April 14, 2016 – 100 days until IM Lake Placid. Many athletes competing in this race react to this declaration with thoughts such as “100 days?! I’ll never be ready!” On the flip side, my reaction is “100 days? Can I survive this training for that long?” 100 days. The questions start to invade my brain. The questions of why – why am I doing this? And is this worth it? Is this journey worth the sacrifices? During the winter and early spring months, I embraced the workouts. I welcomed and looked forward to them – each and every one. I could train for a couple of hours while the kids were asleep or take at most an hour or two out of the day while they spent some QT with dad. I would get a quick break, get my workouts in and get back to the kids without feeling like I missed a beat. The training didn’t interfere with my life.
Just a couple of weeks ago, I was having a conversation with my mom about my ironman training. I expressed concern with regards to how I would be able to fit it all in with teaching, coaching, the kids, and the rest of life’s challenges. She asked me “well, how much do you really have to do?” I paused for a minute to ponder this question. How much do I have to do? Well, I don’t necessarily have to do any of it. It’s more a question of how much I think I should be doing to accomplish the goals that I have set out for myself.
If only there were a book that provided the answers to questions such as these. If I want to accomplish x, I need to do y and z. Period. Done. A magic formula revealed. It could work for anything. You set a goal. You look up the formula in the book. You follow the plan. You reach your goal. Life would be so much easier if that was the case.