Sunday, March 24, 2013

Embracing normal; Athena no longer

When I signed up for my half-ironman distance race in January, I discovered a little something.

This year, for some reason, the USAT, the official governing body of triathlon in the U.S., has changed its Athena sub-category weight requirement from 150 pounds to 165 pounds.

I am an Athena, no longer.

I don't mind revealing to you that I haven't danced below 150 pounds since my wedding. I was a proud 147 for about 4 days.

I hit 150 after the freshman 15 and never got back.

I hit much more than 150 during my study abroad experience in the Netherlands. Olliebollen...poffertjes...stroopwafels...you had me at "Dag."

But 165 is not dancing weight for me. Especially during training season.

So I say goodbye to my possible podium finish...my once podium finish (3rd place Athena in my second Olympic-distance race)...and say hello to 'normal.'

Just. another. 'age-grouper.'

And it is a blip on the radar screen of my life. No trauma. No tragedy. No 'harumph.'

As you may have noticed, I like a little bit of attention. My poor husband has to sometimes give me the attention of an audience of 500 so that I can make it through my applause-less current vocation.

So when I signed up for my first triathlon, it was very enticing for me to think that I had a 'special' category for us curvy, 'big-boned' women. Images of extra medals and podium finishes started appearing in my pre-race dreams...there was a possibility I had a niche locked down. And with a cool name to boot! If I wasn't going to be performing full-time anymore, I could garner some pride and attention for myself with this extra little notion that I was a top athlete! In my category, of course.

But now, I'm just normal. I'm just attempting a half-iron-distance race and am just doing it...for me. For my own personal fitness, for my own personal life goals, just to direct my training...just to see this thing out...just to have something to work towards this summer year. To test out whether I have a chance of achieving my goal of possibly... [doing an Ironman before I'm 40.] I have to whisper it. It's kinda scary.

And I'm so happy to be normal.

As I approach that 40 age group, and yet it's taken me this long to get to, I'm really happy with my lot in life.

I don't need extra attention for being 'me.'

The twyns however. They're stinkin' cute and everyone should shout it...





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