Thoughts and Adventures From Greenlite Heavy Industries

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

In It To Win It

I have a good friend who says “adventure isn’t a race,” but on the flipside a race is a race, and I have to ask myself if I’m not racing then what am I doing on the course. I guess I should backup here; I’ve done a number of marathons, an ultra marathon, two Ironman races, who knows how many century rides and even a double century ride, but I’ve only participated I’ve never raced. If somebody passed me who cares, certainly not me, good luck brother, more power to ya sister, have a nice day, but lately I’ve been asking myself, hey man if you’re not trying to win then what exactly are you trying to do.

This line of thought really came to a head this past weekend during the Hagg Lake Triathlon down near Portland. I couldn’t do the race due to a lower back pain, but I went down with my two friends Stephanie and Piper and Piper’s high school buddy Jenna. The thing about Steph and Piper is the fact that they showed up Saturday morning ready and able to win the race – in the end Piper did win and Steph placed third. I mean they were in it to win it. This is totally foreign to me.

I’ve never entered a race with even the faintest idea of winning the thing I’ve always been the guy who was simply happy to be there: you know the line every finisher is a winner. I have one more Ironman in me and I have to ask myself just what am I doing out there. Currently I’m in the no man’s land somewhere between qualifying for the World Championships at Kona and simply crossing the finishing line in under seventeen hours. This is an eight hour gap.

I suppose the real question I have is how much is physical and how much is mental. No matter how many baskets I shoot in the driveway I’m never going to play in the NBA, this is just fact. No matter how many miles I ride I’m not going to ride the Tour. So what about being competitive in my age group in Ironman: in other words if I train harder and smarter and become willing to tolerate more race day pain would I be able to be competitive or is it a hopeless cause.

Before I step onto that beach in Coeur d Alene next year I’m going to have to decide am I in it t
o race or am I just out here for a long day with some nice people.

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