PART 4 : Leaning in / Reflection
It’s hard to believe that in exactly one week from now, this journey I have been on will reach its peak and the culmination of 12 weeks of mental, emotional and physical effort will be put to the ultimate test as I tackle the Busselton 70.3 Half Ironman.
This blog is a reflection on some changes and realizations I have unexpectedly discovered along this bumpy ride, that have had a huge impact on me. Some of you may relate , some may not. Regardless , I’m happy in myself that I have taken this opportunity to express and share these thoughts and feelings with you.
I signed up for a test of will and a test of fitness, what I have gained in the process goes far beyond this.
So, without further ado….
In the beginning, I was narrow minded with my approach. All of my focus lent toward the end goal of completing a Half Ironman. I was of the mindset that just by doing the half ironman I was going to be a better person, I just needed to tick it off so to speak and bang, a better version of me would wake up the next morning. What I soon realised as I delved deeper into my training was that all the growth I was truly looking for was locked up in the process. The hours of training, getting uncomfortable , discipline and enjoyment has enabled me to immerse myself in the process which intern has unlocked the growth I have been seeking.The race itself is simply the icing on the cake in this journey.
Be present with the process , enjoy the process, trust the process, the rest takes care of itself.
Through discipline, I have been able to create time, time that has been necessary to get done what I have needed to get done in order to achieve my goal without compromising my roles as a husband, father to my 3 boys , friend , business owner and coach.
Many a time over this past 12 weeks have I wrestled with the voice in my head when things have gotten tough. I Particularly struggled when session lengths got longer , start times got earlier, guilt set in when training and when the toll on the body / need for recovery got demanding. I had moments of wanting to pull the pin and thoughts of “taking the morning off” regularly but was able to call on the self discipline I have developed in this process to keep me honest and on track. I was able to get past a heap of hurdles I was creating for myself.
Discipline has taught me that I can have as much quality time to do what I want with who I want, when I want , but…. I have to really want it.
Discipline really does create opportunity as I have found out first hand this past 12 weeks.
3. Accumulate the reps:
Regardless of what the task is or end goal may be, if you really want it you have to be willing to put in the work.
“ Nothing worth having comes easy” as they say.
This journey has solidified to me that if you are willing to consistently “accumulate” good reps you will eventually force the hand of change in a positive way.
The catch is this though : You must do , do repetitively and do with actual purpose, it has to be meaningful to make positive change. If you are doing for the sake of doing or when it’s convenient, expect a mediocre return on investment and only you can take responsibility for this.
There will be resistance along the way ,embrace it, that’s when you know it’s go time , resistance = the vehicle for growth and the perfect time to go all in!
4. Self exploration / Self improvement :
The numerous hours of solo running , riding and swimming has equated to plenty of time to think ( as you can tell by this blog).
Lots of this thinking was about others , lots was about myself. With both in mind , this was an honest discovery which I will be putting lots of work into moving forward:
I find comfort in discomfort when it comes to physical test like this Ironman. These challenges of “will”, “mindset” and “heart” are actually a safe house for me in comparison to other parts of my life.
I can very easily set myself goals and am willing to push myself to the limit in order to achieve them. When it gets hard, I work harder. I have done the same when competing in Crossfit, playing footy and in business. Always willing to do the work, I can always depend on my work ethic.
Outside of these “fitness” tests, and work, I feel I don’t apply myself with this same relentlessness. In certain aspects of life and in relationships I just cruise through at 70%… just get it done and if it gets hard or uncomfortable I will back off a little so to speak. I don’t set the same standards for myself in these parts of life when I know I should.
Moving forward , I am now far more aware of the space of which I need to lean in on, level up and focus my energy and effort on and in. The space that will challenge me far more than this Ironman prep but will be tenfold more rewarding, which is huge!
I have had many more takeaways from my experience however these 4 are the ones I felt most worthy to express to you.
As it stands, this time next week I will have completed the half Ironman. Am I ready? Absolutely! How do I know this? I have accumulated all of the reps, everyone that has been on offer to me over this past 12 weeks. I have given my all and each rep has had purpose. I am so excited to empty the tank , test my heart , test my mind and see what this process delivers next weekend. No matter the result next Saturday , I am proud.