taking their sweet time. They train hard to race hard, it's just that they train a lot more and race a lot further than I have in the past.

For now I'm just going to focus on the marathon and after that I'll focus on skiing for a while, which is something I am very excited about. It used to be a three hour drive to ski if there was no traffic, now it should take just over an hour - of course, that's because "Oregon is no California".


Marathon Maritza said...

No, no, no...I wanna hear how much "Oregon is no California" in the negative sense, and how much you hate it and how you guys are moving back.

Got it?


Tristram Wood said...

Hey Zach, I totally understand what you are saying as I do the same with Maine/NJ. Aside from the obvious with NJ, there are several races within 30 minutes of my house, but in Maine, not so much. BUT, the races in Maine are so gorgeous, its worth it. Good luck on your marathon, and stick with the short stuff- that way I can justify it too...(250 clams for a half race is crazy!)

Arizona is no Montana said...

Great job on the race this weekend Zach! How's the new job?