About two months ago, I was laying in bed reflecting on the past year and a single word came to mind, “commit.” In this moment, I felt the weight of this word deep in my spirit. Little did I know “commit” would become my anthem for 2019.
This realization that it was time to go “all-in” on pursuing my dreams and goals, came just days before my grandfather, the patriarch and foundation of our family, passed away. “Commit.” It came days before I told work it was time for me to leave. “Commit.” It came days before people closest to me began questioning my decision to leave a stable job in government to ‘pursue a hobby’. “Commit.”
This word was seared in my soul right before the world offered every reason to back out and say, “right now is not the right time.”
Truth is that the time is never right enough to pursue a dream. There will always be countless reasons to stay comfortable, many of which come back to family obligations, time commitment, finances, and the inherent risk of uncertainty. However, sacrificing a dream for comfort leaves the heart yearning and craving for what it was designed to do. It creates discord in the spirit, leaving the soul in a sort of purgatory, or stuck between a vision of what could be and a reality of living less than which it was created.
For me, since I was a child, I’ve dreamed of being a professional athlete and using this as a platform to build others up and help them become alive in living their life’s calling. Triathlon has given me this opportunity, as well as the countless people that have supported and believed in my over the past couple years.
The past two years have been a wild journey of setting big goals and working hard to achieve them. In 2017, my first year racing triathlons, I set out to earn my pro license. In 2018, my first year competing as a pro, I set out to qualify for and complete in the IM70.3 World Championships. During both of these years, I worked full-time for a local public health department, which required 8 to 10 hours a week of commuting from Branson (home) to Springfield. This left an average of 15 hours a week for training and little to no time for recovery (naps in the back of the Subaru and on the concrete floor of my office count very little towards recovery!).
I have more to give to the sport and I’m committed to being the best I can be. This means increasing training, improving recovery, and seeking opportunities to give back to the triathlon community and share knowledge from the experience. The feelings are mixed, from sheer terror to unbridled excitement. I don’t have all the answers on what it will look like. Yet, I do know that I’ll be eating lots of rice and beans while figuring out how to make ends meet! But if rice and beans is what it takes to fully embrace my calling, sign me up!
Galatians 6:9 “Let us not lose heart in doing what is good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.”