O2fitness is proud to sponsor and train the Bike Like A Girl RAAM team. Below team member Rosie Barnes shares her trials and triumphs training through the depths of Annapolis's wretched winter. To learn more about the team and their mission, visit www.bikelikeagirl.org and follow them on Facebook. It's been quite some time since I had to train throughout the winter in order to be ready for a spring race. It's depressing. It's just so far from summer and warmth and sunshine that the fun meter gets pegged on zero early and stays there indefinitely. No doubt mental endurance training at its absolute finest. As we say in the Navy, "You can't buy fun like this!"
The last time I did intense winter training was in preparation for Ironman St. George about four years ago. It was five long, dark, depressing months of 5 am spinning in front of ESPN Sports Center during basketball season. And I hate basketball. My dog was less impressed than I was and spent his mornings burrowed into the couch while I ground it out on my trainer.
Our current Bike Like a Girl training plan is bringing back memories of those dark mornings. Julie Young and O2 Fitness have set us up on a great plan. Which means it's kicking my butt. This always leads me to question the sanity of the endeavor upon which I found myself. Over and over again. Why on earth would someone sign up for this knowing full well the sizable investment of time with low return on sleep and fun? Didn't I learn this lesson last time? There's no consistent answer to that question from person to person which is to be expected.
However, I find that even in my own head, I have varying responses for this particular "WTH"? Perhaps this week it's because I want to remain relevant in the world ("Dammit, I used to be somebody!"), and use this God given vessel to do cool things. Last week it was, "because it's for a good cause". Next week, it'll be, "because it gives my students a great example of a lifetime of fitness". With no consistent reason at all even inside my own head, then...why?
The real reason is simply because I. Cannot. Make. Myself. Stop. Throw me a good challenge and I will not refuse. I didn't get the "no" gene. And therein lies the beauty of the painful life lessons of being a high-maintenance, ultra Type-A, OCD person who has no apparent will or ability to say no. Since we can't possibly make ourselves stop, then we might as well go. But if we are gonna go, then how are we going to do it in a sustainable way that doesn't break our finances, break our families, break our bodies or break our hearts in the process. Where's the tipping point of sustainability?
I'm still learning. But what I do know, from the vantage point of being a 40-something competitive athlete who's been in competition with mostly herself all her life, that there really is a distinct edge, a tipping point, a breaking point. And just ever so slightly behind it is that magical sweet spot of balance where I can say yes to life without creating life catastrophe. I need to stop short at that place. It's ironic, then, that you won't find it until you go all the way to the edge. Race towards the precipice and push all out until your toes come to a skidding halt just over the edge while you watch pebbles fall into the canyon below. And holy crap is that scary. But wow!! Look at that stunning view!
Now that's a reason to keep going.
#bikelikeagirl #yesman #icantsayno #thankyousirmayihaveanother