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The fine art of balance..

Monday, June 10, 2013

I guess I am just airing many of the thoughts swimming around in my head as a way to clear my mind. In short, my life is one ultra colossal conglomerate of disorganized confuzzlement.

Wow, that's a mouthful.

One thing that has stood out since my last conversation with my mentor and friend ACTIVE_AT_60, was the understanding that the greatest tool in the athletes tool box is a day planner. The fine art of balance between work, training, personal goals, and family. Currently, I am one of the most annoyingly crazy procrastinators on the planet and the scary part is that I never used to be that way.

Before starting at the mine, I used to be in (of all things) Information Systems, specifically computer and laser printer repair, computer networking, and server administration. Now I am very much a blue collar miner...dont ask... long story. I used to be married to a Daytimer, was OCD about goal setting and then methodically outlining how to get there and was extremely organized. I had to be, my career demanded it. Not so any more. i work shift work so I just got used to drifting from day to day doing what ever i felt like and mostly lacking structure. I mean why bother planning anything? The mine owns me and my schedule, I just live life in between the commercials right?

Well, not exactly.

I have really let myself get sloppy and it has been one of my biggest frustrations in my life is the lack of structure and time oriented discipline. As my race deadline approaches, my sense of urgency as well as the mental feeling of being overwhelmed has finally given birth to a resurgence in time management and the big payoff is the sense of control that I used to enjoy. I have a ways to go in disciplining myself but I will say that it is kinda amazing that I have actually managed to make some pretty big advancements in spite of my shiznit approach to managing myself.

One of the things I have been doing alot of lately is looking at life past the 70.3. There is a real sense of wanting to move forward with my life. Yes I want to savor the moment of crossing the finish line of this epic event but there is also a STRONG sense of urgency that cannot wait until all of this is over so I can totally focus on the most important health goal I have. That is to finish what I started and get my Personal Trainers certification and create the body I want. I want to get to goal weight and get on with my life. The day is coming where I will want to train for the most epic event of all, a full 140.6 mile triathlon be it an official Ironman event or another such as the Revolution3 series although the thought of Mike Reilly calling me out... "Robert, YOU...ARE....AN IRONMAN" has certainly made the hair on the back of my neck stand up from time to time....

None of that will happen if I do not get to goal...ever. Even if life does not allow me to go that route, I still want to finish this. I dont lose weight while racing, I lose weight when I am carefully eating, methodically focused, and not distracted. Racing or just going the distance does not allow for big caloric deficits and still have the energy needed to hammer out the mileage I need to in order to succeed.

In short, I want more than anything to get back to training for weight loss and not performance... big difference.

I have very little doubt i will do well in the race but the feeling is growing of wanting to bag racing after this event is over with and just dedicate myself to finishing this and build the body that I want. A body that has the potential to train for a 140.6. I am feeling like another 40 pounds will do the trick. By that point I would have lost a person (over 155 lbs total loss) but still be technically overweight but I dont care. 230 would be pretty epic and would be light enough for a clydesdale like me to have a shot at finishing an Iron distance event. I'm looking forward to starting the next phase.

Thats not to say I wont run a half marathon or two to test my fitness or have some fun, but there is a difference between that and the grind of training and the build up needed to simply finish something on a much grander scale.

ok I'm done rambling... I cleared my mind.

Now time to hop on the bike and then the treadmill..... I still have to get ready..... August 11th is not that far away....6 full weeks of training until I start tapering.... then the madness begins.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I read your comment about how race training does not help weight loss, and yes, you are likely to lose less because you are building those muscles which are denser than fat tissue. On the plus side, and to me a huge plus side, race training builds up healthy lungs, heart and muscle, keeps blood sugars in line, lowers blood pressure and many other healthy things. The number on the scale may be higher than what you are wanting to see, but if your health is improving because of what ever exercise you are doing, then celebrate those things and let the numbers fade into the background.
    1122 days ago
    balance is critical. All kinds of balance. I am having a very serious with physical balance and I am a definite fall risk. Makes life interesting.
    1122 days ago
  • v DRB13_1
    Go Ironman Go!
    1125 days ago
  • v KATHIC2
    Great blog and you will figure out your next adventure!
    1127 days ago
  • v CM_GARDNER78
    I'm with the guy below me...YOU...ARE...AN IRONMAN!!

    I have not known someone who sets their mind to something like you and makes it happen. Time to make this happen!!!! :-) (((HUGS)))
    1134 days ago
  • v JOE14250
    Robert, YOU...ARE....AN IRONMAN

    reread it again!
    1135 days ago
  • v GEORGE815
    Keep moving in a positive direction.
    1137 days ago
    emoticon emoticon
    1137 days ago
    I have not got an organized bone in my entire body! Wish I did, but does not happen... Oh well. Keep those goals in mind, and you will get there. And if the mine closes, you will end up doing what you really want to do. Now that is the way to live life!
    1137 days ago
    One thing I have learnt is that 'Due dates are closer than you think', I often feel I have lots of time to sort out my 'life' only to find the time has disappeared! Good luck for your training and diet, hopefully they will come together in time.
    1137 days ago
  • v 123ELAINE456
    Awesome Blog. Do what ever is best for You. Do what makes Robert happy.
    If You want to get back to losing weight after this Big Racing Event that You are training for now then plan on doing just that. That sounds Great. You are doing an Awesome Job. You Inspire Millions of People. Keep It Up. God Blessings to You and Everyone. Have a Delightful Day. Take Care. Hugs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    1137 days ago
    Yeah, balance is tricky.

