Sunday, December 29, 2013

How Did I Get Here? 2013 in Review

This was me in March of this past year.  Beer in hand, having just jogged/walked the St. Patrick's Day 5K in 35+ minutes.  On a dead flat course.  Followed up immediately by chugging two beers and having the brilliant idea to buy my kids a plastic toy trombone thing that deeply annoys us (and certainly the neighbors) no end.

Now admittedly, that race was a blast because I was there with two awesome friends, BUT I've come a long way since.  I've read innumerable blog posts from other athletes summing up their years, so in the interest of not making mine just one more, I'll try to keep it brief.  By the numbers:

  • 6 5K races.  That includes 2 color/glow runs and a Warrior Dash
  • 2 10K races
  • 3 sprint triathlons
  • 150+ miles of charity bike rides
  • 3 rides up and down Mt. Wachusett
  • 4-5 open water swims across a substantial lake and back, during none of which did I drown
  • 764 miles logged total, according to my various compulsive tracking programs.  That's combined sneakers, wheels, and swim.
  • 12 pounds lost
  • 5 weeks in a walking boot on crutches
  • 1 coach obtained
I love numbers just as much as the next endurance athlete, but the most important moments of 2013 are those that can't be quantified.

Like becoming a triathlete on the same day as my kids.

And teaching them to love being active as much as I do.

Like getting spectacularly messy with friends.

And meeting some of the most amazing women I know.

Also defying the number are how many fears I've conquered, and how much I've learned - not just about the sport and being active, but about myself.
  • I am no longer afraid of falling off of the back of treadmills (though maybe I should be).
  • I know the difference between a spin bike and a regular exercise bike.
  • I learned how to swim (kinda....)
  • I learned how to put on a wetsuit.  Even more impressive, how to get one off.
  • I learned how to change my own bike tire.

  • I learned how to shower at work and wear spandex in front of whatever coworkers happen to see me running near the building without being embarrassed.
  • I learned how to sleep in workout clothes in order to get up and out the door just that much faster for a 5:45 a.m. strength class.
  • I learned I push myself too hard.  In all things.
  • I learned just how important it is to have Date Night.
  • I learned that many people will not understand, and not be supportive.  You lose friends.  But you also gain friends, and those that stick with you and cheer you on are worth a dozen of the ones who drift away.
  • I learned that a really good workout is better therapy than a really good beer.  And that when you can't have one all of a sudden, the beer doesn't really help either.
  • I learned am learning moderation.  And humility.  And hopefully to let things go and let someone else drive for a while (that's the coaching part.  Eventually I imagine he'll stop letting me schedule my own workouts).
  • I even learned that I'm not actually afraid of things I thought I was.  Like rock climbing...
next up... dinosaurs (maybe)

So yeah, 2013 was a heck of a year.  Add in our oldest starting school, our first year doing wedding cakes, and the day to day business of sick kids, ER visits, work, promotions, bills, homework, and forgetting to buy cat food and I'm somewhat amazed I'm still standing.  I don't believe in New Year's Resolutions specifically, but I do have some ideas for what I want to work on next in this journey on mine.  

More on that soon...

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