So I was asked on Saturday "Why are you doing a 1/2 Ironman? Why swim 1.2 miles, cycle 56 miles then run 13.1 miles?" The answer came tumbling out of my mouth with a clarity that surprised me. It went something like this ...
"I am nearly 46, and it can feel like 'this is it for me'. In my 20's it was all ahead of me (marriage, kids, home ownership, that great job). In my 30's I was in the thick of it and just trying to keep up (first years of marriage, young kids, busy job then church plant).
Now in mid 40's, my career / financial landscape seem pretty fixed and we aren't planning to have any more kids or move house. I am increasingly noticing what my peers have/haven't achieved and do/don't have, for good & bad.
Essentially I have arrived at mid life healthy, happy and VERY clappy for Jesus. I have a Proverbs 31 wife, 3 great kids and a job I passionately believe in. But these in themselves are not the end, they are precious foundations to build upon.
Something within me longs to know that what's ahead will have be as significant as what's gone before. I feel I have more to offer than ever before and I can't stomach the idea of simply holding ground for the next 20 years.
I still have so much drive & zeal & energy ... probably more than RFC can handle right now without me blowing her up/wearing her out! Channeling this energy into endurance racing makes perfect sense, for the short term at least.
Will I be doing Triathlon into my mid 50's? Maybe.
Will I be married to Liz, trying to be better father and leading RFC will zeal when I am 56? YES, by God's grace.
And to do that I need to keep managing my Mid Life 'this is it for me' Crisis."
As I said, my clarity surprised me!