In two days, I’ll be packing up the car with my gear, Red Rocket, and the first and greatest cheer crew I’ve ever had – my parents – to go to Augusta for my first half-iron distance triathlon. For those of you sane enough not to know what that entails, I get to swim 1.2 miles in a river, ride 56 miles on a bike, then run 13.1 miles. This is going to take me all. day.
It’s taken countless hours and a disturbing percentage of my salary to get to this point. And I’m pretty stoked about it. Which is weird.
“But Lady J,” you start. “Why would it be weird for you to look forward to something you chose to do?”
This is triathlon number five. I was BEYOND terrified for triathlons 1-3. #4 was a bit better and I distinctly remember feeling odd that I didn’t feel terrified. Probably because I wrote it down. Number 5? I’m not saying I think it’s going to go perfectly, but I think I’m gonna have a damn good time. From the get go, baby.
I’ve maintained that piano performance and triathlon are totes the same. The preparation. The nerves. The ridiculousness of the task at hand. Imma be real with y’all – while I might not literally fear for my life when I’m on stage as I may have in the water or on the bike course, swimming, biking, and running seem like much more reasonable requests to make of someone than asking her to memorize thousands of notes in a specific order to be played at a specific time in a specific way. That being said, as I’ve prepared for both types of events, the problems I’ve encountered don’t lie in my body. My arms, legs, feet – fingers – work just fine, praise God. It’s about putting the hours in to allay the fears that I am not good enough or that I don’t deserve a place on the stage or on the course.
Less than 100 hours remain between Augusta and me. Coachie and pretty much everyone else on earth are saying that this is the time that jacks with people the most. Questioning if you’ve sufficiently trained. Intimidated by people you’ve never met with more experience, strength, speed, or all three. I think I’m calmer now than I’ve ever been in my whole life. What’s gonna happen is gonna happen, man. Don’t get it twisted – I’m not saying that I won’t be nervous on Sunday. I just know that it’s my time. My time to show myself what I’m made of. My time to put myself to the test. My time to celebrate the physical health with which I’ve been blessed. However it ends, it will be my time to decide how to move forward to continue growth.
I’ve been getting ready for this all my life.