|Quick break to enjoy the view on the ride|
|Gina, Freebird, Coug, and "Hippy"|
|KoKo relaxing at the Brew Pub after the ride|
I am dependent on my friends and my training partners, and I have a voracious need for variety in my exercise regime in order to maintain my focus and interest on it. When I lose any of those elements, I lose a fraction of my desire to stay in the fight to maintain my fitness. I realize that from a true athlete's viewpoint my dependence on those external factors makes me "mentally weak". In some ways I care about being perceived this way, but in other ways I don't. I do want to be a stronger athlete and be able to succeed on my own, and to know that I can persevere without being reliant on those around me. But I also know who I am, and what drives me, and in general... why I am doing this.
|Coug and Hippy|
|ME and Here|
Focused exercise and training is important. Training independently is important. Being able to persevere and be self-sufficient is important. But honestly, do I really care if I drop 30 seconds off my run pace? Well, yes... it makes all the hard work worthwhile when I see positive improvements, but ultimately what is having more of an impact on my overall life ~ a 30 second improvement in my speed, or the training experiences and friendships that I have made along the way? I know that it can't always be just about having fun and that there will always be those long training days where I can't find anyone to work out with and I have to tough it through by myself. Those days are gratifying too because I always learn something about myself and how far I can push before I quit. But as an adult, this training has become a form of play for me, and play is always fun. Lose the fun and it is no longer play, it is called work. I work 40 hours during the week. I work at home raising kids. I work around the house. I work to keep my van running. I just really really want to play now.
Who wants to come play with me?