Triathlon? Are You Kidding Me?


Approximately ten years ago I was fresh out of college, and fresh out of whatever physique I had developed during four years of multiple sports in high school. After getting married, settling down into a desk job and two kids, I saw my weight balloon to over 220 pounds. I lost my breath walking up small flights of stairs and couldn't keep up with my precocious children. I noticed changes in my attitude (depressed), motivation (non-existent), and libido (also depressed.)

I joined a gym and worked out often, but usually just wound up doing easy exercises before retiring to the steam room. More than I care to admit, I would stop at the fast food joint across the street on my way home. I was a pretty sad guy, to say the least. 

One night, my wife and I visited a friend, a woman in her mid-40s who, despite having birthed four kids (including triplets), was in great physical condition. She talked about her motivation to stay fit and setting reachable goals, focusing on a triathlon as the pinnacle.

In my mind a triathlon wasn't anything reachable at all. I remembered watching YouTube videos of people finishing races, crawling across the finish line, some with soiled underoos. I had crawled out of Chinese buffets that way, but that's something else entirely. 

No, triathlons were for the elites, just like marathons, Ironman races, and anything else that appeared difficult. Good for them, but not for me. I'll watch them on TV.

With what little exercise I had, and what muscle was left over from high school, I thought I was still in decent shape. Then I saw a photo of my wife and I, from our senior year of high school when we first started dating. She still looked as good as she had back then. I looked like I had eaten 18 year old me. 

It triggered a lot of soul searching. I thought a lot about my kids, and how I wanted to be around to see them grow up. No cheeseburger was worth missing out on that.

Kids always imagine they'll grow up to be professional athletes, or sexy celebrities, even firemen. No one daydreams about passing out on the recliner while still balancing a beer on their gut. 

Damnit, I was going to do something while I was still young and capable. I had been aiming low for years, so it was time to aim high. I resolved to not just do a triathlon, but I wanted to do it in a way that would change my life. I wanted to develop habits I could sustain for 50 years. 

Join me over my next few posts, and I'll take you through my story, which I think you might find useful for yourself.

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