STRONG IN 2018

I’m excited to see how 2018 will finish! I’m ready to embrace all the great things about this year coming my way.

But first….December. The kids are out for just over 4 weeks in December. It’s a very, VERY long time for them to be out anyway – but throw in some Christmas chaos and it makes for a very long break. They have done lots of different things such as… swimming, bowling, 5 days at a trackout/camp, rocket launching, learning new card games, used a new Wii from Santa, made cookies, hiked, and played with their favorite toys…..boxes & recycle stuff from all the gifts. :/  I’ve also been in PT for a rotator cuff injury that I’m hopeful will be better soon so I can get back in the water!! Kinda’ pissed about that. Really miss swimming right now but it’s not forever. And my PT said that it would be totally ready for the season next summer.

So my word for 2018 is STRONG. I was looking at my Garmin data from 2017 and the thing I was the most consistent in tracking was swimming. From Jan 31 through Oct 7 I documented nearly all my pool swims, minus a few here & there. I swam 39 miles based on what I recorded. HOLY CRAP, THAT’S A LOT OF SWIMMING! And then I started seeing other similar posts about swimming 100, 120 miles, etc. which makes my 39 miles pale in comparison. But wait, it’s so true that comparison is the thief of joy. Those other miles are from people training for full Ironman(s), probably with swim experience, and probably with the natural gift of athletic ability. Part of being STRONG is putting that type of nonsense and comparison to the side and focusing on how F cool it is that I swam 39 miles!

So here are the official goals for 2018:

  • Continue to represent Velocity Sportswear for the third year in a row!
  • Possible team tri for Raleigh Half Ironman again (?)
  • June 24th Smile Train Tri
  • September 16 OBX sprint tri
  • October 13 Wilmington HIM with my hubby (swim & run….so that means I’m committing to my first 13.1 mile run!)

To get ready this winter I needed to have a space for the treadmill & bike trainer so I set up a commitment space. No excuses if it’s down the hall! It’s hard to see but on the front/top of the treadmill my youngest made a sign that says “strong”…and The Hulk is pictured below as well. He will be my inspiration while I’m building back up on the trainer this winter. I’m excited for some new endurance challenges this year!

 

 

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Own that $hit!

Perspective is everything, right?

Who you hang around – in person or virtually – determines where your “normal” is, right? If you hang around people who drink a lot, that’s normal. If you hang around people who exercise a lot, that’s normal. If you hang around people who are creative, that’s normal. If the people in your life are kinda’ jerky, that’s your normal. If you hang around people who are Ironman triathletes, that’s normal. On & on & on & on…  The idea of normal becomes very relative to where you are in your life journey. It’s also easy to forget that not everyone shares the same normal as you, or will see you as you see yourself.

Normal

Today I went to my ear doctor and figured since I was there, I should ask about ear plugs that are better than what you get at the drug store. So I mentioned that I swim 2-3x a week and do triathlons. This had not come up in previous visits. She asked me how long of a swim I was doing (since I mentioned I had one coming up & wanted to get my ear problem fixed before then). I told her the swim was just under a mile, but that I had done the Half IM swim back earlier this summer as well.

Silence & shock. More silence. The sound of silence.

Silence-header

Finally she said, “…WOW! those are real triathons!”

It’s easy to forget that most people DON’T swim regularly, don’t train for swims, or do triathlons at all. We’re a strange bunch. But it was a good reminder that even on days I don’t feel like a badass, it really is pretty cool that I can swim a mile. I wanted to jump off the table & say “Yessssss, I get it, I might not look like I can do that but I can!!” It was one of those moments where her medical degree and my triathlon experience felt equal. Sometimes there’s a big disparity between a doc & a patient…like they are so much better than you. I could almost feel the equality gel between us, nearly tangible. It almost made her more willing to help me with the ear plugs now that she knew I wasn’t just piddlin’ around in the water. I was a “real” athlete so she should give me some legit options with my ears. It didn’t make me mad or offend me, but I did notice the dynamic between us shift a bit. Very interesting. I’m guessing that as a female ENT, with a very pretty presence (hair, makeup, heels, thin, kinda’ sparkly) she has felt that exact shift once or twice herself.

I def left there feeling awesome about myself. Own that badass $shit about yourself! Anything that makes you feel powerful, strong, resilient, and a badass….own that $shit every single day!

earplugs pink

So I left with a cheap pair to try out before doing custom plugs that are almost $200. I’ll see how it works! Hopefully that will help with my ear issues. In the meantime, I’m gonna’ own it! =) Hope you do too!

training day 1

Very tired after a long training day. Doubtful & hopeful, all at the same time. 9/4/17

 

The eclipse and triathon -what do they have in common?

eclipseIn addition to bringing people together through a rare scientific phenomenon, the eclipse highlighted something else. I heard so many people say something like this…”if I had been thinking ahead I would have X, Y, Z. I would have planned a trip around the totality zone..I would have got glasses for my kids….I would have taken the kids to the beach/mountains….I would have…”

I heard about this eclipse coming for a very long time. Kinda’ like Christmas. It wasn’t a surprise to me. How was this a surprise to anyone?? Especially to anyone fairly close to the totality zone. Here in Raleigh we were at 94%, but we could easily drive to the 99% zone – which is what my husband did and took this picture. Now, I get that it was weather dependent. If there had been rain or storm clouds, it would have been pointless and a total bust. So there’s risk with planning a big trip for something that might not happen. I get it. But isn’t that true with most anything? a beach trip, a camping trip, a trip where it could snow, a trip in hurricane season, a trip when the kids could get sick, on & on.

But that’s not really the point, the weather. The point is that so many people were in the “if I had known” mindset. Planning is so intuitive to me, it’s hard to imagine that I wouldn’t see this coming! Which brings me to the connection between triathlon & the eclipse. Knowing a big event is coming – like a triathlon or eclipse – requires planning, even if it’s just a little bit. Even with news & media shouting about it – IT’S COMING, IT’S COMING – we still dismiss it and say “meh…whatever, no big deal” ……………until it’s over.

Then we feel like this: crap, we should have made a plan to see it! we should have made a plan to finish the triathlon! we should have ridden that bike, committed to swimming, practice, leaned into the discomfort, embraced the burn in my legs…because the pain of regret really sucks. The rub of not sticking to the commitment is embarrassing. The depression of giving up on yourself is no joke. My oly distance is only a few weeks away and I’m feeling weary and really hoping I can finish without a DNF. I keep hearing that voice that says just drop back to the sprint distance, it’s ok! But I keep pushing that away. It’s loud and fierce in my head, but I will NOT step back. Only forward. And for me that means not saying the same version of “crap, I wish I had made a plan to see the eclipse.”