When I was 40, I replaced my french-fry addiction with running. I trained for 2 months to run my first 5k. I ran the 3.2 miles without stopping…it was one the greatest highlights of my life. Training with my running group was something that I had come to look forward to 3 times a week, but now that I had run a 5k, I needed another goal…something else to put on my ‘bucket list’. I was clearly addicted to the feeling of crossing the finish line. Hearing those cheers of support and admiration created a euphoria that I wanted to experience again and again.
Then POW! it hit me. I wanted to compete in a triathlon, to be more specific a Super Sprint Triathlon? I would have to swim 250 meters, road bike 9 miles and run 2 miles consecutively. Oh Yeah!! I can bike, I can run, wait…I can’t swim. I was feeling deflated…I was 40 years old and couldn’t swim. Not only could I NOT swim, I almost drowned in Cabo San Lucas last year while ‘swimming’ with the dolphins. Now I was actually a bit afraid of the water, but my drive to compete soon won out and I started the next leg of my journey.
So I put on my big girl panties and found a swim coach. This morning as I sat on the edge of the pool splashing my swim flippers in the cool water, I couldn’t help but think how far I had come. As my coach shouted “Gilmore lets go!” I eased into the water and began my warm up with no hesitation or fear, and I can’t help but feel just a little bit invincible.
My coach and team members call me STARFISH, they say if I get one limb cut off, then another grows in its place. After this past year, I’m inclined to agree with them. One of these days really soon, when someone asks me what I do for fun, I’m going to be able to say “I’m triathlete”. I’ve got goosebumps already!!
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