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Friday, March 13, 2009

Quick Update

Here's a quick update of what's going ...

Fighting off a cold

This had left me a little (lot) low on energy this week but I'm continuing to train through it. I feel better during a workout but the low energy is affecting motivation to get out the door. I'm feeling it more on the mental side than the physical! Why oh why do office workers feel compelled to come to work sick???? For some it takes a fever and chills to get them to go home and admit that they have the flu, meanwhile infecting the rest of the department! It's like a daycare for adults but instead of a busy parent forcing their sick kid to go to daycare (infecting the rest of the kids) these people force themselves to go to work and then spread their germs to the rest of us. Can you tell I'm fed up with it? A hazard of an occupation in the corporate world I suppose ... stuck in a world of grey fabric, artificial lights, white noise, tiny cells, I mean cubes - with germs waiting to pounce. At least the pay is good! The thing is that my family and I are RARELY sick, but I've noticed that the general sedentary public are very often afflicted with something. And so in order to get life done, they do it sick. Okay mean and biased rant over ... I don't like having a cold!

Spent some time here this week

Owens Field Track

Still on the fence

I'm still going back and forth, back and forth, back and forth in my mind about racing in the Open division this year. Here some pros and cons that are driving my internal debate:

Pros of Open division:
- Start race in wave 1
- Best rack in transition
- Know where you stand amongst your competition
- Race against the best athletes
- Can leave race site earlier (probably won't need to hang around for awards)
- Some prestige to racing here
- Will be proud that I stepped up to the challenge

Cons of Open division:
- Potentially look like a fool
- Less t-shirts, beer mugs, bottles of wine from Age Group winnings
- When the kids ask if I won, I'll have to say "No" most likely.
- Race against the best athletes

Pros of Age Group:
- More t-shirts, beer mugs, bottles of wine from Age Group winnings
- Get picture taken on podium (my kids don't know or care that it's not the overall podium)
- When asked by family how I did I can say, "I won my age group"

Cons of Age Group
- Will know that I backed away from the challenge of the Open division
- Weed your way through lots of swimmers and cyclists on the course
- No idea where you competition is amongst the 150 people that started in your wave.

Feedback welcome!!!


spokejunky said...

This is a motivation question. What motivates you to keep doing that which you love? If you do it for anything else, then you'll see yourself doing something else real soon. Guaranteed.

Carolina John said...

hang in there. these allergies too will pass.

and do you want to be the big fish in the small pond or the small fish in the big pond? i've always opted for the smaller pond, and currently am trying to revisit that theory. the bigger pond has its appeals.

Peloton Camden said...

So you don't get a podium this year racing Open. Big deal. Are you only racing for the t-shirts, mugs, etc or racing to see what your potential really is? The only way for you to get better is to race with people better than you. Life is too short to go through it wondering what if.

Anonymous said...

Hey Nick,
Just my two cents (which after taxes, inflation and the devaluation of the US dollar after borrowing another trillion is worth about two Mexican pesos)...

You are clearly a "tweener" like many other hardworking and talented athletes that also have a job/career/family/kids/house/responsibilities. You are at the top of the age group food chain but at the bottom end of the elite ranks (in beTWEEN)

I know a number of "true elites"; guys and gals that are working extremely hard to really find out what their athletic potential is and then how that stacks up against a peer group of individuals with similar current life goals.

But these "true elites" make the tradeoff of financial security, health care plans, houses, families, 401k's, a backyard, in lieu of naps/daily recovery requirements, and training time that is above and beyond that of "weekend elites."

So by climbing to the top of the age group field, you've already proven to yourself that you have the work ethic, dedication and determination required to be highly successful in a competitive demographic of other highly motivated, type-A, obsessive compulsive, financially stable overachievers (you have the T-shirts, beer mugs, trophies and podium pictures to prove it).

So that leaves you asking yourself the same question that all the "tweeners" ask themselves, "What is it that you really are seeking to prove to yourself (even if you have to prove something to others to prove it to yourself?)

If you are already training to your maximum workload, and you line up on race day and give 100%, then it's up to you to feel fulfilled by that or not.

One risk you didn't mention in racing elite is the internal stress that is placed on the individual to live up to new expectations (of others or yourself) which creates conflict between the pursuit of triathlon and your other life goals/responsibilities. How will you react if you feel you need to live a lifestyle that is more in line with a true elite (i.e. train and recover more) and that conflicts with your family, your job, your other life goals.

If you are ok with tilting more emphasis on racing, then you probably are uncovering your ultimate answer.