Don’t Wait

Don’t wait. Life is unpredictable.

That was a written in a text I received yesterday morning from a friend I swim with. I had sent out several “Happy Thanksgiving” messages and he and I were chatting a bit after I swam. He had run the local Turkey Trot that morning and now is considering a marathon after a few years off. Being a distance swimmer first, he is also looking into a 10 mile swim next summer. That is something I can not imagine, nor do I have the desire to attempt. I did share with him something I have not even written in my blog yet. This past Monday the 19th Ironman Arizona in Tempe had open registration online for the very few spots available. I went online just when registration opened and I was able to apply. I saw the words “your spot will be held for 15 minutes while you complete the application” and I started slowing down my typing. I have been considering a full Ironman triathlon, but my initial plan has been to do it in 2014. In the end I decided to wait. I would like to do another marathon next year as well as at least one century bike ride before I commit. When I told my friend I stopped the registration process because I wanted to wait, he replied “Don’t wait. Life is unpredictable.”

The race filled up within an hour, so I know I am not going to do it. There is a small part of me that has not completely committed to participating in a full Ironman triathlon. The distances are daunting – 2.4 miles of swimming, 112 miles of cycling, and 26.2 miles running. All must be completed within 17 hours. I think I could complete it within 14 hours or so, but still the idea is overwhelming to me right now. Not to mention the training commitment. What I do know is that I have to be completely committed to the task before I register. That is what held me back. Still my friend’s words resonate within me.

This morning I ran 5 miles easy. I took today off from work, so I was able to sleep in and run while the sun was shining. I tackled the hills in my neighborhood and ran the 5 miles in just under an hour and kept my heart rate average at 133. My efficiency is certainly improving. I did not run with music but rather took in the experience both in sight and sound. And my mind rolled over those words. Don’t wait. Life is unpredictable. I do not regret waiting for the Ironman registration. But I want to remember these five words for so much that comes my way. Life is unpredictable. I want to continue with triathlon and running for as long as I am able and take on challenging races when I know it is right. More than just in sport, I don’t want to hold back sharing my appreciation for those in my life, experiencing things I have on my wish list, and taking in the beauty of each day. I know I do not want to have regrets because I waited when I could seize the day – today.

4 thoughts on “Don’t Wait

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  1. Here’s another phrase to consider: That which is urgent is often not important. That which is important is often not urgent. It’s a difficult balance to know when to just go for it because life is short versus when to slow down. Listening to your intuition, or gut, is usually the best way to go.

  2. I’m in the same boat. I want to do a Full Ironman as the next challenge, having done 2 70.3’s (and doing my third one this coming Sunday). I often think and hesitate, preferring to wait until I’m ready. But its like having children… If you wait until youre ready, you’ll never have one.

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