I think I’ve written about this before (and in fact already used the title I was going to). Driving back on Memorial Day, I was thinking as I drove through the southern hills of New Hampshire about how I didn’t have to prove anything to anyone else anymore. It was a very freeing thought at the time. Everybody I love and who loves me expects nothing more from me. They are proud when I achieve, but they have no Everests for me to climb. The mountains I summit are my own.
Initially, triathlon was a bit of a way to prove myself to someone else.
My motivation has been lacking this year. You could say it’s because I was distracted by all of the events that happened starting with the hives, but, if anything, those things should make me hungrier to get training. And yet, I find myself struggling with motivation. Bailing on workouts. Forgetting obvious stuff for races. Being distracted at races. Perhaps every other season I had a specific goal in mind: last year, beat my time at Wildflower (success, though it still felt like a failure), break 11 at the IM distance (failure), qualify for Boston (massive success). This year, when filling out a form for Steve, I struggled to come up with goals. And I think the lack of a concrete goal has been hurting my motivation. Yes, I’d like to go 4:40 in a half. I’d like to qualify for NYC under the new qualifying standards. I’d still like to go sub-11 (but I don’t want to do IM volume training this year). I think those are doable (not this year, but maybe next). Those are all a long way out, so maintaining motivation is difficult. And surely that’s not the only answer. Am I not racing enough this year (doubtful, but maybe)?
I don’t expect motivation to come from anyone else but myself. Perhaps it’s the weight of everything that’s happened since the hives and this will all pass. In fact, I’m sure it will. I’ll figure things out. I will put mountains in my path, and I will climb them. Some will be too difficult and I’ll fall and I’ll fail. I’ve accepted that.
What motivates you? When you’ve achieved your goals, do you just pick loftier ones? Or do you switch them up completely?