Recently, I completed my first sprint-level triathlon. I’m not blogging about this to brag. I am blogging about this because I believe I learned some valuable lessons from picking this goal and going after it, despite all of the reasons in my life that stood in my way. All the excuses, disappointments and “busy-ness” that had been whirling around my days didn’t prevent me from accomplishing this goal I had had for years.
One of the first barriers to this event was my lack of confidence. In fact, I signed up without a bike to use. I signed up without having entered a lap pool for years. I signed up when my business checking account was at its lowest. I also signed up when I was feeling low during one of the most difficult and long winters that I have experienced. I signed up on a dreary day when I felt rather lonely and misguided. Why? Because I just decided that I needed to find something to work towards. I signed up and then joined my local YMCA (which is the best family fitness center in my area, hands down.). I signed up and decided to use my son’s bike. I signed up and ran in my snowshoes down the road.
Another barrier was my physical body. I was fighting some illness and anxiety that I couldn’t shake. It turns out that my weakness, fainting spells and panic attacks could later be explained by my low iron levels, but that wasn’t for a few months. So, when I felt tired, I slowed down. When I felt yucky, I did light stretching and yoga. When I was just exhausted, I watched reruns of SATC on E!
The last barrier to my success was fear. I feared falling off a bike. I feared making a total fool of myself. I feared being alone on race day without a clue. I feared that I would stop and fail. Worse, I feared that I would get too anxious and not show up for race day. All of these irrational fears were conquered with the unconditional love and support of my husband. He picked me up and encouraged me each and every time I felt low. In fact, I really don’t know if I would have accomplished finishing this race without him. He was there during my hurried scurry between events. He was there at the end with a huge hug. He was there, exclaiming how excited he was for me and how much he was proud of me. He was there with his ever warm and loving heart.
So… thank you, Derek. You have been there, not only in my triathlon transitions, but all of those rough transitions in my life. You have been there during my fabulous moments and during my soul-wrenching ones. You have never given up on me, professionally or personally. You know that despite all of my faults and mistakes, I have a good heart, a heart that I follow…
I love you.