This week I was thinking about the upcoming events that I signed up for which I have not trained for and subsequently have no realistic hope of doing well. I have 4 events that fall into this bucket: a local sprint tri near the end of August, a local half marathon near the end of September, IMAZ in November, and the Disney Half Marathon in January 2014. All except IMAZ I could slog through and finish but what would be the point? I've proven multiple times that I can slog through an event without training. It ain't pretty.
But then I thought again, specifically focusing on Disney. My daughter will be racing. Last year she just missed her goal to finish sub 2:00 and this year she wants go well under that time. I will be there no matter what. Last year when we did the same dance I walked the whole thing. I did finish. I wasn't last but was close to it. I wasn't swept. I got the medal. On one hand that can be viewed as a success. On the other hand, a failure. Then the epiphany hit me: what would it take to not consider the 2014 flavor of Disney a failure?
A noble effort.
To me a noble effort doesn't mean a specific finishing time. It doesn't mean a specific finishing place. It does mean trying to do my best given my current fitness and body composition state. It does mean training for the race. It does mean getting the scale heading down and not up or sideways. It does mean prioritizing with everything else going on.
So I called my coach and bounced this Disney idea off him. He hasn't been coaching me for a while since when I realized that I wasn't doing the workouts. He only coaches a limited number of athletes at a time to make sure he can provide the necessary individualized coaching but he said that he would make room for me given our history and prior success. He is crafting a plan that will really be a triathlete centric plan with enough of a running bias to race the half Mary. A problem is that I'm starting at close to zero in fitness.
More of an issue is my weight. This is my biggest limiter and I need to address this not for the half Mary, although losing weight will help tremendously, but for life in general. This morning I joined Weight Watchers. My weight on their scale was the highest I've ever measured. Some of it had to be that I was on vacation last week and didn't limit what I ate in any manner. More of it is that I'm just plain ole fat. Weight Watchers will be tough with my upcoming travel but I'd rather give it a shot and come close as compared to not giving it a shot and continuing on my destructive trajectory. I had a choice to go today or wait a couple of weeks when the workouts begin. I chose today.
I realize that doing this will get me in a better place than not doing this but it requires a noble effort. Talking about this or writing about this or dreaming about this means nothing without actually doing it.
So I'm doing something. Let's see how long I can keep doing it. Wish me well.