Thursday, March 9, 2017

An embarrassing legacy

Post Race chuckles at Active Tri in Brighton 2016 always my first event of the year,
and the water is always cold & choppy 

Having a child gets your brain over thinking, you certainly start to worry more, you turn concern about nothing into something. You lock the door twice at night, you check on them when they stir and if they are awake and not making noise you wonder why. You try to avoid risks, you try to be more organised and you sacrifice so your child can do more or have more, maybe you cancel that night at the pub because you didn't read to them the night before, or you hold back on the 100km bike ride instead to spend 4 hrs with them down the beach on a less than ideal day because you promised them.

You can't be with them every waking moment, and that's why it sucks when you drop them at day-care, or leave them an in-law as you ride off to work, or traffic is bad on the way home and you miss putting them to bed, and I guess at some point you question your on immortality. It's a heavy thing to think of, I'm not a thinker of death everyday sort of guy (that is no way to live) but what if? and when if? 

Stephen Covey of 7 Habits of Successful People book fame famous line:

Begin with the end in mind

That famous self help role play of pretending you're at your own funeral and imagine what people would say about you, it's a pretty heavy and self involved thing to think about. We have all sadly attended the funeral of someone at some point and the truth is it's not nice to hear any of it. Z-Girl has got me thinking about it more and more, what is my legacy going to be.

I had the unfortunate circumstance of being knocked off my bike and suffering what can only be described now as a small inconvenience of an injury; two cracked vertebra in my lower back (L4, L3) and a the tendons of my shoulder busted up a fair bit. At the moment the car turned into me I had no life flashing before my eyes moment, no chance to think about my wife or kid, friends or family; it just struck me and I yelled out 'F#$K' (censored encase Z-Girl reads this) And then I spent 6 weeks in a world of pain, frustration and regret.

That injury gave me one thing I haven't had the past 3 years, time.

Time to think, time to pause & time to work out where I really am at 35 years old. I'm no longer an athlete, and any of my athleticism I did have I think got robbed that morning between the curb and the wing mirror. I'm not going to Kona, its a nice idea when you start Ironman races and its talked about a lot everyone knows someone who has gone or is going to Kona; at 5hrs 20min I'm no threat to the Hawaii Island. I will most likely never ever win a race of any kind ever again in my life time (last time I think was in high school swim sports) So why with all this mind have I entered triathlons at all, and why did I let the convincing of a good friend make me sign up to a Cycling Club for purpose of racing my bike?

It’s the vibe, and…no that’s it…it’s the vibe. I rest my case. - Dennis Denuto (The Castle, Movie)

That's really it. I just like the vibe of it all. Appreciating the effort of the Professionals, the Top Ranked Amateurs. I like the steak dinner & beer after the race, waving at my wife and child on the run leg, the hugs afterwards, the funny stories of things I've forgotten. The effort needed, and dedication to stay fit and be ready for the event. The finishers medal, and sometimes just the free massage & sports drink at the end. I like the smile my wife gives me after the race & I like riding my bike fast even if it's not as fast as the next guy, and I enjoy the occasional PB in training, or finding a new running route on my local trails.

The race really is just the excuse I give my brain to wake up early and suck in the morning air.

My wife when our daughter was born created a email address, and she wrote to her in the early months about things she had achieved and when she is 18 she will look back on it and smile at the things we loved the most about her when she was little. Its amazing how those things start to fade.

I've reopened this blog after almost a year in hibernation as to be exactly that. A place that Z-Girl can turn to and laugh, giggle or smile at her Dads obsession with moving constantly, maybe it inspires her to move, and maybe she wins a race one day or she looks at me, and in that classic teenage tone and just tells me.

''Dad you're so embarrassing''

And I'll take that as a small victory among the many honourable losses.

Off the back of the above I'm going to attempt some weekly journal style entries, maybe on a Sunday evening as a decompression of my week, less training advice as essentially I'm 'training' less and 'moving' more. Will try and get up a few my monthly events schedule. Glad you read this one, no feel compelled to read the rest.

No comments:

Post a Comment