Sunday, June 22, 2014

Fulfillment of an Endurance Athlete

Me and my siblings
What is the first thing you think about when you get out of bed in the morning? Me? I'm pretty sure I just jump out of bed, and immediately look at my phone to see how many alarms I slept through!!! I am one of those. I was on the phone with one of my many nurses about a week and a half ago and she was telling me about her husband. Apparently, her husband sets his alarm for 3 am and SHE hits the snooze alarm for him for three hours, until she forces him to get out of bed. Enabling? I'd say so. She told me she didn't know how to fix the situation, and I immediately said, why don't you sleep on the couch, or in another room until he figures out how to get himself out of bed. Makes sense, right? When I said this, it was as if she had never considered that she might be enabling him... And then I started wondering, who was really the patient in this relationship anyway, but I digress...

Being goofy
I believe that what we think about first thing in the morning is important. For instance when you are starting to date someone new, often times that is the first thing you think about when you wake up, or a break up, or your new ailment... The thing is, what I think about in the morning changes very drastically from day to day, but it is important to pay close attention! An example, for those of you who prescribe to heart rate training, there are some rules about how you should work out based on your resting heart rate when you wake up. That is way to scientific for me, so I just stick with working out for working outs sake. If I were a speed demon, or trying to become one, perhaps my heart rate would be much more important to me, but for now I'm just going to stick with what I am doing.

Helping a friend
Why am I pontificating about all of this stuff? Well, because I wrote a post some time ago about loving what you love, and not worrying about what everyone else loves around you. I also have posted about how we should all strive to be happy, in some random posts about trees being happy while equating myself to the Giving Tree story. I seriously wonder about myself sometimes. Anyway, the one thing I am learning a lot about lately is that this whole athletic thing is NOT meant to be easy. Afterall, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it. When I wake up on a Sunday morning and the first thing I think about is that I am 100% exhausted from all the activities leading up to my long Sunday ride, I have to remind myself that when I do this big 175 mile ride in August, I might feel exactly like I did today. The true nature of an endurance athlete is not giving up even in tough times, and so I don't...

Niagara Falls
Here is the problem with being an endurance athlete though, life gets put on hold for all the fun and exhaustion of training. If you don't believe me, come and look at my kitchen floor and take a wild guess when I last washed or swept the floor. I have always promised myself that my athleticism wouldn't take over my entire life, and this summer, I have started feeling like it has taken over a bit especially when Sue talked about her need to go to the grocery story (she has been saying this for several weeks), and I talked about my need to clean my house, clean my car, relax, etc. And then I looked around and thought hard about what is MOST important to me, and the list is the same as always... my friends and spending time with them, growing some vegetables, cooking, being goofy, spending time with my family, baking pies, preserving food, hiking, entertaining, helping my friends, crossing finish lines, enjoying nature... I haven't seen my family in awhile, but I'm going to see them in a couple of weeks, I went to Niagara Falls a couple weeks ago, I made pies two weeks ago, tried making jam last night, walked to see a baby bison today, cooked dinner on Friday night, planted my garden (oh and Sue came over and weeded it last week), my workout buddy is my closest friend so I am spending time with her and I see other friends when they are available, I have a BBQ scheduled for later next month, Sue and I have been working on her house this weekend. So you want to know what has been missing from the MOST important list? Let me tell you... NOTHING!!!

The happy race crew
Sure, I haven't cleaned my house in awhile, my laundry is stacked up on my futon (I think that means my mom needs to come and visit), I haven't watched TV in several weeks, but the core things that make me fulfilled in life are all still present, if not at the forefront of my life. This life is NOT easy and is not for everyone, but I have my best friend by my side, my families support, and I get to enjoy the things I love squeezed in between workouts. I would say I am fulfilled as an endurance athlete. 

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a satisfying life to me.