Courtney Abrams, Health Coach, Triathlete
I never wanted to run a 5K, let alone a triathlon. It wasn’t on my bucket list, goals list, hopes and dreams list or any other list I have. But, roughly three months ago, I embarked on a training program to do the very thing I never considered doing. A triathlon. And, I’m so very glad I did. Here’s what I’ve learned from the experience:
1. Yes, you can.
Before I started this process, I had never run a 5K, and I hadn’t really gone in a pool in the last 25 years, other than for leisure. And I really disliked sitting on a bike. By the end of the training period, I was able to run over 3 miles at my fastest(and most consistent) pace, ride my bike comfortably for 15 miles, and slog my way through a swim. By challenging myself to do things I had always assumed I couldn’t do, I found out that I am capable of a lot more than I gave myself credit for.
2. Don’t skimp.
What I thought would be a cakewalk, wasn’t. I swam competitively in high school and always considered myself a strong swimmer, so I put the least amount of focus and training in that area. My triathlon was a reverse tri so the swim came at the end. At that point, my legs were rubber. This, combined with very warm water, made what I assumed would be the easy part not easy at all.
3. The best time is now.
Let’s face it, I am not going to be a professional athlete. I was in ok shape when I started but not tiptop. A lot of people told me they would love to do a tri, but just weren’t the in right shape physically. I think this is kind of silly. If you train and commit to sufficient time, (yes, you might have to get up a little early or move some things around) you will get there. During the triathlon I saw people of all different sizes and shapes. There were people riding bikes with baskets, and people running in their board shorts. Don’t use your body as an excuse. Make your body the tool you need to get you there.
4. You gotta have friends. Real life or digital.
There is no way I could have done this on my own. I did not have the focus, determination, or motivation. I like to exercise and feel in shape; it was the combined forces of Coach Kirsten‘s training program, the amazing group of women in I did this with, and a Couch to 5K app that kept me going towards the finish line. Maybe you are a completely self motivated individual, but if you’re anything like me I suggest you find an app, a book, a training group, and make those your companion to succeed in whatever it is you wish to do.
5. Have fun!
The end of the day, this is about accomplishing a goal. This isn’t about becoming an Ironman or Olympic gold medalist. The time you have on that day is your personal best, and the next race you’ll try to beat that time or match it or maybe be slower then it. Either way you’re still doing right by your body, mind, and being. Even if you walk 5K, you’re still doing a 5K. Next time, maybe you’ll jog. You would be shocked at what you can do when you set your mind to it.
Let me know your thoughts on fitness, triathlons, and good stuff like that.
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About the Author: Courtney Abrams is a Health Coach and Founder of Roslyn Wellness. Trained at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, she helps clients work within the realities of their day to day lives to find ways to make small and manageable changes to their health that can maintained over time. Her clients include people trying to lose weight, beat sugar, increase their energy, cook simple healthful food and reduce stress to name a few. She also shares a passion for food policy and educating people about the foods they are eating and the governmental role behind much of it. You can learn more about Courtney and Roslyn Wellness at http://RoslynWellness.com.