Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Commitment unlocks the doors of imagination, allows vision, and gives us the "right stuff" to turn our dreams into reality.” - James Womack

Auld Lang Syne has been running through my head for the past couple of days.

Yes, I realize that it's not officially time to celebrate the end of one year and the beginning of the next, but between transition week, the summer solstice, the time for reflection that vacation has offered, and the beginning of my half-iron training program, it sure feels like it to me. So in that new year spirit, I'm reflecting on my 2008 training thus far and recommiting to my goals for the year.
First, the reflection. Here's what I sent to my coach when she asked me to think about the last several months:
In short, I'm very happy -- with my training, my physical and mental progress, and the balanced way in which I've been integrating training and racing into my life this year. I have a deeper appreciation for how progress works -- it's slow, it's baby-steps (forward and backward), it's not always linear, then it's a breakthrough, then it's slow, then it's baby-steps.... Perhaps most importantly, I'm having a lot of fun!

This made me smile:
I dug into the email vault and pulled out this message I sent to Ray after the Endurance Challenge Tri in 2006. Taking place 2 weeks after my first tri ever, this was my 2nd multisport event: The distances were 500m swim (pool), 16mi bike (on my old mountain bike), 3.1 mi run
Email to Ray:
Swim 13:24
T1 1:05
Bike 1:05:16
T2 0:46
Run 35:40 (What! I haven't run 3 miles that slow in a LONG, LONG time)
Age Group 17 out of 18
Overall Women 137 out of 154
Well, if nothing else, I was happy to meet my goals (finishing under 2 hours, not crying and not throwing up) and feel like I have a good starting point to build on for next year:)

Feels pretty great to realize that a tough 5K two years ago was 35 minutes and a tough 5K last weekend was 28!
And now, the recommitment.
When I step up to the start line in November, I want to know that I have done everything I could to reach my goals.
First, I'm recommitting to the work I need to do on fundraising front. I'm over half-way to raising $7,300 to support the programs and services Genesis Home provides for families moving out of homelessness and into independence. As we all face the current realities of higher fuel and food prices, organizations like Genesis Home often see decreases in charitable donations at the time when they need them most.
Over the next few weeks, I'll be re-contacting folks who have previously expressed interest in Tri to End Homelessness and working on expanding our circle.
I hope that you'll help by:
- Making a donation directly to Genesis Home
- Asking your employer to become a sponsor
- Shopping at the Tri to End Homelessness store
- Passing this blog address on at least 5 other people and asking them to learn more.
Second, I'm recommitting to giving my all during each workout. I want to wake up each day and be grateful for my body; for the opportunity to singularly focus on me when I'm on the bike, in the pool, and on the run; for the support I'm receiving from my family, my friends, and my coach. I want my training - even on the tough days- to be an expression of that gratitude.
Giving my all during these next four months of training means committing to spending more time this summer swimming in open water, welcoming the track sessions I know await, and seeking out new ways to work on my overall strength. It's saying I LOVE CORE / HILL / FORCE WORK! - instead of dreaming up creative excuses for skipping /shortening / adapting it.
Third, I'm recommitting to the nutrition and sleep needs that this type of training requires in order to produce results. It's a waste of the time my training takes from other aspects of my life and the support that others are providing, if I don't supplement all those yards and miles with the right fuel and sleep. Saying yes to early bedtimes only makes the early alarm clock easier to heed. Saying yes to whole, colorful, balanced food and the time it takes to prepare it - and no to the second helping of dessert or wine or chewy, chocolatey goodness sitting on the receptionist's desk in my office -- will only help me come November 1.
Fourth, I'm recommitting to mental preparation. The more yoga I practice, the more intentionally I focus on my breath, the more time I spend sitting quietly and watching my thoughts pass by, the better prepared I am for my races - and more importantly, my life. Over the next four months, I will carve out time each day - even if it's only when I'm sitting in the car waiting for the light to change - for meditation.
Those are my process goals for the remainder of my 2008 season. Yes, I have some time goals too for each of my upcoming races - and perhaps I'll share those in the weeks and months ahead -- but for now, I'm recommitting to the inputs and having faith in whatever outcomes those produce.