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Eat. Pray. Love. Tri.

One should not watch the movie “Eat Pray Love” when in a crisis.

I guess I’m not in a crisis per se, but I’ve been digging around in my own head for a few weeks now…. that and coupled with the kick in the gut of no longer having my triathlon touchstone (the Monster)… I had been feeling a tad lost.

So I saw that movie years ago, and it didn’t mean anything to me.

But now, in my current not-a-crisis crisis, I’m began thinking that packing up my stuff and heading to Bali might be my answer too.  “I had actively participated in every moment of the creation of this life—so why did I feel like none of it resembled me? Why did I feel so overwhelmed with duty, tired of being [a] breadwinner and the housekeeper and the social coordinator and….the wife —somewhere in my stolen moments—a writer…?”

Yikes. [Shaking head furiously to expel thoughts and water from ears.]

So instead of thinking about Bali, I hauled my butt to the gym this morning.

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[BTW – ended up skipping half marathon on Sunday and riding with this dude.  Rev3 Anderson on Sunday for him.]

As I finished up a solid run and a swim performance test (10 x 100 for time? Hello. Ouch.), I realized that I was just missing one thing in my life. One  thing, at this moment. 

Gratitude.

True and honest and real gratitude.  I write about this all the time. All the time, but it’s a thing that I struggle with, over and over again. In my search to be better…I often forget a very important fact:

I am just fine the way I am.  And I should be very grateful for who I am, what I have, and especially for those people who love me.  And I should be grateful for those people who don’t love me, because they make me want to work harder to prove them wrong.

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I thought about taking a long break from training after Augusta.  Like, no training at all for a very long while.

But then I remembered that one morning before my first half Ironman …when my mom called me and told me that their house was on fire. And I look back and see the real struggle my parents went through with the fire. But fast forward to now, the pain of the fire is no more. And in its place is a beautiful new home, rebuilt and stronger than ever.

To continue building and growing, I have to keep moving forward.  Yes, I am slowing down, but I am not stopping.  Stopping doesn’t work.

As I wrote in a post after my parents’ fire, I was reminded of the same words this morning:

Triathlon is about so many things:  fitness, health, drive, and all the good things that sports bring into your life. But triathlon, I think perhaps more than any sport, is about the human condition.  The fight of life, the going against the easy way out. The desire for freedom, for love…for the love of freedom. 

Something about triathlon…in those long periods of quiet suffering on a bike or on a run, you can find yourself, seek your purpose in life, help others in ways that would have, at one time, seemed impossible…and in those moments, you are immeasurably blessed.”

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Triathlon is a wonderful pair of glasses.  When I “tri” correctly, I see my world just a little more clearly.  And today, during those painful swim sets, I was able to see my life for what it truly is.

Turns out, I don’t really want to go to Bali.  At least not permanently…

Instead, I want to watch “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” on my old worn-out couch, sandwiched in between two stinky munchkins, with an Expert foam rolling his IT band on the floor near us.

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That’s my Bali. 

16 Comments

  • Kristen

    October 8, 2013 at 11:11 am

    Love this. You say so many things that are good reminders for us all. I especially like the thoughts about the long periods of suffering on the bike & run. I do tend to go to a dark place on the long rides – this is such a great reminder that there are so many other places to go that are not dark! Thank you always for sharing your journey. My hubby and I will be in Anderson for Rev3 this weekend too – I would love to meet you in person!

    Reply
  • Marcia Craven

    October 8, 2013 at 11:14 am

    Thanks so much for this post… exactly what I needed to hear today! I have been reading the book and I keep thinking…Oh, to load up and just go! Where could my life be in a year… my children are grown, I’m recently divorced… WHAT DIRECTION AM I GOING IN??? But I am so thankful that God has placed many wonderful people in my life and has given me the strength and will to run my first marathon in Dec 2013. Thank you for reminding me to be grateful EVERYDAY!

    Reply
  • Jess

    October 8, 2013 at 11:15 am

    Love this. My own “expert” husband reminded me of this just the other day after wayyyy too many days of me having a bad attitude, doubting myself and getting frustrated with how slow I run while training for my first marathon. I think gratitude is key… and I already notice a huge shift in my attitude and perspective. Now it’s “I get to run” instead of “I have to”. I just might need to get it tattooed across my face to remind myself of that. 🙂 Great post as usual…

    Reply
  • Nancy M

    October 8, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    I will be running a HM next Saturday and quite frankly I am tired and worn and feeling my age… and as I typically do with anything, I go back and forth between wanting to do it {as slow as I am} and just saying ‘forget it’. Lately I have even thought about stopping running after this. I’m not sure why I am feeling this way… but I’m thinking GRATITUDE is lacking in my life. I like Jess’s comment above “I get to run” not “I have to run”… as always, thank you Meredith for a thoughtful post 🙂

    Reply

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