The Struggle is Real...

Hi! I know its been a while since I've blogged, but things have been quite hectic.

A lot of people have been asking how my training is going. "Is it hard?" They ask. Whenever I hear the question, I wonder to myself and think wow I better "really" start. After all we are 54 days away from the big race!

Is it hard? You know what the hardest part is? Trying to actually find the time to train..I would love to be a professional SUP athlete/surfer. I'd get to get up, drink coffee, train, eat, nap, train again, eat and then kick back and watch the sunset! But alas, dreams and reality clash.

My every day is faced with decisions. Get a massage or paddle? Run or paddle today, or can I do both or will that wear me out for the next day? Can I fit in a lunch time gym session? If I train at Bommarito Performance Systems can I make it home in time to get on my board? Should I use my vacation time for training? Be tired or rest? What about time to stretch it out with some yoga or swimming? When do I sleep in?

It didn't take long through the last few months to occur to me that there is quite a HUGE difference when it comes to training from those who do this full time to those who try to fit it all in (but still train to win and with a specific goal in mind). I'm at a crossroad, personally, with my advancement and placement in this sport.

Am I training more now? Yes. I mean about a year ago I was lucky if I paddled 6 miles a week. Now I my goal is 25 per week at least. This to some may seem so easy. Heck, I'm sure there are people who paddle this in one day. But for me this is a HUGE challenge. And then there are some that say, "well if it was important you would only focus on training and that's it. Everything else will need to be put aside. If you don't do that its not important to you". Well those people can shove it. Because lets get real folks, we ALL would love to be able to train in the morning at a normal time, get home and train some more and forget about everything else. But the real fact is...I have to wake up at 5 am if I want to workout before work. I have to be at my job at 7 five days a week, so I better leave enough time to shower before. Paddling is pretty much out before work since it takes so much time to do, so I am limited to a morning run which I usually only manage once a week. Then you sit at work and do your thing, the whole time thinking that there are some people who just woke up and went for an amazing paddle and are now eating breakfast or stretching, while the weather is perfect. I thought I would be able to jam in a paddle session between my lunch hour, but I tried that once and it took two people to coordinate how to get it to happen plus I was paddling while my stomach was growling, haha. Not so convenient. Then you are praying that it wont rain by the time you get out of work (because we all know how bipolar Florida weather is), and by the time 4pm comes, you are so mentally drained from the long day at work, it takes a gallon of pre-workout just to get you out the door. You finally get out and as we all know paddling takes about 2-3 hours to accomplish, between loading, driving, unloading, paddling, reloading, driving back and unloading.

And then you want me to what? Cook a good meal? HA! Last week I bought a rack of ribs thinking I would smoke it a day or so later. Needless to say it went in the freezer after a few days and I just de-thawed it to smoke it tonight when I realized I would be lucky if I got to do it by Thursday!

Another lesson I have learned is that a part of training is rest, which I didn't know how little I actually get. Unfortunately my best buddy pup Mufasa is getting up in his years and cant hold his bladder as he used to. This results in me having to get up at least 2-3 times a night to let him in the back yard. More in a zombie mode than not, but the nights he does sleep (and so do I) there is a noticeable difference in how I feel.

So here I sit..and I struggle with days like yesterday. I was exhausted from the weekend of paddling and surfing for about 12 hours. But the wind was cranking from the South, due to a tropical storm. A perfect chance to practice my downwind skills. But two weeks ago I booked a massage, which are very hard to get afternoons where I go. So I fought with myself ALL day on whether to take a day off to get a massage or to paddle. Unfortunately my after work activities only equal to one thing or another. There is never enough time for both. It wasn't until about 1 hour before I was going to get out of work that I decided to cancel my massage. My whole body cursed me. My arms have been exhausted to the point of losing grip lately, and I sit here and decide to go paddle 6 miles instead (although my original plan was 15)? Luckily I have the best boyfriend in the world, who is an amazing downwind paddler, and agreed to join me and pushed me to a great workout and making my missed massage a thing of the past :) (yes he won, but I swear it was only because I fell on my wave in..)

And then there was this morning. I usually run on Tuesdays at crossfit at 6. But I woke up and knew I needed off. So instead? I ate, walked the dog and vacuumed and mopped the house at 6am! WHO DOES THAT???????? (someone who owns a house and doesn't want to live in a mess pile) So...How is my training going, you ask? Just about as good as I can get it. Yes, I do miss a lot of things planned on my schedule because unfortunately there sometimes isn't enough time to go to the gym at least twice a week, paddle 4-6 times a week and run 2-3 times a week, coach special Olympics, take care of a house and bills, do other life things that happen, not neglect my loved ones, plan our Sunshine SUP Series, etc etc etc. Yes I thought I would be able to do it all easily and still be able to function in my other life commitments. Yes I should be a lot faster and more ripped that I have gotten the last few months if I would have had time to follow my schedule to a T.

But the one thing I have learned from this all so far is acceptance. I accept the fact that I cant do everything. As much as I'd love to know my full potential, I accept the challenges that I will face to try to even attempt to ever get there. I accept the fact that I'm doing the best that I can with the time that I am given to train for this race that I have always dreamed of doing. And while my SUP times have not increased as quickly as I thought they would because the amount of time I would need to train to make them do so is out of the question, I accept the fact that I may not be the fastest paddler, and there are plenty of times I get beat and that's ok. I accept that I will get there eventually, it just might take me longer than others. I accept the fact that the challenge that stands in front of me scares me at times because I just wish I could quit everything for a little and give it my all, so I can go out there and rock it like I know I could, I will still push as much as I can to finish this beast of a thing that will be happening in 54 days.

And no matter what...I WILL COOK THESE DAMN RIBS this week.