My Dad always told me as I was growing up that the older you get the faster time goes. I can’t believe how right he is. I just have no idea where the time goes. On Wednesday I turn 24. I can’t believe it. This past year has definitely been the fastest one of my life. And also I think the one where I changed the most.

I seriously cannot believe how much can change in just one year. I think I really grew up this year and learned so much about myself. Last year at this time things were not great. I was in a tough place. I had just gone through a really bad breakup and just didn’t know what I wanted in life. I fell back into the same pattern as all of my friends of drinking way too much, being hungover, and lazy all the time, and I just hated it. I felt so blah. I hated lazing around, watching so much tv, and drinking so much. I felt like my life was going nowhere. There was nothing that defined me. There was absolutely nothing I felt passionate about and that really upset me.

DB (for those newbies—DB is my ex-bf. It stands for Douchebag) and I had signed up to do a 10k (my 2nd race ever) and even though we broke up and I hadn’t trained at all, I decided to do it anyway. I wanted to run it for me and nobody else. So I did and I had so much fun. It felt so great and I loved that I was doing something that I wanted to do because I wanted to do it. So I signed up for another. And another. And another 🙂

Then you know the story—one thing led to another, bought a bike and loved that, and figured I might as well try a tri.

It was by no means an easy year. I fell down. A lot. Both literally and figuratively.

I dealt with injuries.

And I certainly dealt with doubt.

But I never gave up. I challenged myself in ways that I never thought possible.

I started 23 having never run more than 6.2 miles and since then I have run 6 races greater than that distance.

I learned how to really ride a bike—clipless pedals and all (ok—this is still a work in progress)

I learned how to swim! That first day I literally could not swim with my face in the water and I couldn’t make it 25 yards. Last week I did a 3000 yard workout 🙂

I made some great new friends who love the same things as me.

Summer:

Fall:

Winter:

Spring:

I ran 10 races as a 23 year old. My race wall is growing!

What I love best about racing is that it all comes down to you. What YOU are capable of. Of course none of it would be possible without a support system. I have an amazing family who supports me and my crazy ideas. I have great friends who train with me and wish me luck. And of course, most recently I have a great coach who plans my workouts and reassures me when I’m feeling down, and inspires me. But ultimately I am the one putting in the time and effort, paying my blood, sweat, and tears. And when I cross that finish line it is something that nobody can ever take away from me.

I love the person that this sport has helped me become. I am mentally and physically stronger than I have ever been in my life. I am so much more appreciative of life and health, and a beautiful day. I love swimming and biking and (sometimes) running, and I am so glad that I get to do those things every day! I have worked so hard this past year and this is just the beginning. I know I am capable of so much and I can’t wait to see all the great things that 24 will bring!

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