Maybe it is because the count down is real for Ironman Texas, less than five weeks. Maybe it is because I’ve been pushing myself to new limits in my training. It could be a lot of things but I found myself reminiscing about the feeling you experience when you cross the finish line. Then that got me thinking about what keeps me going. What it is that keeps me stepping outside time and time again to push my mind, body, and soul to its limit.
This won’t be a long post and maybe it won’t even be that interesting but I wanted to share my thoughts on this idea behind the feeling and how it has influenced me throughout my life.
Triathlon is all about chasing something. For some its the physical challenge. Others it’s the mental challenge. For me its the feeling; that feeling that overtakes you when you cross the finish line. It’s a feeling of complete utter exhaustion combined with an extreme high full of strength and passion that puts you on top of the world. You can say its the physical challenge or the mental challenge you crave but all of us experience this feeling and it is what hooks us. It is what keeps us coming back for more.
For me it is a feeling. To this day I can remember the feeling of my first triathlon and the passion it erupted inside me. To this day I can still feel the strength pouring out of me as I dug deep with six miles to go at Ironman Arizona. To this day I can still feel the elation, pride, and joy that flowed through my veins as I crossed the finish line of my first Ironman and the smile that plastered its way across my face as I celebrated with my family. That feeling flows through my veins like adrenaline. Its addicting, I crave it, and cash after it. There is something very empowering about that feeling which is why I think I keep coming back to it.
I often call this feeling my why.
You’ve probably heard many people say find your “why” or what is your “why”? What they are really looking for is the reason you do something. That why can be a lot of things and it is different for everyone. Maybe it is your children, a bad breakup, loss of a job, looking for a challenge, financial freedom, or a wide variety of things. This why, the thing that gets you out the door on a regular basis, is something that you should always allow to evolve and change. During your growth as an athlete or a person your goals and dreams are going to change which means the why that keeps you going will change.
I got into triathlon after going through a really tough breakup that left me feeling broken and void of any emotion besides anger; at that point the desire to find normalcy and emotion in my life again was my why. Since then I’ve married the love of my life, found my passion in coaching, launched my business, grown as an athlete, got hit by a car, went to kona, and so on. I am not the same girl who hopped on her bike on whim in an effort to try to find myself again and because of that my goals, dreams, and ultimately my why has changed. If I had hung onto the same why I had when I first started there is no way I would have allowed myself to grow as an athlete or a person, I’d just be stuck in this cloud of trying to find something that was already there.
Each time something in your life changes, your goals shift, then your why shifts just a little bit. Don’t be afraid to let it shift that just means you are growing and changing as an athlete and person.
This feeling or why can hit you out of the blue when you aren’t even looking for it. When it does do not be afraid of it, embrace it, breath it all in, and let it flow through your veins. It is when we give into the fear of letting this feeling overtake that we are prevented from achieving new heights. Don’t fear it, embrace it, let the goosebumps overtake you for when you do I promise the results will be amazing!!