I’m super competitive by nature, sometimes to the point of ridiculous. Honestly, I don’t care how I stack up against anyone else – I’ll always have my unique way of thinking and seeing the world that others won’t always understand or care for. Such is life. The odd thing is that my competitive nature has nothing to do with being better than anyone else. It’s all about me (that should be my theme for 2010). What can I do to always be my best? That is the question that’s always on my mind and it compels me to move forth on my newest journey – competing in my first triathlon.
Swim. Bike. Run. Hmm…I’ve done all three before, but never at one time. Wonder how that’s going to work out. I couldn’t find a reason NOT to compete, so here I am, training for my first race (Breezy Point Triathlon) in June. I’m not looking to win, or to even place for that matter. This first race will be all about finishing (and the medal and t-shirt I get for playing. I also like my figure in my tri suit, but that’s for another post.) Future races will focus on speed and performance and how I can outdo myself for the next time.
So how did I get here? There are many factors, but the simple explanation is I needed a giant kick in the pants to lose some unnecessary weight I’ve been carrying since my 1st year of college. I think to myself, “If I can run 3 miles in this amount of time with all this booty and leg fat, then imagine how fast I’d be 15 pounds lighter!” As silly as it sounds, that is extremely encouraging for me. My goals for this year are sprint triathlon, century ride, 1/2 marathon, bodybuilding competition, and maxing my fitness test. Achievable, right? YES!
There are many experiences that lead me to this journey and this path. My main motivation is the desire to live until I’m 101 years old. Seriously! I plan to lead an active lifestyle until the day I die. I definitely don’t intend to be wheelchair-bound or bed-ridden in my old age – you might as well just put me out of my misery. Honestly, I’ve seen too many unhealthy lifestyles for my own good. There’s a point when you take a look around and say enough is enough and I reached that point. I’m disgusted at our society’s views of health, nutrition, and fitness. I’ve come to the conclusion that many of the ailments we see today are the result of poor diets, lifestyles, and lack of caring for our bodies in very basic ways. You can draw your own conclusions but mine are based on my own life experiences.
Your future is within your hands – it’s your world. Forget what everyone else is saying! I truly believe we each have so much power and potential for great and awesome things, but we often fail to capitalize on our own abilities. We participate in negative self-talk and divisive behaviors, harboring negative attitudes that keep us in our current situations. The first step on any journey is a positive mindset for the future. Along those same lines, many take a healthy body for granted. We complain about this ailment, make excuses for why we can’t exercise, and so on. Stop making excuses, stop complaining, and pick yourself up and go. There’s a difference between pain and injury, and a little pain never killed anyone (that I can think of). I often look at people with limited mobility and think about how much we take simple things like running or walking for granted. How much do they wish they had a first or second chance to run or dance?
For me, it’s all about leading by healthy example – an example I want to set for my family and those around me. I cannot make any claims of being super athletic, because I’m definitely not. Instead, I am confident in my ability to pursue what I want in life, whether it’s fitness, career success, happiness, etc. If I want to compete in a triathlon, I’m competing and nothing (and nobody) will stop me. That is the attitude I carry with me and it’s extremely empowering.
So whether your journey is physical, mental, spiritual, or professional, you are the creator and you must find the strength to begin that journey. Reduce and eliminate barriers to your own success and rid yourself of the negative influences in your life. Your happiness and your life depend on it!