I am an admitted "event" enthusiast. I love doing the running, cycling, tri events. There is a great sense of accomplishment involved with training for, and finishing an event. You give it your all, or all you have that day, try to have a great time, and cross the finish line with your head held high.
However, early this summer, I had an epiphany (thanks to T-Pain, and a great album, I didn't have to use spell check to get that right!) I did WAY to much this spring. I mean I really over did it, and that taught me some valuable lessons.
If you look back to my 2010 Event Calender(on the right side of the page) you can see how busy I was, but just to reiterate starting in mid march it was something like:
Work an Event (my job is a Event Fund-raising Planner for the MS Society (in a nut shell))
1/2 Marathon (travel to Atlanta)
1/2 Marathon (travel to OBX)
1st Triathlon (travel to White Lake)
Wow! Stop the presses, really, did I do that. Have something to do every weekend. Well yes sir I did. And to top it off my wife didn't get to travel with my parents and I to any of the events. Please don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining, I had a really good time with my parents, and my dad did the 2 1/2 marathons with me. It was good, but it was also too much. It was also my first semester in an MBA program(part time), and I implemented two other new events for the MS Society in early Feb. and early March.
By the time that tri was over I didn't want to do anything but rest. I was burnt out, and just wanted to hang out. The middle part of my calender for the year had the 3 mountain madness cycling ride (of which we chose to do the short distance) and the biggest event all year for me, our wedding. But after that, I had a metric century (62 mile ride) scheduled for the weekend I got back from our honeymoon. That was the first event to go. Other events at that point were: 1st weekend in Sept - 1/2 Marathon in VA Beach, 2nd weekend in Sept - Tri in DC, 4th weekend in Sept work all weekend at our Bike MS event, October 1/2 Marathon, November 1/2 Ironman at Beach to Battleship.
The first thing to go was the bike ride, and then I really started doing some soul searching. What are my reasons behind the events, do I need to do all of these. Do I want to be traveling so much and just being busy, and being back in school for semester two of the MBA. I thought long and hard about the training that would have to be done, every sat and Sunday morning would practically have to be spent doing a longer run or ride to get ready for the two tri's.
In June I really enjoyed just exercising and spending time at the gym. Group exercise classes were a great way to burn calories and improve body tone, but I had to make some decision.
After soul searching, weighing the pros and cons, and discussing things with my support crew(wife, mom, dad and friends) I decided that most of those things were going to have to go. I was able to transfer the tri in DC to someone else. I asked for my 50% refund for the half ironman, and that made me feel so at peace.
We will still go to VA Beach and do the 1/2 Marathon, but due to some injuries for my dad, we may jsut be walking it. Thats fine with me, I don't like to train to run long distances in the Summer anyway. I kind of take a summer running hibernation. I stop my outdoor running (and most all running for that part) sometime in May and pick back up in October or November. Easier to run in the winter than bike.
I think that part of my love (somewhat of an event obsession for a while) for events was I was also trying to prove something. Prove it to myself, and others around me. Trying to prove I could, trying to prove I was strong enough, good enough? I'm not quite sure what I was trying to prove, or if I even really was but I think that might have been part of it. I'm in a great place in my life, where I know I don't have to prove anything. I just need to keep being me and living life and enjoying every step of the way. Some of the decisions to lighten the load and dump events were: I want to play softball with my friends, I want to be able to golf on a Sunday morning, I want to sleep in with my wife, I want to enjoy lazy days by the pool, I want to grow my photography business, I want to be able to not do anything for a whole weekend and not feel tied to a training plan. Ride if I want. Watch riding on tv if I'd rather.
I thought Beach to Battleship was a big goal of mine, but it turns out that just finishing the tri was what I really wanted to know I could do and I did that at white lake in May. Beach to Battleship has a cool name and good appeal, but I don't have the desire at this point to go out and exercise 3 sports for 6-8 hours. Thats a long time in the "saddle" and right now, and possibly never, its just not something I want to do. I wish all my friends who are going to have great success and a tailwind the whole way!
I'll be focusing on having fun, exercising with Tara, my MBA classes, and continuing to get my photography business off the ground.
There's the story why I dropped the subtitle for now. One might come back in the future, but I'm not heading 2 Beach 2 Battleship, and I couldn't be happier!
For everyone out there striving to get to that next finish line, just make sure you are enjoying every step of the way there or you're not living it up to the fullest, and as long as you make it to the start line, you can hold your head high and know that you've put in time, effort, blood, sweat and maybe even tears to get there. Go out and have the best race you can!
Until Next Ride....