I was at a social event a few weeks ago with many different levels of athletic ability ranging from none (0.0 stickers on the back window) to 140.6 Ironman athletes.
It was very interesting to be a part of the conversations. Some were really into the game siting all the statistics of their training and accomplishments, and rightly so. They worked really hard and brag because bragging is not boastful If you can prove it.
There were those that have not done much racing recently, and were almost just the same siting all the reasons for the choices they made. They also were proud of their choices and rightly so. Not everybody enjoys the same thing.
I have seen both sides of the fence. Long distances and short. Fast times that impressed even myself and those that have made me walk around depressed for days. There are times when I worked really hard and other times I did not care too. And, I have also quit like Forrest Gump.
Mondays when people ask “Hey, how was your weekend?” If I started talking race results, it was often met with a change of subject to what they wanted to talk about. “I ran a marathon in @@:$*”. After some of the usual responses like “how long was that marathon?” Many times I saw the deer in the headlights look. I realized most don’t know or care. People are primarily concern about good ol #1.
Probably nobody cares about your race times except for you.
So then, why would we do the stuff we do if we get no credit or validation from others?
Because it is fun in a sick way. If is not fun and you don’t enjoy it? Why do it?
There are people who constantly complain about running in the cold rain. I don’t like it either but complaining about it out loud dampens the moment for everyone. Why not just shut up about it and go to hot yoga?
Once I rode my bike 200 miles in cold rain. It was miserable. When I removed my socks that day, my toe nails were attached to my socks. I asked myself why, and could not find a good enough answer. The result was taking several years off riding my road bike and doing other things. What was the result of that? Sooner or later I climbed back on my road bike and fell in love with it in a way I had not before, and my times were faster!
So, do you like doing what you do? Great! Continue and ask yourself what can you do to do it better and enjoy it more. Do you not like what you do? What would have to change to make it fun?
Nothing painful last forever.
But, whatever you do do, celebrate it. Standing on the podium is awesome! Going for a walk at dawn with your dog and loved ones and see the most awesome sunrise? Revel in that moment, because it will never return again.