July 1, 2009

I Feel Like I Have A Lot To Say

I am feeling a little bit long winded today and I have to be honest and tell you that I am not sure where this post is going to go. I have a lot on my mind and an empty page. Let's see where this takes us!

First things first, I realized that I have been slacking on posting my workouts. I don't want everyone to think I suddenly quit working out so let me give you a brief synopsis of what I have done so far this week.

Monday: AM - spin class, 30 minute easy run, upper body weights, core and stretching
PM - easy swim and physical therapy stuff

Tuesday: AM - speed work (6 x 800, 4 x 400), TONS of push ups, core and stretching
PM - physical therapy stuff

Wednesday: AM - 60 minute easy run, oblique workout and yoga w/ Jay
PM - 60 - 90 minute bike ride and physical therapy stuff (not finished yet)

So, that is where we are on the workouts. I am feeling exhausted this week due to lack of sleep and I don't want to push myself too hard or get injured. I have a really tough tempo run tomorrow morning but as of right now I am not really sure that I will be able to finish it. Cross your fingers for me.

For dinner last night we had one of my all time favorite meals...Tuna Steak! Yum! A friend of ours recently gave us some beautiful tuna from a fishing trip that her husband went on. He caught tons and tons of tuna and they were so kind to share with us.

We didn't really do anything fancy with the tuna. I put some lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, pepper and Bragg's on top of it and baked it in a 400 degree oven until it was just barely pink in the middle. On the side we had some roasted red potatoes and steamed brussell sprouts. This meal was absolutely delicious...even if I do say so myself!

I have been thinking a lot lately about the sacrifices I make to race each year and whether or not they are worth it. I absolutely love to race and feel strongly that it makes me a better person but I often feel guilty about the financial, emotional and physical toll it takes on me and H. I never in a million years would have thought that I would actually finish an Ironman and live to tell about it. I never dreamed that I would place in almost all of my races and inspire other people to train and race as well. However, I also never would have thought that I would spend more than $10,000 on a single race, suffer through countless injuries, alienate a good portion of my family and friends and try to survive on less than six hours of sleep each night in order to fit all of my training in. There is this inner conflict within my very being that wages a daily battle between pushing myself harder and taking a step back to reevaluate my priorities. It used to be such an easy decision because H and I did all of our training together and it was a way to spend time with each other. Unfortunately, that is just not the case any more due to circumstances beyond my control and it becomes harder and harder to justify spending hours and hours and hours training and tons and tons and tons of money on a "hobby". I know that I have not reached my full potential yet and I still have dreams and goals that I want to see come to fruition but at what cost? What will I have to give up in order to qualify for the Ironman World Championships? Is it worth it? I read something this morning on a blog over at Runnersworld.com and it totally resonated with the battle in my mind. This is taken from an article that Dean Karnazes wrote and it gave me even more to think about.

What constitutes a life worth living? Is it high achievement? What I’ve come to believe is that more than anything, it’s having the courage to try. Perhaps no one has stated this more eloquently than Theodore Roosevelt when he wrote:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”

May you strive for greatness, may you set your sights on the stars, but more than anything, may you always have the courage to try.

Any thoughts? I would love to hear what you guys think...and with that, I am off to work!


  1. I read that same article earlier this week. It really struck home with me for the more obvious tone of the article...The sadness and depression you feel when after so much training, the race goes wrong. I was amazed to see his humility for DNF'ing at Western States.

    I battle with this same issue, especially the injury side of it. I blew my knee out in 2007. If I was "normal" and didn't care about running long distances and racing, I probably could have settled with not repairing my MCL. Life would have been weird, but it would have been doable.

    Instead I chose to spend $75,000 on 2 reconstructive surgeries and 20 months worth of physical therapy. Luckily I have insurance. But my plan is a 90/10 plan, so I paid 10% of that bill. I'll let you do the math.

    When is enough enough? I get so much enjoyment out of running and training....but is it worth taking time away from my husband, my social life, my other hobbies. Or risk getting injured again?....

    Happiness Awaits

  2. This is something that I struggle with as well. It's usually when I'm in a rut or overtrained. Sometimes I feel like my body is so sore that I can't move and I ask myself if it's worth it. I'll usually ease back on my workouts to help my body recover or throw in an extra rest day. After that, I'm feeling good and back on track.
    At times I want to give up, but I love the way my healthy lifestyle makes me feel. My sister spends her money on clothes, drinks at clubs and fashion magazines. She has nothing to show for it except a hangover and bad self-esteem from staring at pictures of skinny models all day. I spend money on running shoes, a gym membership, a cool bike and healthy food. I have strength, confidence and that special feeling you get after achieving a set goal. I don't think you can put a price on those.
    It comes down to doing what makes YOU happy in YOUR life. Different strokes for different folks they say :)
    I'm sure this is just a rut your in right now and maybe all you need is to slow things down for a few days and recharge your batteries.

  3. Thank you for the insightful comments ladies. It is very encouraging to know that there are other people out there dealing with their own issues in regard to training and racing. In my mind I want to be like Chrissie Wellington or Deena Kastor and just spend my life training but unfortunately life requires that I work full time and do quite a few other things that I don't always feel like doing. : ) Anyway, thanks for the encouragment ladies. I really appreciate it!

  4. This is coming from a male athlete and i just wanna say you have already inspired individuals in your life already and thats worth more than all the money in the world! :) Congrats on being an Ironman by the way....that in itself is a big accomplishment and alot of dedication!

    Yours Truly,

  5. your a workout machine girlie!! sounds like you get great workouts!
    loving the huge bowl of brussels sprouts too :)

  6. Thank you for the kind words JBT.
    Peanut Butter Swirl...I'm trying! : )