Wednesday, May 14, 2014

No, I Don't Want to Come Out and Play....

I was on Facebook today and a friend posted a link to this blog: Once We Become Parents We Don't Want to Hang Out with you Anymore (But Not for the Reasons You Think) And while I'm single, never married, and don't have kids; I still tend to click on these types of posts.

As I was reading it, it dawned on me....

Now that I'm Training for a Long Distance Triathlon I Don't Want to Hang Out with you Anymore (But Not for the Reasons You Think).

I am not mocking Christine Skoutelas. I am COMPLETELY identifying with what she says, just in a different way.

***these opinions are mine and mine alone and it should be noted that I am in complete awe of those who train and have families. I can't even handle a dog.***

She says:
1. The kid's schedule is more important than one would think.
I say:
1. My training schedule is more important than you think. A group is meeting for an open water swim. It's just not smart to go swim in a lake or a river or an ocean by yourself so I swim when others do. I might be able to move my run around because running I can do before or after the sun rises/sets, but my bike, no, my bike needs to happen when the sun is up. I'm either smart or chicken, either way, that's my self-imposed rule. I could half-ass my training, but then there is no way I'm going to get to enjoy the race.

A pretty typical looking 3 weeks of training workouts.

She says:
2. Kids put their parents on a schedule of their own.
I say:
2. Tri training makes me schedule everything else. It isn't just the training that takes time, but getting ready for the training. Getting up early enough to eat. Prepping my bike for a long ride. Driving to where it is that I'm going to swim, bike or run. All of that has to be scheduled. Without having another human in the house to support me, EVERYTHING gets scheduled including when I cook my food for the week, when I'm doing laundry, when I can clean up the place. Last week it said I trained for about 8.5 hours. That was just the time I was actively in motion, not rest time on the ride, or travel time to get there, or time to clean up after. Captain Wonderful said that he didn't like that I planned social events a week ahead., lacrosse and tri training, if I wanted to see him, I HAD to schedule it.

She says:
3. We like hanging out with our kids.
I say:
3. I like training. Well, not always, but usually. It might be hard and it might be exhausting, but the sense of accomplishment I get when I finish a tough workout is better than any drug I've ever done. JUST KIDDING MOM!!! I've never done drugs. A great swim, a strong bike, a fast run...I can be buzzing for hours! I can relive it over and over and over again....(probably not a good day to call, because you WILL hear about.)

Feeling pretty happy with a 45 mile ride and 5k run.
She says:
4. "Just bring the kids" is an option.
I say
4. "Just come over after" is an option. Except it isn't. I'm exhausted after a long workout. Completely and utterly wiped out after an almost 60 mile ride. I'm amazed at my friends who are training for 70.3s and 140.6s that have families and have to continue to function after a long weekend workout. I need a nap. I'd love to come visit, but I'm probably going to fall asleep on your couch mid sentence.

Sitting in the car after my 60 mile ride.

She says:
5. Seemingly benign household chores suddenly seem to consume our lives.
I say:
5. Seemingly benign household chores suddenly seem to consume my life. I'm sorry, but I can't hang out Sunday night. Sunday is when I cook for the week. Yes, the entire week. I'm trying to get slimmer, toner, healthier, etc. that requires planning. And oh the never ends. I'm just one person and the laundry is crazy! Remember how I just said I cook for the week? It gets stored in plastic-ware. That stuff doesn't wash itself.

Lacrosse is almost over, I promise future roomie to keep the sink clear.
She says:
6. Kids go to sleep pretty damn early.
I say:
6. I need to go to sleep pretty damn early. Really, I do. My alarm goes off at 5am and I don't stop moving from that point forward. While I'm not sure if I would get in trouble for taking a nap at work, I hear that sort of behavior is frowned upon. If you know me then you know I'm no fun when I'm tired. Crab@ss party of one, your table is ready.

