When you have a lot going on with life, it is sometimes hard to know where to start things. The best piece of advice I’ve received for moments like this – the moments when things seem overwhelming – is to start at the beginning and tackle things little by little. So that’s how I’ll let you know what I’ve been up to in the last few weeks – at the beginning, little by little!
A Little Swimming
At the beginning of June I went on swim training camp with my club, Red Top Swim. The coaches at RTS plan a swim camp each May/June for their swimmers to get ready for the open water swim season ahead.
Initially DH and I signed up on this camp thinking it would be perfect timing for a race we both wanted to do – the 5k Defi Monte Cristo swim in Marseille. But wouldn’t you know it, DH got into the 5k swim and my entry was denied. So it was perfect training for him, and for me it was just for fun. And (of course) I wanted to see just how much I could stretch myself.
There are many things I could say about this camp. But for this post I will keep it to one thought and one number.
Over the course of a week I swam about 42 kilometers. The is way more than I have ever swum in a week, and possibly more than I usually swim in a month! (I can neither confirm or deny that piece of information!).
Which just goes to show, the body is capable of a lot more than we think it can do – if we ask it nicely and treat it well!
A Little News
Doing a huge swim camp didn’t really fit well in my race calendar this year – a year that I had chosen to focus on the sprint triathlon distance (which is just 750 meters of swimming) and when I decided to race in the open physically challenged division in the US. But my thinking went something like this:
“Who cares! It will be fun! And this year, my season is all about fun and no pressure!”
When an email about the start lists for Chicago and racing for Team USA came out in May, I thought:
“What the hell. I am going to be there anyway, why not submit my name?!”
So I put my name down. And thought that there would be little chance of being selected, and if I was selected, it would probably be the most mind blowing honour I would ever receive, being given the chance to race in Team USA colours…
On Wednesday last week I woke up to an email and a link to this…
My name. On the start list.
I have to admit this email thrilled me and humbled me. It made me more nervous than ever when I have thought about racing. And excited.
I am managing injury, still not really able to run properly and still mostly focused on rehab and strength, dropping many training sessions when my knee just doesn’t feel good. But the opportunity to race for Team USA… I think it is once in a lifetime for me. I feel deeply honoured to have the chance to do.
So I switched my registration from the open physically challenged wave to the elite paratriathlon wave in Chicago and – fingers crossed – I hope I will classify and meet the minimum impairment threshold so that I can race and represent. I will check my ego at the hotel and be prepared to be in awe of being amongst the best of the best in the world of paratriathlon, and I will sieze the opportunity to line up with some of my friends – athletes who I deeply admire, athletes I know who are simply amazing.
My heart is skipping beats from adrenaline rushes as I type this!
A Not-So-Little Puppy
I haven’t posted much about our puppy Felix on my blog recently. (But I am the crazy lady who set up a page for her dog on Facebook if you want to follow his antics there…) But what I will say is that having a puppy has transformed my life.
Felix is a funny little dog – he has taught me a lot.
He does not tolerate it when we check our phones when we are supposed to be playing with him. He demands 100% attention, 100% of the time.
He appreciates being outside and active and likes nothing more than running around at the park for hours. Just don’t forget to bring along a water bottle and bowl, as a hot puppy can get very very sick…
When he goes to sleep at night, he does a complete exhale of breath – like his last act of unwinding and relaxing for the night. And you know what – a big deep exhale is the PERFECT way to settle in and relax into sleep.
When he wakes up in the morning he likes a nice stretch and prefers to go walking straight away – a little activity to get started for the day. Sounds like a good idea, right?!
There is more, but rather than bore you, I will leave you with a puppy photo and one parting thought – there are very few things that we have in life that give us simple pure joy. The trick is to recognise them, and then to maximise them in our lives.
Swimming, triathlon, puppy… All a big part of what has maximised my joy in the last few weeks!