August 1 is the date of this year's Tri for the Cure, a women's triathlon that benefits the Susan G. Komen breast cancer foundation. This will be my third year joining the race, and I hope to do it every year until my body is kaput.
I started "training" on Thursday, which meant I dusted off my running garb and turned the treadmill on. While that alone would have made for a successful training day for me, I did take it a step further and ran a mile or so (I use that word very loosely!) and did some strength training as well.
On the weekends while the kids are with their dad, I usually get home from work and turn into a complete vegetable. I peel off my uniform and pour myself into the laziest, softest, most stretchy jammie pants I can find, and slip into a t-shirt. With my feet propped up on the coffee table, I lose myself in the mindlessness of the internet, or the TV, or just the quiet. Either way, I stop moving.
With all the effort I could possibly muster, both Friday and Saturday nights when I arrived home from work, I immediately put on the running garb and walked down to the apartment complex's fitness center. I pushed myself as hard as I could each time and gave myself a proud pat on the back as I stretched afterward.
Tonight, since I have the kids and they have school tomorrow, I didn't hit the gym; however, I will be ready to squeeze something in between school drop-off and getting ready for work. A little of something is definitely better than a lot of nothing, so as long as I can keep myself moving every day, I'm good.
I'll never try to hide the fact that I'm very good at beginning new challenges and very good at never finishing them. I love the excitement of a new workout program, or a new painting project, or blog idea, or whatever. Unfortunately that high, that energized excitement of believing in myself once again, loses its power and the challenge quickly becomes a dragging burden. I haven't quite figured out why I can't keep the ball rolling after it loses steam, but it's a personal flaw I've been struggling with all my life and it frustrates the hell out of me.
So back to the triathlon - I like to do this race because I know that no matter how much or how little I train, I will still finish the race. The amount of pain I endure will be the ultimate test of how well I trained. The beginning is when it's fun, when I am the Little Engine that Could, repeating over and over, "I think I can I think I can..."
I will have to dig deeper and pull harder than I ever have before if I'm going to succeed at adequately finishing the training leading up to the race. I want to do well, I want to do better than the previous years. I don't care how I rank over all, or who does better or worse than I do. I just want to finish with the pride of knowing that finish came from months of the most dedicated sweat, tears, and hard-ass work I've ever done.