|Smelling the Roses|
It took me a long time and most of the world to learn what I know about love and fate and the choices we make, but the heart of it came to me in an instant, while I was chained to a wall and being tortured. I realized, somehow, through the screaming in my mind, that even in that shackled, bloody helplessness, I was still free: free to hate the men who were torturing me, or to forgive them. It doesn't sound like much, I know. But in the flinch and bite of the chain, when its all you have got, that freedom is a universe of possibility. And the choice you make, between hating and forgiving,can become the story of your life."
The opening lines to my holiday read , Shantaram ( Man of God's peace) by Gregory David Roberts.
(A quote I took from the book ,Shantaram and referred to in my blog on this day back in 2010)
Beyond Kona which was the whole purpose of or at least the start of this Blog on triathlons , training , what next .Well after a bit of recovery it was on to finishing IMWA 2016 my 10th Ironman at Busselton .
This blog is more a brief summary of that race and an overview of the year of racing and the lessons I think I have come away with .No overwhelming truths and no real Eureka moments .
The IMWA was a lesson in how the mind is fundamentally critical in any endeavour .The desire to race was waining but having signed up last year as a requirement for the legacy programme I decided to atleast start and finish .No objectives other than hoping that I would be able to finish in a half decent time .I had a surprisingly good swim despite the lack of keeping up with the training .A 1.25 hr and on par with my swim at Kona with a wetsuit so I had lost a bit of speed .The ride was slowest ever and again my legs just did not work and then translated into a very slow run .No major issues with my nutrition although I struggled with the choices on the run and did not quite like the Endura on the aid stations but I did not carry any Tailwind for the run this year .
Something I will need to consider in future .I finished just under 14hrs and glad I did finish but it was by far ,keeping with the slow times this year , reflective of the dysfunctional way I trained and lacked the focus.. it is time now to recharge and really have a break and rebuild .Life is about accepting that nothing really runs to plan but also trying to learn from these experiences to be better in the future.The hardest skill in this day is the overwhelming amount of information at our disposal and what to take on board and what to ignore.Life is more complicated for that when it is necessary to de-clutter ones training and refocus on what is important.
What the year has taught me is more easily discernible in a not so great year results wise but overwhelminly I take the positives in everything I have experienced .Our lives by the nature of the world and the speed in which information and knowledge (both good and bad and true and untrue ) circulate in this 24 hour cycle of the Internet /electronic media world means that we have to be so much more diligent in cutting true the rubbish and being so much more disciplined.
|Irondog with her Kona Finishers m|
From my perspective only .What I learnt is both applicable to life as a triathlete and life in general .It is my take on all the lessons I have had to learn and will continue to learn .
1 Be Kind most of all to yourself. Life is far too short and at times hard , to punish yourself when things don't go to plan .Not an excuse for mediocrity but realism.If anything be kind because it is good for the soul and if you believe in karma it surely is the right thing to do for yourself and all around.
2 Focus and Desire are critical in making any goal work.Sometimes the hardest thing is taking a step back or accepting that life's desires change . The lack of desire and that inner strength to persevere is what makes the difference between a well executed plan and just going through the plan.
|Terrence Bozzone ,me and Craig Alexander ,Kona 2016|
3 Have a Plan and keep to it.Sticking to it means closing out all unnecessary information and opinions which is harder than you think in this Internet world. lots of great coaches and triathletes to follow but ultimately settle on one and stick with it .
4 following from 3 , once you have a plan then be consistent .Another hard one.My biggest failing this year has been the lack of consistency .
5 Sleep more.
6 Eat well and spend as much attention on food and recovery as you would on training . Everyone is different and don't ever diet .In anything a balance measured nutrition plan is always going to be the way to go.The Paleo diet I had at the beginning of the year wasn't really Paleo as I still had about 25percent of my food intake broadly as carbohydrates and I wasn't religious in my nutrition.
The low carb high fat diet
7 Play with your dog .Get a pet.It keeps the Heart rate low. if anything else you learn that there are more important things in life than swim,bike and run.
|Underpants run Kona 2016 Having Fun|
8 Sometimes just learning to breathe and shutting out the world is a good thing .Meditate .very hard in this frenetic hypoglycemic world.
The list is not a complete panacea for everything ,stress is a real part of life and there is stress I can control and stress that I can't . Just roll with the punches . Heres hoping for a more productive 2017 but everyday Iam just thankful for being able to swim bike run and play with my dog.