Good morning Reno – happy Friday!
The crisp, cool air is starting to sweep into the valley in the mornings. With morning temps a cozy 58 degrees, and highs barely scratching the 90s, it definitely means that fall is fast approaching.
Fall is amazing for a wide variety of reasons, but especially shorts weather during the day/sweatshirts at night, hot chocolate or hot apple cider (bring your own whiskey), college football, a much less break-neck pace to things, and, of course, the end of triathlon season.
Putting a wrap on a season is two things. First, it is ALWAYS a relief. For eight, nine, or ten months, you fire away on a dedicated plan, early mornings, scheduled workouts, and events that push you to the limit. I just always feel like I’m “on,” which is both invigorating and draining at the same time.
Second, the end of a season is also somewhat of a melancholy experience. You look back at what you learned over the course of many months, focusing on the things that you botched, and the one or two gems that you did really well. That season, for all of its ups and downs, is unique and will never be repeated.
What I enjoy most about season reflection (while reading and enjoying a delicious hot chocolate), is thinking about how the racing, the training, and the boundary pushing intermingle with the major and minor life events I experienced during the year. There’s also more overlap than one might think.
I have two races left before I officially call it “a year,” although I still have some trail runs planned, as well as dabbling in cyclocross with my wife. Tomorrow, I’m tackling California’s toughest sprint triathlon with some of my co-conspirators from Reno, and in two weeks, we’ll be trekking to Santa Cruz for a revenge race on last year. I have no anxiety about it; I simply am out to have fun.
Will I miss the 2018 season? No, I can definitely say I shall not be missing it. A small part of me misses the full-blown experience of training for a full IRONMAN (140.6 miles of mental game), but in general, I’m quite happy I didn’t try to tackle one for 2018.
The Great Book of Life is written in many chapters, and the fall chapter always brings with it winds of change. A chance to unwind, enjoy a shift away from scorching desert heat (and those darn California wildfires), and provides plenty of opportunity for some soul-searching, reflection, and planning (or unplanning!).
I have found over the years that the business world is also seasonal. When I worked for the University of Nevada, our schedule was heavily driven by the semester, but even in my other places of work, we ramp up, leap for the edge, fly, and then bring it back down to the ground in some kind of cyclical manner. Sometimes it’s calendar related, others it is simply project timeline driven. But the takeaway is that change is always near…
Our lives are constantly in a state of flux, bouncing between dealing with incredibly positive circumstances, being handed road bumps and small hurdles along with some victories, and, of course, there are chapters riddled with heart-wrenching struggles and bleary-eyed days where you wonder how you are going to make it through.
The journey of life is a great feast – a delectable table of food and refreshment set before us to be sampled, enjoyed, and most of all – experienced. There are going to be some foods you find appalling, others that might make you turn a little green, and if it serves you well, a taco buffet will also be included :D That variety will always drive the sweet times along with the bitter, but we must persist regardless, because we know that we have a wonderful dessert waiting for us at the end.
Let’s fire it up!
Picture credit: all media taken from Google searches.