Tuesday, 25 May 2010

You only get one shot so make it count

I am not, by an large, a fan of manufactured pop. However, this line, from manufactured pop band JLS, struck me as appropriate.
On Sunday morning, i sat in the garden, with a friend D, putting the world to rights. She drank water, and i drank tea. Lots of it. The subject of Ironman came up. And i began to try and explain why i do it. In much the same way as mountain climbers feel a need to climb the biggest, hardest or most challenging peaks, i guess the answer comes down to because i can. Because it is there. Because life is too short for dull underwear. Because, just occasionally, something happens that turns your world upside down, and you might never get this moment again. Every day is a day to celebrate being alive. For me, it is a day that i feel i have to make the most of, for my sake and that of my mum. She didn't get the chances that i have. So i push and push. I make my body do stuff it doesn't want to. I make my mind twist and turn inside out. Because sometimes it feels that to settle for anything less is cheating. My sister said to be life is too short to be miserable. She is of course, absolutely right. Do i push my body to its physical limits, and my mind till it hurts as a mask for being miserable? Who knows.

A tri mate of mine, TW, died doing a race on Sunday. Pushing his body to the limits, it just couldn't take any more. As triathletes, we accept a degree of danger, when we ride and train. Acknowledging the fact that we might have an accident whilst riding our bikes. But we don't expect our bodies to just give up on us. But sometimes, i guess we can only push so far, so hard and so fast for so long. I came home from work yesterday and decided i needed to ride. Hard. So i pushed myself on the bike. i was doing 27mph on the flat at one point. Which is nothing for some people, but is getting on for nearly double my normal average pace. I felt it was a fitting tribute to TW. To make the most of the moment; the evening sunshine; being fit and being alive. I sincerely hope he would have approved.

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