A few weeks ago one of my athletes, Leslie Holton, completed the Odyssey Double Ironman (Tampa, FL) with over 30 minutes to spare. In spite of a bike crash, blisters upon blisters on her feet, and multiple laps in the pool, bike and the run (run course was 1.7 miles long, roughly 30 laps?) Leslie is still smiling and planning on her next big adventure….The Deca Ironman in Sicily, Italy at the end of September (that’s 10 IM’s in 10 days).
Most of use mere mortals just shake our heads, and wonder….WHY?
To be honest that is the answer all marathoners and triathletes are asked every day (and we even ask ourselves too)….Why do we do this?
My answer to this question is that our chosen sports allow us to finish something, to see a final product that is singularly OURS. Not a project from work that never seems to end. It’s not a job that is so repetitive that the only way we stay where we are is because of the paycheck at the end of the week. It’s not a profession where you are never sure of how you stand in the grand scheme of the organization.
Our races will always signify the end of a project, and we can clearly see how we stand against others. There is finality in every race that we do. If we do well, it’s because we’ve prepared to the best of our abilities. If we don’t do well? Then the only thing we can generally blame is ourselves (or Mother Nature).
Our respective sports allow us to test our limits, and the only person who will be disappointed or ecstatic will be ourselves. There is no team to let down, no boss to fire you…only you.
So when you get to the starting line of your event, know that you’ve chosen your specific sport (or distance) because it’s all about how you define yourself, and what limits or expectations are in your mind.
And remember to tackle something big some day in your life because you never know what heights you might reach by just toeing the starting line.