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What Now?

20 September 2017

There is always a swale of emotion after a huge goal race. Especially, in my experience, a new race. Whether it’s a new distance, a harder course, new sport, or whatever. I felt it after the Pittsburgh half marathon, after the Marine Corps marathon, after my first Olympic triathlon, and now I’m starting to feel it after the half-Ironman. You work so hard for so long to achieve something you never thought you could, and then you do it. And then it’s over.

I have a few races planned. But I don’t have any specific goals. I’m signed up for a Spartan Race in about three weeks. And a 5km charity race. And BB and I intend to run the Philly half-marathon again. But for me, I don’t really have any intention for those races other than to run them and have fun. The Spartan Race is new, but it’s a novelty. Obstacle course races seem interesting and fun, but I’m not sure they’re in my wheelhouse from a “lifetime goal” perspective.

In some ways, I feel like I can quit a part-time job. I’ve been training about 10 hours a week for more than 9 months. Long runs. Long rides. Long swims. Speed work. Gym work. I still don’t look like Brad Pitt in Fight Club. Yes I somehow imagined that would happen. Yes I’m disappointed it didn’t. No I never thought it was a realistic outcome. But I’m pretty obviously in the best shape of my life.

Right now I’m fit, strong, and as capable as I’ve ever been. Not bad for a 43 year old man with my history of abusing my body. I need to rest but I don’t want to lose it. I’m definitely taking time off from long endurance runs and rides. But not too much. I have a half marathon in two months, and I’ll be ready for it. Even if my goal is simply to get to the end and collect a new medal.

My life is possibly going to be changing significantly. I’m starting to look for a new position, as things at MECMC feel like they’ve plateaued. I’m seeking. I always want new challenges. New opportunities. I don’t like sitting still for long. It’s not the right way for me. Routine can be good, but stagnancy is not. I need to keep growing.

One Comment leave one →
  1. 25 September 2017 15:15

    Congratulations on your first half-ironman! That is quite an accomplishment. I wish I could share your experience more than vicariously, but the swimming component of the event has my afraid. Swimming any distance in open water is admirable.
    I too have become more active and less abusive with age. Recently a back injury has me slowed down substantially. I totally agree with you on stillness. Routine with thought yields consistent training. Agree there too.
    Good luck with your next serious event.

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