I’m literally one week out from my first tri of the season – South Beach Triathlon in Florida. At this time next week (writing this at 3:54pm on Sunday, 3/26/17) it will be over, I’ll be done, and I’ll probably still be high from the endorphins. Hoping I’ll have the medal around my neck. Eating an early dinner or late lunch. Or maybe I’ll be waking up from a well earned nap.
However…..let me just say that the doubt demons have been very busy in my psyche lately. Hip pain has affected my riding. The very real possibility of cold water and a wetsuit has really messed with my head. It’s not just the temp – an ocean swim is very aggressive in comparison to the pool for a lot of reasons…the waves, the salt, the tide, the instability of the water compared to a pool, jellyfish/fish/other things that I don’t need to mention by name… It’s a huge mental hurdle. Here is my first post about this wetsuit.
I signed up for this event about 11 months ago knowing that I’d have some big obstacles to overcome at the actual event and also a lot to overcome at the end of 2016 with some surgery that still affects my range of motion through my shoulder. It’s way better than it was a month ago but it’s still not 100% – so I’m doing this half mile ocean swim knowing that I’m not as physically capable as I could be.
So why DO I tri? I love this sport but it’s definitely a little bipolar. One day it’s a great swim at the pool, and then the next it’s horrible. Same with the bike, same with the run. It’s easy to get caught up in other people’s stories, goals, perspectives, speed, etc. For me there are so many great reasons to be involved in something that challenges you – it’s a great analogy for many things in life. Just a few bullets on #whyitri –
- Role model for my kids – do the stuff that scares you, even if it scars you a little. It’s better than having no scars.
- Challenge myself – sure, I could challenge myself with a large puzzle too. But this has some amazing side effects like a stronger body, bragging rights, membership into a very unique club of weirdos
- The high afterwards – OMG, does it get much better than the finish line? I mean, really… doing something that you thought was impossible is a damn fantastic feeling!
- Learning – there’s always something to learn in this sport, and even after a few years or doing sprints there’s SO much to learn, and the growth curve never ends.
- Eliminate limits – it’s easy to put limits on yourself. Tri has allowed me to not only challenge those limits, but say F-you to all the “cant’s” in my life.
I’m writing this #whyitri post to remind myself that I don’t *have* to do this, I *GET* to do this and I need to remember several things – embrace the suck, enjoy the journey, learn from this, and remember the badassery that is me. I’m hoping to represent Velocity Sportswear as a proud brand ambassador with a great season this year. #TriMafia forever! I bought this #fearless bracelet last year to remind myself to have faith in myself, resist the temptation to say “I can’t” and to encourage myself to focus on growth rather than looking at what I can’t do yet.
If you are part of the tri family, why do you do it?