She says:
7. Leisure time is so limited that we tend to spend it on ourselves (often by ourselves).
I say:
7. Rest days are sacred. I get 1-2 days off from training a week. Coach insists and I have learned to love them. I get to sleep till 7:30 if it is a work day or until I wake up if it is a weekend day. If it is a workday, then that is my one night to meet up with a friend or (it could happen) a date. On the weekend I'm still trying to set up my home. Last Saturday I think was spent furniture shopping, but at this point it might have been 2 Saturdays ago as I can't remember. If I'm off on Saturday, that means a long workout on Sunday. No, I can't go see a 10pm movie with you or breathe in smoke at a bar or go out for a few drinks or spend the evening walking about in heels. I need to go to sleep early so I can go meet up with other crazy friends who will ride into the middle of no where with me.

I finally have a real couch to sit on. A first since 'the fire'.

She says:
8. Sometimes we just need to idly linger.
I say:
8. Sometimes I just need to idly linger. I run a pretty hectic schedule which, truth be told, is about to come to a grinding halt as lacrosse season ends on Saturday. With as packed as I tend to keep my schedule sometimes I just need quality time with my couch. I don't want to talk to anyone. I don't want to think. I just want to watch television. You are always welcome to come sit on the couch and watch TV with me, as long as you understand that conversation may be limited. It's dawned on me recently that I think this endurance training is turning me into an introvert. (more on this another time)

As I mentioned in a past post about birds of a feather and surrounding myself with like-minded and like-goaled people, I truly adore my non-tri friends. I get to do things with them that I don't do with my tri friends. I ask my tri friends to swim, bike or run. With my non tri friends I get to see a movie or go shopping, or things just non-tri related.

Just this afternoon I was speaking with a triathlon friend and we talked about the fact that we spend so much time thinking about or participating in tri-training, it always creeps into conversation. I often wonder if I'm boring my non-tri friends or over sharing with them. I know my brother has no interest in hearing about my issues with finding the correct saddle. In this conversation this afternoon, we discussed GI issues and things that impact when we run. These topics are not usual parts of conversation in everyday life (unless you are an endurance athlete). One date asked me what else I like to do besides train and I listed lots of things and then said, when I have the availability.

Here's the blunt truth:
Sometimes, the only time and energy I have to catch up with you, is if you are on a bike or run with  me. It isn't that I love my non tri friends any less. It isn't that I no longer like them because they didn't drink the same Kool-Aid I did. It is just that there are only 24 hours in a day and 7 days in week. I don't want another hour in the day, because I know I would just cram something else in.


  1. I love this a thousand times over!

  2. GREAT, GREAT blog post! LOVE it!!!

    Now, consider my predicament! I do have kids, 11 y/o and 16 y/o daughters. I'm amazed at the looks I get when I resist driving one of them to yet the third birthday party THAT WEEKEND! All because I want to get my long ride in. Seriously? I would think that actually being present in the home, loving, and providing WAY MORE than just the basics (cellphones, tablets, laptops, vacations, dining out, etc.) would qualify me for an award?! Nope, not if I start getting an attitude about that third birthday party! I should probably be charged with neglect?!

    And for the record and your entertainment, the attitude doesn't usually come from my kids, but other parents!

    I'm all about providing for my kids as best as I can, but I am a VERY firm believer that one shouldn't sacrifice their own happiness to try and make everyone else happy. You've heard the saying, "You can't love anyone else if you don't love yourself!"? I believe that and that it applies to happiness as well. You have to be happy to spread happiness.

    So, as a family, we ALL sacrifice from time to time to help each other fulfill our dreams! It's that simple. And this year, as I progress towards my goal of becoming an IRONMAN, my family will be asked to sacrifice a little bit. And when my daughters come to me, asking me to pay for their weddings, we'll have a discussion about whether their being without Dad for a few Sunday mornings while he was out on long rides is as big a sacrifice as those checks I'll be writing?! LOL!

    (DISCLAIMER: NO... I am not trying to imply that money is more important than family time. I think you know where I'm coming from?! LOL!)

    1. I don't know how you juggle it all, I even passed on getting a dog recently!