Self-acceptance is easy for some, but very difficult for others. As athletes, we often want to pursue becoming faster, stronger, fitter, healthier, wiser…the list goes on and on. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in our pursuit that we forget why we ever got started. For most of us, we began our athletic career because we were passionate for the sport and fell in love with the training and competing. I know I get an awesome feeling of accomplishment when my times get faster, power gets stronger and weights get heavier.
Lately, though I have been struggling with my athletic self-acceptance because I am not at the level of fitness I feel is needed. In two weeks, I will be competing at Tri Fort Worth 70.3 Triathlon and feel as though it is not going to be the performance I hoped for. (For non-triathlete individuals a 70.3 triathlon consists of 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike ride and 13.1 mile run.) Training levels have not been optimal ever since March 21st of this year. That day marks the first day of competing for the title of Woman of the Year for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The campaign is a 10 week fundraiser where 16 people compete against each other to raise the most money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. I have a goal of raising $100,000 in just 10 weeks. This campaign is like having a second full time job. It has been an amazing journey so far and I know it is all worth it in the end, but WOW is it exhausting and time consuming. June 2nd is the last day of the campaign. When June 3rd comes around, I want to look back and have no regrets! As a result of investing the necessary time into this campaign, triathlon training has had to take the back burner. This season, when I struggle with self-acceptance, it has been important to remember that raising money for cancer research is far more important than competing in a triathlon.
Once the campaign is over, the focus will be on other various half Ironman and Olympic races I have lined up. When this year comes to an end I want to ensure that, even though my athletic performance may be less than what I hoped for, my self-acceptance is not impacted. I do not want to settle in my race expectations, but rather accept where I am in the journey of my athletic career and continue to pursue bettering myself every race and every year. Self-worth cannot be solely related to the pursuit of athletic greatness…it has to be found from within and in relation to all the other positive aspects of life we are participating in; such as fundraisers to cure cancer. If you would like to learn more about the campaign, check out my website by clicking HERE.