I gotta tell ya -- I have to stop and catch myself in the act of blowing it for myself again. I've gotten a lot of positive feedback on my recent decisions to simplify and clarify my life and my pursuits, and all of this feedback echoes my desire to get the passion back, get the FUN back. Fun. Hmmmm... there are a few statements that ring very true:
"It's supposed to be fun... if it stops being fun, you should stop doing it."
That's a rough paraphrase of multiple comments I've received off-line to this year, cycling, goal-setting. Most recently, someone coined the phrase and advised caution against setting goals for the sake of setting goals. It's dangerous business, and can lead to even MORE burnout. My tenacity and desire to keep true to what I set out upon is admirable, I don't mind saying so -- but it's also like continuing to hammer a nail that's already bent flat. No good can come of it, and it will only take more and more effort to get that nail out and straight again.
Despite yesterday's post and the beginning of a change in scope and focus, I'm withdrawing my goal to run in the 2008 WDW Marathon. The fact of the matter is, as I sat in the garage and put my old running shoes on again last night, there was NOTHING crossing my mind equating "this is gonna be fun", or "I can't wait to go on this run." My whole approach was "I have to do this." -- WHY??? Yeah, I have this goal, a goal that I set back in early June, when things were VERY different, but it's JUST a goal -- it's not a goal that will be fun reaching. It will be a means to another end, the end of getting fit again for cycling. I don't enjoy running -- I don't know how that is suddenly going to change enough to get me ready to do 26.2 miles of it. Mentally or physically.
I know -- blah blah blah -- but I'd rather bow out of this now, when I have this realization, instead of dragging this out for three more months, turning this into a runner's blog, and then dissapointing myself and anyone still silly enough to read this with another shortcoming. I don't want to do that to myself, much less anyone else.
Will I cross train? Yeah -- but it will be towards my REAL goals, which are all cycling-related. I'm a cyclist, not a runner. No pretending. No apologies. Now, sure, I'll get a few runs in -- probably do a 5K this November, an annual fun event. But, I can't fool myself into thinking I love running enough to have such a lofty goal. I think with the proper training, yes, I COULD indeed finish a marathon. Do I "NEED" to? No. I think I'm making the smarter choice here, for my mental well-being - which is why I stepped away from so much recently in the first place. Getting the passion back for cycling isn't going to come from torturing myself in a discipline I don't enjoy.
This is why close friends are important -- the confusion I heap onto myself, the stress that I bring on MYSELF; it's nice to have people close to the home camp that provide a lot of clarity. There is something honarable about sticking to my goals, but I have to believe that there is also something honorable about realizing when those goals are misguided. The only thing I risk here is accountability -- saying one thing, at one time, and then retracting it. This is why I'd never go far as a politician. I actually EXPECT people to hold me acocuntable for things I've said I'd do! Shocker!
Certain goals remain: lose weight, get faster, and ENJOY riding. How I get there has to be my business. I don't think running my buns off is gonna do it all. Yoga and weights-class, however, man I REALLY enjoyed those! Nothing wrong with that. But I'm not setting any ridiculous goals like "be the next yogi" or "kick the weights-class teacher's butt.", or "be the next ultimate cage-fighting champion."
It's the same kind of thing, really, and when I put it in perspective, it really DOES seem silly to try and prepare for a marathon in three months when I HATE RUNNING. There, I said it. Now, I WILL push myself and run some 5K's for training, but I'm not going to push my luck. I need my mid-section burnt off, and running WILL help - but I need to keep that perspective, and focus on the goal of burning off my midsection. The running THEN becomes a method by-which to accomplish THAT goal. And that makes a TON more sense.
My brain is a confusing place -- a place where one moment I can say with such conviction that I'm going to do "this", and then later getting this "dude, you're dumb" realization. It's happened a lot. The Cannondale fiasco; looking back -- wow. What the hell? I never claimed this blog was going to be the place where all of your answers would come, where great examples of achievement would come. I will give you heaps of honesty, though. Eventually. I have to figure out how to be honest with myself, first. I'm getting there.