Monday, March 17, 2014
Somebody one on of my favorite teams (you know who you are, Connie) asked in a message thread where I found my energy. Interesting question. Where *do* we find the energy to do what we do?
I personally don't buy the theory that losing weight gives a person any more energy. Although that may just be vocabulary. Without those extra pounds, I have different options on how to use the energy I had to start with. If I'm NOT carrying an extra hundred pounds around, I can use my muscles to do other things, my body does not tire out as quickly, etc. But I don't really have any more energy than I had.
I do believe that whatever energy we are blessed to have, we have choices about how to use it. That leads to the motivation and priorities in the title. We naturally want to spend the energy on things that are most important to us. And carrying around the excess pounds, i.e. spending the energy dealing with the after effects of overeating? Not my best choice, long-term. So deciding to spend some being active? Worth it to me.
An intense training schedule *does* shove some other things that others might consider important aside. So don't think I have more energy than you... just consider that I have my priority set on achieving a dream. I have decided it is more important than the things that I have moved downward on the priority list, and I make sure the training happens. That's normal... we all do it.
Don't go thinking I'm anything special, or that you can't achieve your own dreams. As the shirts I saw on the supporters of one triathlete said last year: "Ordinary man, extraordinary determination". That's the kind of athlete I am. And extraordinary determination has only one theme: "Never give up on yourself."
LIFE is good. It's better when I'm fit. It's best when I have companionship on the journey. Consistently following a plan, consciously choosing what will support the goals, creatively adjusting when "things happen", and GRATEFUL for every... single... day! Spark on!
Sunday, March 16, 2014
Yesterday's "brick" workout gave me a flash of insight into why I enjoy triathlon so much as a sport. Or multi-sports in general. Those of you who do the multi-sport events might consider whether you have experienced this or not.
Yesterday's blog reveled in the swapped grins that happened at the BEGINNING of my run, meaning as I started in on the second sport of the two-sport workout. The fact that this happened less than 5 minutes into the run says something to me: it says "Barb, you're still high from the bike ride!"
That led to an internal reverie. Most of us who run are familiar with the concept of the "runner's high", that blessed feeling we get at certain points where it seems like we are running easily, almost effortlessly, and could keep going forever.
Anybody who has ever worn a timing bib and crossed a finish line knows the huge high that comes from completing that goal.
Triathlon, with its three legs, and being an endurance event, combines those highs together into one. First, you swim, and whether swimming is your weakest or strongest or in between sport... you finish! High!
Now you prepare yourself in transition and start the bike leg. You're already high from both the activity and from FINISHING the swim! That high sustains you through the rigors of the bike leg, and you get ANOTHER dose of high, re-entering transition.
You're starting your run... already high from three kicks of high... activity, possibly achieving an athletic "ease" of hitting your stride, possibly not... but definitely the two from having FINISHED each leg before it. And when you find your running legs, an additional high on the run, followed by the ultimate high of the final finish line.
No WONDER I love triathlon!
LIFE is good. It's better when I'm fit. It's the best when I have friends and family along for the ride. With consistent training, conscious decisions, and creative gratitude... for EACH and every day, Spark on!
Saturday, March 15, 2014
As advertised, I waited until the thermometer topped 40F before heading out. It was a bit chilly at first, but it was sunny, and warmed up during my 17.6 mile bike ride, and I ended at home, changed into running gear, slurped down a Power Gel, and started out to run.
Coming over the rise in the trail you see in my page background, I encountered another runner... and both our faces just split into big grins! I was wearing the tech shirt from my first half marathon... and I thought... "this is what it's all about. No matter what happens... I had this run. I had this bike ride. No one can take that away."
The thing I have to say to anyone just starting out... if you have the desire in your heart to do something for yourself... don't put it off. Start today. Do something for yourself today. For once you've done it... no one can take this day away!
LIFE is good. It's better when I'm fit. Being conscious of how my body feels as I cycle or run is a blessing. Being creative about the best time and place to workout is a joy. Being consistent in moving toward what's really important to me... a pearl beyond price. And today, I'm just bubbling over with gratitude... for today.
Friday, March 14, 2014
What a nice coincidence... I noticed as I updated my notice boards this morning... I'm on day 70 of the mental toughness challenge, and it is 100 days to the Rev3 Wisconsin Dells Olympic distance triathlon.
Creative adjustments to the training plan observe that tomorrow is going to be the best weather day to work out outside, so I'm shifting my planned brick workout from Sunday to Saturday. That would have put the brick the day after strength training, and I did not like the sound of that, so I snuck an extra rest day into the plan, today, and will lift on Sunday, and have a rest day as planned on Monday.
What got left out? A swim. Why? Shifts eyes with a crafty half-smile... because I finished my 2.4 miles with my last swim workout, and if I don't over tire myself maybe... just maybe... I might get closer to that 112 bike miles. I need almost 60 more at this point. We'll see what I get in that brick tomorrow. I only have 11.6 miles left to run... it's that 59.19 bike miles that will tell the tale!
Oh, and I missed a date of significance... four years ago yesterday, I reached my initial goal weight at Jenny Craig. I "maintained" an additional 20 pounds off before calling myself "home in the range", BUT... it's worthy to remember that four years ago yesterday, they tossed the confetti and celebrated my successful weight loss!
I thought of that after saying back to OVERWORKEDJANET's blog this morning that we should start planning the day 91 party. I know DOGLADY13 has plans for a special glass of wine. I'm thinking Dark Chocolate, myself. Bubble bath? Mani- pedi? Massage?
What do you think, fellow challengers? What will YOU reward yourself with when we get to the end of the 90 days? I'm already feeling rewarded because my "winter weight" / "brinksmanship" pounds are gone, my skinny jeans are loose again, and I feel pleased and committed to self-care.
LIFE is good. It's better when I'm fit. Creatively, consciously, and consistently GRATEFUL, for each and every day of it!
Thursday, March 13, 2014
My thoughts have been wandering over my Spark friends, and the time we've had together, here in the safe virtual world of SparkPeople.com, and how it overflows into our real lives.
We find these kindred spirits by reading the posts, joining the teams, or participating in challenges. How many have been around since 2012, when TanaP71 posted the "30 blogs in 30 days" challenge, giving us a collection of specific topics to blog about?
Eventually, over time, we start "hearing each other's voices" in our heads... as DOGLADY13 and I did this past week!
Anyway, I just want *everyone* who reads to know how important you all are to me. I often say that I blog for myself, and I do... to keep my motivation strong. It's like those streak sticky-notes. At times the best I could do was a simple pep talk. Other times the endorphins run wild. Still others it's an assessment, a plan, a determination. Whatever it is, it's what keeps me going for that day.
I feel so privileged to have the peek into my Spark buddies' lives that their own blogs provide, too, and even to see that we're sparking along together by the comments that come back. It's an on-going conversation among folks who are traveling independent journeys, sharing the trail for a while, swapping helpful hints, and cheering one another ever onward.
I have to say, one more time, how much I LOVE SparkPeople.
LIFE is good. It's better when I'm fit. It's the BEST when it's with friends and family, too! Consistency keeps me fit. Conscious choices fuel the fit. Creativity keeps me on track with a plan. And as always, I'm grateful for each and every day! Spark on!
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