Wow, it’s been a long time since I wrote a blog – where to start? Life has certainly taken some twists and turns since last year at this time, presented some big challenges as well as opportunities. The title of this blog describes how I feel coming out of the past 8-12 months. Life is about experiences…some that are great and others that are just plan old hard that make you tough, make you learn about yourself and others, and teach you what is really important to you in life. In my opinion, the most important thing when you face adversity is that you stay true to who you are and what you believe in. My belief is that when things sort themselves out, good things happen to good people.
One year ago I made some big decisions related to business and my Chiropractic career. Understandably this came with a significant amount of stress that lasted for months. Negative stress is very harmful to the body and leads to problems sleeping and recovering, among other things. Last (triathlon) season started out as my best season ever – as the season progressed I got tired and with everything going on it was hard to maintain focus on the triathlete part of me. I kept myself together for the most part until the end of the triathlon season. Almost immediately after my last race, Ironman Chattanooga, I ended up with a hip injury, which became chronic, which I blame on lack of good sleep and corresponding chronic under-recovery. This pain hung around until a month ago when I did my first 20 minute run/walk “workout”.
There were many times in the past 6 months where I thought I may never run again at all, and certainly not at the level I was at and wanted to be at. It has been a game of finding ways to stay focussed, stay motivated, and making mini-goals along the way to give myself a fair chance of healing and getting back out there on the race course! Going through challenges like this makes you learn about yourself, your personality, and teach you how to work your way through challenges in other parts of life as well. Now that I’m here in April and able to build up running again pain free, I’m excited to have some racing goals coming up!
Life is about learning and experiencing and growing as a person as you go through each experience. Every time I have gone through an injury I come out with a new perspective on training and racing and my body. To me, bodies are amazing. I see it every day when I’m at work as a Chiropractor, Coach and Trainer. Recovering from injury is a constant reminder to respect it, listen to it, and give it what it needs in order to heal.
As a result of the above, my race calendar this season has changed significantly from what was originally planned out. Specifically, starting a little bit later and focussing on racing the Challenge series events. I’m excited to support this series and I believe they will do nothing but grow and expand around the world in the next few years. At this point the plan that Coach Tara has put together starts with Challenge Atlantic City full distance race at the end of June. It’s time to get things done!
QT2 pro camp was this past February. Talk about finding motivation! Once again the friends, team mates and training partners that I’ve found with QT2 played a big role in building motivation, appreciation and love for the sport again. I make it a habit to constantly remind myself that I’m lucky to be able to do this – to be a pro athlete while maintaining control of the other parts of my life that are important. I admit though that is very very hard sometimes to do this when you’re doing it on your own, when it seems like everyone around you is having fun staying up late, going out, sleeping in!! etcetera. Being part of this training camp and around all the other pro athletes and coaches at camp is so important to me – for the early season push, the strength and motivation I get from the other athletes there, and a fitness kick start at the time of year when it’s needed most. I’m thankful for the friends I’ve made who I get to sweat with, cry with, laugh with and just plain love life with!
Camp #2 this year was a camp in Tucson, AZ where I played the coach role for a group of athletes from Toronto. This is a camp that I ran together with others at my previous business which this year I did independently with another friend, coach and athlete from Toronto, Deirdre Casey. I love coaching athletes – helping people achieve things they never thought possible, and the relationships that are created in the process, there’s no better thing. This camp made me realize this more than ever. As much as I love being an athlete – I love helping other people excel! Our athletes did 5 days of swimming, cycling and running and achieved things they never thought possible. My favourite day was the day that they all rode up Mt. Lemmon – a 26 mile climb. Driving the car with the music blaring and camera on, cheering people on all day, making them smile and laugh when times got tough and getting them to just keep pedalling when they thought they couldn’t.. my favourite experience of camp. Deirdre and I are looking forward to next year – in AZ and perhaps a new destination, details to come!
On a more personal level, I’m looking forward to sharing everything in the days, months and years to come with a special person who has come into my life since my last blog. The title of this blog refers to all that I wrote about above, and also fits in here as well. Good things come to those who wait, and those who don’t just settle! It’s easy to settle for what is “okay”, that is convenient, that is “easy”. But every so often you see two people that have so much more than that – obviously in love and best friends. That’s what I’ve been waiting for. Just another reminder to never give up on anything in life!
Stay true to yourself and what you believe in, through all the twists and turns that life throws at you, and everything else will work out eventually.