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The main thing

Putting the work in

I read a fantastic article this morning from beginnertriathlete.com, called The Main Thing, is to Keep the Main Thing, the Main Thing…  Amazing!  This hit home with me perfectly.  Seriously folks – anyone who’s taking up a new sport, or a new hobby, or wants something to distract them from work: give it a read!

The past two nights I’ve made it out for a full length run, even a few 100m beyond my goal length, at the desired pace.  The day before I put in my brick.  3 consecutive days!  No excuses about schedules, or weather, or equipment.  No excuses of hurt body parts or intended other future activities led me to cut my run short or slow.  3 consecutive days of hitting my goal head on.  Shit that feels good.

It feels good to stop worrying about optimal training.  “Am I doing enough drills?”, or “Am I taking in the right calories?” Just get out there and do it.

I heard a quote from one of my favorite Canadian triathletes – Simon Whitfield – earlier this week (props to the Olympics for providing a tonne of interesting sound bytes… more on that in a later post):

The race isn’t won under the lights.  It’s won in the gym; in the dark; in the rain

Or, in other words: Get your shit out the door and swim, bike, or run.  Or whatever your thing is: Do it.  Put the miles into your legs.  Nobody wins the race by studying training plans more than their opponent.  Nobody wins the race by having the flashiest gear.  You win the race by working hard – not on race day, but every day.  It’s the struggles and sacrifices you make in the days/weeks/months/years leading up to the race that win, and it starts by getting out the door.

Of course, some of us don’t train to “win” the race.  We train for a Personal Best – to meet a goal – and sometimes just to say we finished.   From the article linked above:

To complete an Ironman triathlon distance you must finish in less than 17 hours.  Do you know what they call a person that takes 16 hours, 59 minutes and 59 seconds in the world of Ironman triathlon?  “An Ironman”

Just get out there and do it.  In this sport, as an amateur athlete, you win by crossing the finish line.  You win with a Personal Best.  And you do that by putting in the work – in the gym, in the dark, and in the rain.  Swim.  Bike.  Run.

Sitting on the couch reading about it doesn’t count!

So far this week has been fantastic.  A good Brick on Sunday, and two great runs the past two nights.  Tonight is a scheduled rest day, followed by a long swim on Thursday, another Brick on Friday, and a bike ride on Saturday.  Swim.  Bike.  Run.  Keep the Main Thing, the Main Thing.

Bring that shit on!


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