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    BOILHAM   28,933
25,000-29,999 SparkPoints

Competing Against Myself

Monday, October 07, 2013

Sometimes I feel like I'm overworking.

A couple of years ago - I was wondering if I could ever finish a 5K. In my subconscious, I knew I could, but I was afraid of looking foolish or finishing last. I've learned a lot since then. Primarily, that it's not about winning or finishing at any given place. It's about self improvement. Meanwhile, I am doing things I never dreamed of doing by just signing up, and getting out there and doing. No matter that I am not always in the top so and so percent. I'm out there. Just showing up.

I decided to try a triathlon. The beginner level, a "my first Tri" which has a shorter swim length, only 1/4 mile and then a 12.4 mile cycle and 5k run. I did great, and surprised myself. I never would have done that if I had decided to stop competing once I finished my 1st marathon. That marathon was on my bucket list. So, I added a triathlon to the list once I completed the marathon.

I will continue endurance length races, but I thought I meet try something else, too. I'd see so many triathletes on SP, and thought "why not me?" I can certainly finish one. And I have. So, I've registered for another, a Sprint, and am looking forward to doing an Olympic distance in the not too distant future, too.

Meanwhile, I have learned. The cycling, which is not my most favorite exercise, is helping my endurance. Impact free endurance training. My quads burn a little after a sustained fast pace, that means muscle growth. My lungs are getting stronger from the swimming. I can now swim a mile with little rest between sets. Soon, I will swim a mile with no 'feet on the ground' resting. My shoulders burn, my triceps burn, I am gaining strength. All this with low impact exercise. Who knew that triathlon training would be such a good all around exercise routine? Not me. Not until I found that my spark friends were doing this, and that planted the seed of thought that I might do it as well.

I like to think about relativity regarding exercise. Your tolerance, or degree of self imposed success, is relative to your current condition, age, weight, strength and other factors. We all start from somewhere, and continue to grow from that point. But it takes a strong mindset and tenacity.

My skillset is unique to me, different from just about anyone. I train and compete from my own perspective. It's cool to win, yeah. But my bottom line is winning against my former self. If I thought I was going to come in last against others in a competition and decided to not compete for that reason, well, I would still be wondering if I could do that first 5K I was interested in, wouldn't I? Besides, you get better as you continue to train.

I've come a long way. I'm not sure where my training will take me. But it is taking me to a better place.

Thanks for reading and have a great day.

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
IFDEEVARUNS2 10/8/2013 12:12PM

    You've given me some things to think about! emoticon

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DAPHNE_RUNS 10/7/2013 11:56PM

    One of the things I love about Spark is seeing how other people are spending their time getting fit. Don't fall out of your chair laughing at me, but...I thought I was too old to pick up running again (this was a few years ago in my 30's). Runners, like yourself, has thrown that silly notion out of my head and made me realize I can do more. I run a tight schedule juggling running, shuttling the kids to school, therapy, Tae Kwon Do, and let's not forget volunteering at the kids' school as wheel as being on the PTA. I would not have the energy to get through my day without Spark.

Great job, Vic! I brag about you to my friends and now I have more to tell.

Keep moving.

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BIGPAWSUP 10/7/2013 9:48PM

    You have accomplished so much - I am always amazing and inspired by you.

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MNNICE 10/7/2013 8:25PM

    Wow, you've accomplished quite a bit, I'd say! Way to go!

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ROXYZMOM 10/7/2013 7:01PM

    I love reading your blogs! It's really awesome to be watching you grow in the sports arena. Thank you for sharing your journey!

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MWWENSIN 10/7/2013 5:49PM

    It is about beating ourselves and creating a better me. We all start somewhere and last beats did not compete or try.

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JACKIE542 10/7/2013 4:07PM

    Thank you for this I needed it, I did a virtual 5k, and I was thought I was a bit slow, and I know it was because I was looking at everyone times. I think I should do another and just pay attention to my own time, try and do better for myself!! emoticon

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DALID414 10/7/2013 3:51PM

I think part of what holds me back from signing up for events is that my time will be 'official'. I have to shake off this mindset and just do it!

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MASRITE 10/7/2013 3:31PM

    I just love reading what you're up to!! You are such an inspiration for everyone. So honored to call you my friend!

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MARGARITTM 10/7/2013 3:13PM

    My biggest competitot is ME too.

I ran a 1/2 yesterday and came in @ the same time as last year. - good grief!!!

But I am a year older so I guess it's all good about that blister on my foot!

Can't wait to see how you do on the next tri!

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NATPLUMMER 10/7/2013 12:32PM


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KIMPY225 10/7/2013 12:21PM

    Beating our own personal records is so great! Keep doing what you are doing & good luck reaching all of your goals!

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RJSAMS 10/7/2013 11:46AM

    What a great post, and you are so right! Improving yourself should be the goal. Nice job!

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NOTANINJA 10/7/2013 11:18AM


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