Race day: Go for maximum enjoyment

Saturday is race day and my first open water triathlon of the season at A Tri in the Buff. So let’s break it down by the numbers:

  • Number of open water swims to date: 2 (although one was merely a 25-meter bob in dead-fish-infested waters).
  • Number of bricks completed: 2 (including the Pittsford Triathlon race).
  • Number of chocolate chip cookies consumed: 1 (But it was big)
  • Amount of soreness in my legs and rear end from this week’s training: 32 (On a scale of 1-10)

There is the possibility of some windy and stormy weather at Evangola State Park tomorrow which could mean a bumpy swim with waves. Not my favorite swimming conditions. And my legs, while not in any pain, are definitely heavy from travel, training and a torturous strength session with Maureen. Not exactly an ideal way to enter a race. But what is my goal? It’s pretty simple actually: To challenge myself to get out of my comfort zone with a consistent hard effort and to go for maximum enjoyment. Sometimes, it feels contradictory to put “challenge” and “fun” in the same sentence, but when I stretch the boundaries of what’s comfortable for me, when I push just a little bit more, I discover that I’m pretty amazed and impressed with what I can accomplish, with how I can feel about myself. Doesn’t matter what the clock says or where I finish in my age group. Those are nice numbers to play with, to give some shape to the amorphous goal of stepping outside my comfort zone. But in the end, it’s about me, feeling spent and happy.

I borrowed the phrase “maximum enjoyment” from my friend Carolyn along with the following, which is part poem part affirmation. Sometimes, I need to remember that each day is a new opportunity to live with passion, purpose and play. And that nothing in my life is mutually exclusive. Live and love on:

Today is the beginning of my new life.
I’m starting over today.
All good things are coming to me today.
I am grateful to be alive.
I see beauty all around me.
I live with passion and purpose.
I take time to laugh and play every day.
I am awake, energized and alive.
I focus on all good things in life.
And give thanks for them.
I’m at peace and one with everything.
I feel the love, the joy, the abundance.
I am free to be myself.
I am magnificence in human form.
I am the perfection of life.
I am grateful to be……
Today is the best day of my life.

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