Goals. Dreams. New adventures. New challenges.
2017 culminated for me with all of those things coming together at once as I finished the year with my first multi sport event, a duathlon. If you don’t know that is a run/bike/run event. Find my recap on it here….. https://sassyfitnesschick.com/2017/12/05/duathlon-journey-the-recap/
It was certainly something I never saw myself doing a couple years ago, much less placing first in my age group, that’s for sure. I’ve found in the pursuit of these sports I love, I’ve had to lay a foundation and then just start building on it.
Running takes some serious base miles before you start extending distance. Even in distance running, there are days where I do interval runs to push myself faster. Short runs. Long runs. Speed. Or just easy miles.
Cycling in similar ways takes some base building although I found it fairly easy to transition to cycling. I guess all that running built some powerful legs that work on the bike too 😛
Of course, I can’t forget the strength training. Lifting weights, core work, and simple body moves all contribute to building a body for activities I love.
Starting into this year, without a scheduled event at this point, I still practice a variety of activities during the week, just not as intense right now. Well.. mostly… haha
One of my training sessions is always a bit tough and it should be because it’s all about building strength.
What you may be wondering, do I speak of ?
If you want to build your legs and butt, do hills. If you want to turn your cardiovascular system into an efficient machine, do hills.
And when I say do them, I mean frequently. Start walking them, eventually you can run a part, and then finally, you will scale up them like nothing.
Hills singlehandedly make me feel like a beast, whether I’m on foot or bike.
That being said, 5 miles on foot this morning, with plenty of hill repeats. As I turned around and headed back, I saw the hill in front of me, the one in this photo.
As I approached it I started thinking about what it felt like on the bike. I felt the familiar… I’m not sure what is the best word here… fear? it’s more like a healthy respect of something that is bigger than me. No matter how many times I do it, when I see it in the distance, I feel that anticipation and adrenaline rush.
Immediately the thought came to mind… “what are you afraid of?” I already knew the answer before it came.
“Failing”. My inner dialogue continued.. “and have you ever failed? Have you ever failed to do what’s in front of you?”
The answer was “No”. Not even in my beginning cycling days when I’d be in the wrong gear and have to muscle it up did I ever NOT ride all the way up.
I was reminded (again) that if I dont do something that puts a healthy fear in me, it’s not a challenge, I might as well go home.
I just can’t do that.
It just feels so powerful when I accomplish something that challenged not just my body, but my mind. I’ve found tremendous growth occurs when I let that “healthy, fearful respect” of something challenge me. And when I’m challenged in that way, I’m changed.
It helps me see and understand I don’t have to be limited in what I do. The important part is being available and going after it.
I was having a tire fixed on my bike today. I thought it was “just” a flat. It turns out it was the tube and tire… gone… shot.
When I do it, I do it up right haha
Anyway, the guy who owns the place and sold me my little Cannondale has encouraged my cycling endeavors and made sure the bike was in top condition before my duathlon. He asks me today… ” soooo is a triathlon in your future?”
Why yes, yes I did laugh.
He looks at me… “you don’t swim?”
My response, “Oh I can ok enough, but I’m certainly not a competitive swimmer.”
He gives me that level look and says, “of course you know you can do it. Just get out there”
Here’s a little not known secret about me… I just don’t like having my face in the water. It really just weirds me out. And I will seriously need to move past that if I’m to consider a tri in some distant future.
Am I capable? I know I am. I never saw myself as a long distance runner or now a duathlete, yet here I am.
I guess you could say there’s a bit of healthy fear when I look a triathlon fully in the face. I’ve felt it each time I’ve considered a bigger athletic goal.
I either look it in the eye, stomp down those feelings and tackle it… or… I turn and run and never know what I’m fully capable of achieving.
What about you? Can you relate to any of this? Have you felt a healthy fear of pursuing something that seemed way bigger than you thought possible?
If something scares you… maybe you just need to go ahead and do it. You’ll never know how it will grow you until you let it stretch you outta your comfort zone.
It’s outside of our comfort zone we discover what we’re really made of.