A couple of weeks ago I posted a status update on my Facebook. " Dream big. Work hard. Make it happen." It's my motto for 2011 and one several of my friends have decided to adopt as well. I really consider myself to be very blessed to have the support group around me that not only believes in me, but has decided to join me in my journey to continue to push myself. My family has fully embraced my endurance sports lifestyle and is actively involved in every phase of my journey to the Ironman. My friends who aren't endurance athletes themselves have allowed me to be obsessive, put up with my schedule, and listen to my non-stop talk of everything running or triathlon. Several of my friends through Team-in-Training have decided to take the leap into the Ironman distance as well. We all started this crazy triathlon journey together almost exactly one year ago from today. We trained together. We learned together. We grew together. Now we are all taking a leap together. Four of us will be tackling the Ironman distance in late summer/early fall. I honestly didn't expect it to happen this way, but we're all going to be in this together. It's going to be such a great asset to have built-in training partners who I've come to respect and admire over the past year. My coworkers have started to take an increasingly active role in my lifestyle as well. They are encouraging, respectful, and inquisitive. They no longer chastise me for missing a happy hour or for skipping the donuts. They have become almost like a second conscience reminding me that I probably shouldn't eat bad or go drink because I probably have to go run or bike after work. At first this was all a challenge because it was such a big change from my norm. Now, it's almost second nature and a way of life. My network around me has come full circle and I couldn't take this leap without all of their support. I don't think everyone truly realizes how much they play a role in the pursuit of my dreams. It's through this blog and through my own words and actions that I hope to convey this message. If I know you, you're a part of this journey too. I hope you'll continue to dream big with me.
I want to leave you with a quote I saw on a blog post by Josh Scobey on the Trakkers website. It's a great reminder for all of us as we get deeper into our 2011 schedule:
"Keep training and keep smiling…remember, triathlon is a choice we make…not a burden."