    While I won't dispute the common wisdom that you can't lose weight while training for distance running, personal experience shows that you can lose weight while running shorter distances. I lost the last 10 or 15 pounds while running 3 or 4 days a week, 3 to 6 miles per run. Yeah, it's not half marathon territory; but it got me up to the 10K distance without stopping the weight loss.
    1138 days ago
  • v 4CYNDI
    Another great, timely blog. After focusing on this one event for so long, you are anxious to begin the next phase of your life. Hang on, you'll get there.
    1138 days ago
  • v LINDAKAY228
    Great blog! I problems with balance and procrastination often. I have to work at it a lot. It's good that you have goals in mind for after the race because too often after athletes finish something they trained a lot for they feel let down and not sure what to do once it's over. Having something to focus on after will help keep you in "balance" that way too. I have no doubt you'll do what you've set out to do.
    1138 days ago
    I am kinda in love with this blog. I think all us have this issue, of balance. When we switch focus, change our goals, strive for more, even change of diet we have to find a way to maintain balance, or for some re-find it.
    I see this a lot with Crossfit and women. They always wanted to lose weight and be 'skinny' and always looking for a small number on the scale.... but when Crossfitting as sport they often gain muscle, which as far as the scale is concerned is MORE WEIGHT, its a lot for the brain to handle a bigger number (even if its lean muscle) when we've been socially trained that a smaller number is better.
    I know when I started weight training I had that issue. I had to eat more, and much more change where my calories came from in order to gain muscle and be strong... but the scale read more and more, even though my clothes were falling off me, its mental.
    You recognize your goal and there IS a balance between that distance / endurance goal and the weight loss goal.... and YOU WILL FIND IT! You are already soooo ahead of the game by being able to step back and evaluate it in the way you have done here.... sounds like you are *UN-confuzzled* to me, that is BIG - really big! The gold is yours baby!! (-: Proud of you.
    1138 days ago
  • v JOE14250
    Keep up the good work! You are one of my role models!

    And YOU are a machine!
    1138 days ago
    Let me know if you need a chat I am totally with you on this one. This year has been my year to focus on the fitness and weight loss more than the racing it is paying off huge dividends in the race times and in the speed of recovery.
    1138 days ago
    Robert, I have no doubt you can do anything you set your mind to do!
    1138 days ago
    I think it's great that your goal planning is looking at short, medium, and long term goals - that alone takes a lot of organization, even if you're not feeling organized at all. With your kind of persistence, you're likely to reach them all. In the meantime, enjoy the various paths the road to takes you along the way.
    1138 days ago
    Evolving, ever evolving...that's what you're doing right now.

    Best of luck of the race. And the VERY best of success to you as you move even closer to your ultimate goals.
    1138 days ago
    Good luck!
    1138 days ago
    Confuzzlement -- I like that word. emoticon

    Excellent blog. Balance is something I need more of in my life. Very timely message. emoticon
    1138 days ago
    Robert - sometimes I find the path to the goal you initially chose will be modified by the choice we make while on the actual journey. I agree a planner is a great idea, actually what we all need - because sometimes making an appointment to exercise/train is the only way we would do it. Those planners must be flexible enough to allow you to grow and slightly change direction. You chose the path of doing the Ironman 70.3 now. There must be a reason, why now was important to you. You knew when you made the decision Weight loss and other things would have to be placed on the back burner just to simmer/rise so when it is over with they will be ready to be devoured by you and get you to your final goal. I have faith that you will do everything you want in the correct time. emoticon
    1138 days ago
    Great blog!!!

    You make a very good point that race training does not lend itself to weight loss. It seems to me that there are a lot of people out there that do not get that concept...

    I know that you will be a great personal trainer.

    1138 days ago
    It can be fun to use event like a 1/2 marathon as a training event rather than as a race you peak for. That way you can still run 1/2 marathons but not be throwing off your main goals of doing what needs to be done to lose weight.

    My husband has always worked shift work and handles it well. His schedule can throw me off if I let it and I'm not even working it. emoticon
    1139 days ago
    Very good!
    1139 days ago
    Balance in your life is a constant. I was going to say a constant struggle, and then I realized that it really isn't a struggle, it's just always there. I found years ago, that the easiest thing to do that gave me the time I needed in my day to day management, was also the hardest thing to say. It's one tiny word: No. I've learned over the years to use it judiciously, but it's been a valuable lesson learned. You have to pick and choose what to do, when to do it, with whom to do it with. I believe when you achieve a balance within yourself, you're actually able to do more.
    1139 days ago
    I completely agree. I found myself training so much that I was losing sight of what I really wanted in the first place. Also, time can make the races not seem so exciting and I wanted my weight to not be dependent on extreme activity. I like being balanced. I hear you say the same thing. Balance. Great blog and great insight...
    1139 days ago
    Sometimes we just have to rattle around. Here's a nice safe place to do so. Thanks for letting me listen in. My 2013 calendar has filled in, as anticipated. I'm still hoping to come watch you across that 70.3 finish line (hopefully my work craziness will still permit this)... and that's always been a big "fan girl" item in the mix.

    I love having a mix of goals... some "big", some that test my limits (like my double half Mary next September). Some social (like last Saturday) to be with kindred spirits. Some inspiring and supporting (like coming to see you do your Half Iron). Some mentoring (pacing my cousin's daughter in her first HM next November). And some just because (my "home" HM in May and my "home" baby tri in July).

    Hang in, rattle and Spark on! emoticon
    1139 days ago
  • v JUNEAU2010
    Whenever I am doing or going through something, I always approach it a little bit detached - watch, listen and learn so that I can perhaps keep someone else's learning curve shorter by sharing my experiences. Don't be in such a hurry to reach that finish line that you miss the life that happens on the way to it. You'll miss out on some real life training stories that you can share with your soon-to-be clients. Look at this period of your life as "free on the job training" for that glorious future.
    1139 days ago
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