Hello from New Jersey! I’ve been spending the last few days here with my bestie, Sarah, enjoying my vacation. One of the main reasons I’m visiting the Northeast was not only to see my best friend, but to support her as she competes in her first-ever triathlon.
About a year or so ago, Sarah asked our other best friend if she and I would be interested in doing a triathlon with her. And if I’m being honest, I flat out told Sarah no, but that I’d watch her. And here I am!
The funny thing about witnessing a triathlon for the first time in person was that I thought I was there to support her and her niece, Jasmine. Even though I wasn’t participating, it was one of those experiences that gave back to me and taught me something.
Getting healthy isn’t just a physical thing. To me, it’s always been about mentality. Without the right mindset, you honestly can’t do anything.
So today, for my #WellnessWednesday post, I wanted to share five things I learned watching my bestie compete in her first triathlon.
Age is just a number.
Seriously. I’m not saying this just to say this. Many women between the ages of 15 to 80 were competing in the triathlon and I was in awe.
Once I found out that their ages are written on their calves, I made it a point to look at every woman’s calf to see their ages. And man, I was blown away! I don’t know how many times I said, “She is NOT ::insert age here::! Seriously?!”
It was incredibly inspirational to see so many women from all stages of life take on this challenge. Let me just say that I want to be like them when I get older!
Everyone needs encouragement.
Even after Sarah and Jasmine finished the swim portion, Rachel and I decided to stay and cheer on the rest of the swimmers. We didn’t want to get lost looking for the transition area between swimming and biking so we stayed back and kept cheering.
However, there was one woman who jumped in the lake after everyone had finished. We thought she was doing it for fun, but when we saw her suit, we knew she was in the race. We decided to continue to stay and cheer everyone running through to get their bikes.
And you know what? I’m SO glad I did. Because the last woman who ran through, legit said, “Thank you so much! I didn’t think anyone was going to cheer for me.” And I nearly teared up! Even though Rach and I were complete strangers to her, we were the encouragement she needed.
And once I heard her say that, I clapped and cheered louder for her to keep going. I don’t think I’ve ever been so touched being at a race!
Leave a legacy behind and let it run in the family.
At the end of the running portion, what warmed my heart was seeing kids run with their moms to the finish line. To see moms holding hands with their little ones as they exhaustedly ran towards the clock was something else to witness!
To me, I learned that you can leave a legacy with what you do. But to keep a legacy running in your family, you do it together!
Challenge yourself, do the work and be proud of yourself. Tears included.
I’m so proud of Sarah. She said she was doing a triathlon, took action and trained for it. In the end, she finished the entire race at 1:57 with a goal of 2:15 and I’m SO stinkin’ happy and proud of her! It was incredible to watch her and her niece finish what they set out to do.
What was equally great to see? A competitor crying at the end. Rachel and I were standing near the finish line cheering runners as they closed out their race. And about 20 feet before the finish, this woman was crying as she ran.
As our cheers got louder and we watched her finish, it was so heartfelt and inspiring to see her bend over and sobbing into her hands. I had just witnessed was one of those, “That was dang hard and I did it!” moments that I’ll never forget!
Physical/health goals begin with mentality.
As you know, I personally have health struggles myself. However, I’ve learned that you have to push through the mental to do the physical. Before, during and after a health goal, it’s important to be in the right mindset.
It was very evident on each woman’s face as they passed by that they did whatever it took to keep going. Giving themselves pep talks, talking to spectators, running with each other, listening to music, it was all needed to smash their ultimate goal: crossing finish line.
Even though I didn’t participate in the race, it was such an enlightening few hours to experience as a spectator. Honestly, it made me want to challenge myself to do something similar!
And if I ever compete in a race or even a relay-style triathlon, I now know what to expect and how to motivate myself.
How about you?
Have you ever thought about competing in a triathlon? If so, what are you learning so far in training?
And Sarah/Jasmine, if you’re reading this post, congratulations to you both on finishing your first triathlon! I know it was hard while you trained and definitely hard as you went through the course, so know that your hard work didn’t go unnoticed! I’m SO proud of you both and love y’all!