I had a milestone birthday a few years back. I turned the fabulous age of 60, and I declared that this was the beginning of doing things that push me way out of my comfort zone. So call me crazy. Call me courageous. Call me nuts! Either way, I did something I never thought I would do. I trained for and completed a triathlon. It was hard, and I wanted to quit so many times. I kvetched, complained, cursed and cried a lot. But I did not stop. I did not give up.
Now I am a triathlete, not once but twice! I have always been confident but having started and completed this journey has brought me a refreshed sense of resiliency, self-worth and vibrancy.
When it comes to group sports, I have what I call ‘play’ anxiety. I don’t know where it has come from, it is just there. I recognized it and the tri training gave me the experience to challenge my assumptions.
The journey has been challenging and inspiring. Putting my head underwater and conquering my fears of the deep water were the most challenging. So this tri thing scared me. I tried not to focus on the end goal, but to celebrate all the small accomplishments along the way. I learned how to enjoy the journey, and not look at it as work.
This process made me both stronger and more confident. I love being in the water and I continue to swim with a masters swim group today. Being in the water now is one of my happy places. I continue to learn how to push myself beyond my self imposed limitations and ‘play anxiety’ assumptions.
Now that I am both a swimmer and a two time triathlete, what’s next? Another triathlon, a swim meet or learning how to play the piano? Or maybe all three. Stay tuned. I’m not done yet.
Remember you are never too old and it is never too late!