Tuesday, October 11, 2011

growing a pair ...

i have always wanted this blog to have a positive vibe and to never be a place to bitch and moan.  but for the last few months and maybe more my life has not been going to plan and while i have alluded to issues i have never come right out and talked about it.  well this is my blog and i am going to start telling it like it is.  time to get something outta my head and off my chest. 

first up i love triathlon.  i am mad about it.  i love competing, i love talking and reading about it and i love watching it.  i am a big fan of the sport - both the itu and ironman.  it is a passion.   however i am not very good at it and i think at 47  i am not going to get much better.  but that is okay because i am not doing it to be the best.  i am doing it to be the best that i can be.  i do it because it is fucking hard.  i do it because sometimes it scares me.  i believe triathlon makes you a better person and that is what i want.  call me naive sometimes but i realise that what motivates me is not going to be the same for everyone.  some people are in it just to win.  not to get the best of themselves but just to win.  that is how i see it anyway and it is okay.  there is nothing wrong with wanting to win.  i guess it is how you win that matters.  i grew up playing team sports so i may have developed a different outlook.  one where you watched out for team mates and you helped them out and you didnt win as an individual - you won as a team. 

so when i started this adventure and since i have met some really great people who are positive and wonderful individuals.  but i have also been disappointed and this is what i want to get off my chest.  at the beginning i was always catching up with this one girl at each event.  we are in different age groups as i am five years older but we are pretty close in abilities.  so we became triathlon friends and it was fun.  i always knew what races i wanted to do and i had a plan.  sometimes i talked my friend into doing the same events.  it was even more fun to have company.  after that first year the only race that i finished ahead of my friend was our first olympic distance at point walter.  most races played out with me out of the water  first, ahead on the bike and then i would get past on the run.  my friend even said that at times i helped motivate her to run faster and that is fine.  i could tell where i was in a race knowing where she was so it worked both ways.  and remember we are not in the same age group.    

then last year it became a little more serious.  i knew i wanted to do busselton 70.3.  it was all i had thought about since the year before.  it was what i thought about during every run, every bike and every swim.  i talked my friend into doing it.  i said we were ready.  i had my races picked out and my training plan ready.  if you have followed this blog then you will know that my season races didnt go well.  i was always competing on tired legs.  my friend came in before me at every event.  i was now behind on the swim and the bike.  but i had a bigger goal and that was busselton.  i am a competitive person and at times it was difficult knowing you could get a better result if it wasnt for the training.  but i kept reminding myself of the bigger picture.  having people beat me all the time wasnt as bad as just being disappointed in your own personal result.  i wanted to run faster than i had before - not run faster than someone else.    i wanted to have that swim that i know is in me.  i wanted to have that fast bike split and see the improvement. 

i read a great deal,  i have done alot of research and being a newbie i have spent a lot of time learning everything i can.  i love doing it and i dont mind sharing what i know.  at the start my friend and i discussed what would be required for a 70.3 race.  then during the season we caught up a few times outside of race meets as she wanted to discuss my plans further.  at this point i started to realise that i was probably being pumped for information but i truly did not mind helping out.  why would i ?  we were friends right.  then i found out that my friend was doing things and not mentioning it.  things that you would talk about.  still i told myself it didnt matter and it wasnt important.  i will be honest and as busselton approached this started to do my head in a little bit.  i was confused about why i was competing and wondering why i didnt have this mad drive to win.  win what though ?  i just wanted to finish my first 70.3 event. 

so the race comes around and after everything was said and done and written about here i had a truly great day and an awesome result.  all the hard work, training, bad results, no support, money, falling asleep while reading another tri book, sore feet, fear, doubt  - it was worth it.  i could not get the grin off my face.  it was one of the very best days and a highlight in my life.  it felt fantastic to  look at where i had come from - a pack a day smoker.  however i finished ahead of my friend.  and since then things have not been the same.  i am not a complete dummy and i can tell when a persons attitude to you is different.  this is very different.  i have given it time but nothing has changed.  i love this sport and i am really proud of my result at busselton.  i dont want to feel bad about it.  we should be celebrating.

i guess the other factor that needs to be considered is each persons perspective.  i considered this person a friend but my world consists of a very small circle.  i dont have a family and most of my friends do not live in perth.  so while i may look at her as a friend the reverse is that i am probably just seen as an acquaintance. 

i recently finished reading macca's book and i like what he has to say and that he is not afraid to say it.  he has these insights and includes comments that i think sums up how i feel -  'íf you dont have the passion and love the process, if the results are all that matter to you, then there is no depth to what you do.  there is nothing to pull you out of the dark hole when you fall in.  training, surpassing limitations, developing strategy, finding the strength to endure the suffering is trans formative.  you become a better person when you manage to do something as insane as swimming, biking and runing 140.6 miles in the same day''.

while reading back over this i noticed that i was hearing my brothers voice in my head.  clear as a bell and  he is telling me to friggin toughen up and grow a pair.  and he is right because when it comes down to it i am not the one with the problem.


Anonymous said...

Dude, There is no "I" in TEAM and that has been your mindset and that is awesome. It is why you helped your friend with ideas etc before Busselton. She did not help you because she is all about the "I" and when you beat her? She is jealous and that is petty and childish and you dont need that person in your life. Very sad she is that way.
We are very proud of what you have accomplished and wish we were there to offer physical support.


Anonymous said...

Also....NEVER LET ANYONE steal your JOY for what you are accomplishing.