Is It Worth It? Uhhhh YES!

“A secret to happiness is letting every situation be what it is instead of what you think it should be, and then making the best of it.”

Do you ever wonder if it’s all worth it? In my case, I am referring to sports. However, this could apply to school, work, relationships… We work so hard, sometimes only to be slapped in the face by a minor, or even a major setback. Despite the fact that I have been lucky this year with triathlon, I have had a few friends and athletes suffer from injuries or crashes. From my perspective, these injuries are minor setbacks. When it’s all said and done, those challenges will be forgotten as their goals, though delayed, will be reached. I have other friends and acquaintances who are going through epic life battles right now. These are the major setbacks that remind us what is truly important.

I am headed to Coeur D Alene, Idaho and I might or might not be racing an Ironman this weekend. The predicted temperature is 107 degrees. I haven’t quite faced the reality of the heat and I don’t see how they will actually hold the race as planned. My guess is that they will have a ½ ironman instead. I know that we are starting at 5:30am, but that is all they have told the athletes.

Ironman Coeur D Alene 2015, upon completion of the full distance, will be my 15th Ironman. I didn’t put much effort into these races until 2012, yet each one was a building block of knowledge and experience. I can honestly say, I trained harder for this Ironman Coeur D A’lene then I have ever trained before. I feel like I have said that for the last few qualifying events I have raced! I guess I just keep figuring out how to torture myself in new ways. I know when things are going well and when they are not. My mood is dictated by whether things are going well. You might have noticed, I have been in a great mood the past 8 weeks! My body is peaking, I can feel it. I have not been sick since November and have not missed one workout. I’ve had my challenges, like anyone else. However, I have been blessed to have everything go fairly close to plan. I am bummed that the heat will make the race a survival race, but again I am just happy to be here doing what I love. PERSPECTIVE!

My biggest challenge is always my own head. I think I have made a game out of beating my own mind. The novelty of the distance is a speck of the past. I’ve already accomplished my life goal of qualifying for Kona (twice). Yet I REALLY want to go back at least one more time! I can’t promise that it is just one more time, but you get my point!

It is really hard to bury one’s self workout after workout, day after day, week after week. It is pure dedication and drive based on motivation. My motivation – a calculated and fair opportunity to race in Kona 2015. That is all. I train because I LOVE swimming, biking and running. I dig to the depths I do because I want to reserve my spot at the pier in October- it’s that simple.

I have done countless key sessions during this build that have drug me to my limits. That drive of reaching my goal has been so powerful that I wouldn’t stop or give in to the discomfort. My drive and experience…that’s all I have. I really don’t have a lot of athletic talent. If you think I do, then you didn’t know me back when! I work extremely hard, for every bit of fitness and speed I have. Honestly my mind can handle more workload that my body can endure. Right now, I train for these Ironmans because it is worth it. I know that the ideal outcome is WORTH all of the training, sacrifice and energy. Mostly, because Hawaii is a special place to me. I swear I must have been Hawaiian in a different life. Think about it…do you know anyone else who loves coconuts, dolphins, plumerias and sun more than this girl? I didn’t think so.

Back to Ironman Coeur D A’lene. I am trying to prepare myself for anything that the race director throws our way. My best case scenario is we have some sort of long distance race (be it half or full). I really don’t want an Olympic distance race either. The swim is disproportionate and I will never make up the time lost. Worse case is they black flag the whole day and I will have to cope with my confused mentality. What will I do with myself? I would rather go into battle and lose, then to have never made if off the boat.

If I fail, or we don’t get to race…this will be a minor setback. I will probably have to recharge the brain batteries and figure out what to do next. It is part of the process. If everything were easy and given to us (whether we work hard or not), then it wouldn’t be of value. We must have challenges and setbacks in order to grow. It is an essential part of life. In the end; anything that is “worth it”, shouldn’t have an expiration date.