Know Your Why
Do you ever find yourself forgetting why you set your alarm for 4:30am to wake up and get your training done?
Forgetting why you drag yourself to the pool to swim endless laps? Why you go through the monotonous ritual of getting yourself ready for a ride? Putting on all the gear, filling up the water bottles, pumping up the tires, lubing up the chain, grabbing your cycling helmet, gloves and gels, fixing something that is loose, and finally getting out the door 20 minutes later?
Do you ever wonder as you are running why you are doing that instead of watching your favourite show on TV?
If you have, better yet, if you are in that place right now, keep reading.
What is at the core of any great passion – the meaning behind it? The sense of excitement it gives you. The sense of purpose it fills you with. The great satisfaction you feel when you take one step closer towards achieving that goal you have set for yourself. The excitement is undeniable. You could talk about it all day. You want to share with anyone who will listen, how that last hard session made you feel. The adventure you had. What you learned. What you did great. What made you suffer. How you got through it, and how that filled you with an amazing sense of joy and pride.
When I say meaning, I mean the purpose behind this goal you have set for yourself. The WHY behind your desire to train, and race in this sport of triathlon. Are you taking on this sport as a replacement for some bad habit that had held you back in your life? A drug addiction? An alcohol problem? Anxiety issues? The sport is your way of putting all that energy that once went into drinking, drugging, or worrying, into something beneficial to your mind, body and soul.
Are you using triathlon as a vehicle through which to find yourself? To find out what you are really made of, to find the confidence to step forward and up, in other areas of life where you were lacking the self-esteem to do so.
Are you doing triathlon to form friendships, or relationships that are based on a mutual passion for this great sport? Triathlon is a social outlet, a place to build connections and thrive socially.
Or, did you take up the sport to improve your health? To lose weight, or drop your blood pressure, or to just know that you are participating in a sport that will improve your overall health, not just physical health, but mental and emotional health as well.
Perhaps you grew up watching the sport on TV, or hearing about it through your parents and dreamed of being one of the best in the world. It is a dream to master this amazing sport that includes three disciplines that will challenge you in every way.
Whatever your reason for participating in this amazing sport, it is so important to always stay connected to that reason – to know your WHY and remember your WHY every single day.
The key is this: once we begin the journey we must be clear about our mission.
1. Know your outcome.
What is it that you are looking to achieve? What are you looking to get out of this sport? Is it good health? Is it freedom from a past addiction? Is it to master the sport and become one of the greats? Or is it to discover your potential and tap into that potential, allowing you to be all that you can be in life, with a newfound sense of self and self-confidence.
2. Know your meaning – the WHY behind your participation in this sport.
3. Assess where you are now, and where you want to be.
4. Figure out what it will take to get from here to there.
5. TAKE MASSIVE ACTION!
As in everything in life, there will be obstacles along the way. The key is not to give up or let it get you down. Keep persisting. Always be connected to your WHY. Find alternative ways of getting to where you want to go. Be willing to be flexible. It is often after many ‘fails’ that we achieve our biggest successes. Why? Because we don’t fail, we LEARN. Each time we learn something more about ourselves, about what needs to be done to get where we want to go, or about what doesn’t work, so we are free to try other ways.
Never give up. Never let yourself get defeated. Just be creative and stay on your path!
As long as you are always connected to that deep meaning behind the WHY of your participation, you will never lack the desire to keep working hard towards achieving the outcome you dream of.
Remember these simple steps. Don’t lose contact with your deep passion, your deep WHY. This is what fuels every single session, every single moment training. This is what makes even the mundane chore of getting yourself and your bike ready to go out for a ride, exciting – if you let it.
Gratitude is something that I have found always spices up everything in life. It can take a run where you are exhausted and make it a near bliss experience. Think about your beating heart. It is the most beautiful and powerful gift. We didn’t have to pay for it, we didn’t have to work for it, we didn’t have to beg for it.
We received this as a gift upon birth. It keeps us thriving, alive and functioning in the most miraculous ways. The simplest thing to make us all feel grateful is to put our hands on our hearts, feel the power in the hearts beat, and celebrate being alive.
Take that with you on your run and look around you. The sky and all its beauty and variety. Clouds, striking blue, rain, rainbows, birds and expansive views. Notice the dogs running along. The walk they are on and the greatest thing that could ever happen in their minds. So simple. Simple joy.
We can experience the same if we allow ourselves to live as often as possible in our hearts. To celebrate life, and the opportunities that we have, to thrive, to shine and to grow.
Wishing you all happy training and great fulfilment on your journey.
IMAGES: Siri Lindley