I know a guy whose name I will remain in confidence (a real person) who must have thought a full distance Ironman event must have been a pretty good idea.
So, he takes 2 weeks off work, drags his family to the other side of the continent to volunteer at an event. But, he didn’t just volunteer. He volunteered for the swim, bike, run portion as well as being a catcher at the finish line.
A year and a half later, he makes a confession to his family that he has signed up for a full distance Ironman event that is occurring in 6 months. Soon after that I suspect he heard some negative bashing if not laughter at his expense.
I thought to myself “he is 60. He has had almost 20 years off from doing athletic stuff. Has anartificial knee. No support group. Hmmmm.
I heard from his beloved supporting wife who I suspect did not tell him what she was thinking, but I heard “he has worked so hard. I fear for what will happen when he does not make the swim cutoff”
Silence through the training cycle.
Off they go to IM North Carolina.
We had a talk the night before the race and all I heard was optimism and positive confidence it was going to get done, but interlace with questions of concern about the mechanics of how the event will work. There was even disappointment the ride got shortened to 56 miles. (I would have viewed that as a blessing). He wanted to do the full 112 before the marathon.
After the race started I got a few texts about “I was in tears. I think I just sent him into harms way!”
Swim time 1:07. Ride about 3:20. Run less than 6 hours. Cross the line with a huge smile. He finished 24th of 150 finishers. 2 weeks later, sign up for another one.
So, It begs the question what is the difference between him with his impairments and he gets it done in style and those that don’t toe the line because “my leg hurts” After all, everybody knows you should not run with a prosthetic knee. If anybody had a reason not to do something, he did.
Attitude and determination based on choice.
A few random thoughts that I think may apply.
People are about as happy as they choose to be.
If it is to be, it’s up to me.
If he can do it, I can do it.
It ain’t bragging if you can prove it.
Thoughts plus action result in a feeling, and we attract our feelings to our life.
Don’t let anybody wreck your good time, especially you
You can do it!
Your attitude equals your altitude.
The race does not always go to the fastest, but to those who think they can
It’s your opinion that counts most
Certainly not everybody chooses to do a full distance event like that. But, we all have our challenges in life that may consume us on the same scale. One person’s challenge is not another's. Every body is different. However, there is a lot to be learned from and applied to our life based on the experience of others.