Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Balance

I get asked a lot how I find the time and or motivation to train so much. To put so much effort and energy into swim, bike, run, eat, sleep repeat. The biggest comment and question of all is, don't you get tired of not having a life?

I'm starting my 5th year of training for an Ironman. My first started in 2007 (also when I started this blog) and then in 2009 the LaPan's decided to take the year off from Ironman training/racing. After back to back Ironmans (CDA) and then some other racing hear and there we decided we would back off the distance and do smaller shorter races to maybe gain some speed back and do the things we thought we were missing out on. The plan didn't go quite as planned, and before we knew it a 40mile bike ride seemed like an 80mile bike ride and a 5 pm cocktail was a lot more common than a 5pm post work swim. Truth be told we pretty much just got fat and out of shape. And, if I'm being honest we also were a lot less happy.

To say we (Shane & I both felt the same way) were motivated and excited once we finalized the details and registered for IM Canada last January is a VERY large understatement. I felt excited again and loved filling out my little training log every day! I started training with a new group of people and found new workouts, challenges and motivation all around me. Not that I was sick of my old group, but life changes and different desires set in and it seemed like Shane & I were the only one's left from our core group still out there training and racing triathlons. A new coach with a very less structured training philosophy and tons of new nutrition advice was just the icing on the cake.

Last year was also the longest consecutive training either of us had ever done. We always went on a 5-6month plan, and well after the A race was done, we kinda let our fitness slide. We'd get back into the routine of attending parties and more frequent happy hours, sleeping in on the weekends and long weekends out of town. And then the pants would get a little bit tight and the liver would hurt and an overall feeling of less healthy would set in.

So, I think about those thoughts and feelings every time someone asks if I miss having a life. If I ever get sick of the double and triple workouts and the constant hunger and feeling tired and sore. If I hate missing out on this party or that party or god for bid an 8pm dinner reservation because, well that is just too close to bed time.

My answer is no. This is my lifestyle, this is what makes me happy. And, anyone who REALLY knows me also knows that it's not what defines me. Most of you have had multiple invites for our long weekends down in Mexico, our second home. And, those of you who have joined us for these adventures also know that it's certainly not all work and no play. Those of you who haven't, come on down - I'm show you :-)

It's taken me a while to master the art of the proper hydration and rest and making myself do a 2hr run on the beach after a day of sitting in the sun and running around town and eating chips and salsa and drinking margaritas with a side of extra tequila.

I know these weekends of play are going to get a lot harder as the season builds, but for now I think I've got the balancing act down pretty well. Most of all, I'm happy fitting it ALL in :-)

Cheers.

4 comments:

Molly said...

I totally get it - and I don't think of what we do as not having a life at all! We spent time being active with the ones we love, what is better?

hilary said...

Amen.
I'm not a distance triathlete.
But I do have a sport which consumes my "free" time, which requires me to eat fairly healthily and not drink to excess (often), which means I'm not free for happy hours or whatever.

But I have a life I love. The hard workouts, the sore muscles, the figuring out a new trick. And it sounds like you have a life *you* love. And a partner who loves it just as much. Totally awesome.

mtanner said...

Here Here! I get it and so do those that support me! Cheers to putting it out there.

blw627 said...

Well said : )