Earlier this week, I went to a parent’s meeting for my son’s travel lacrosse team. Normally, I HATE going to meetings like this. It’s all blah, blah, blah. An hour or so of sitting on uncomfortable chairs listening to some talking head ramble on about something that doesn’t interest me.
This week’s meeting was a little different. One of the topics was how to support our kids in a positive way. Far too many parents get WAY TOO INTO their kids’ sports. Yelling at them. Yelling at the refs. Yelling at the coaches. Expecting too much from them. In fact, 44% of kids that quit sports do so because they just are no longer fun.
Kids play sports not because they want to play in college or the pros (well…some do). They play sports because it’s fun to play sports. Their friends are there. They make new friends playing sports.
So this got me thinking. Why do I tri?
It’s really painfully clear that I’ll never be a pro triathlete. I likely will never qualify to go to Kona. Hell, I probably won’t ever win my age group. None of that really matters to me.
I tri because it’s FUN! I may complain about going on a hard swim or run, but at the end of the day, I totally enjoy this sport.
I love going to races, and not only to race myself. I love meeting people. Checking out their gear. Marveling at how fast people swim or bike or run. I love the nervous feeling I get as I wait for the starting horn. I enjoy the mental battles I have with myself as I hurt on the run. I enjoy getting faster.
I love what triathlon does for my body. In the past year and a half, I’ve lost almost 20 pounds, dropped 30 points in my cholesterol, and lost most of my “muffin”. I’ve developed calves that freak my kids out. I have muscles in my back that I never realized existed. Now, if I could just get Tri to regrow the hair on my head, I’d be all set.
I know that some people are all about the competition. Racing folks and winning. Taking podium spots. Good for them. To each their own.
For me, tri is all about enjoying the experience. What’s it all about for you?