May 6, 2015
I’m a firm believer that you should always love what you do – whether that’s work, play, whatever. If you love what you do, it will ignite you and excite you. You can always see it in people’s eyes, it beams from them like sunshine if they’ve found their passion in life.
Ever since taking part in my first triathlon – almost exactly 10 years ago – this is how I’ve felt about this mad endurance sport to which so many of us are addicted. After years as a relatively sedentary journalist, it breathed new life and passion into me and proceeded to change the course of my life (dark UK newsroom to sunny SoCal).
But somewhere along the way recently, it had stopped being fun, the things I loved about it were overshadowed, the fire that had always fuelled me was dampened, if there at all. I wondered if it might ever come back. I know it’s something a lot of athletes encounter at various times in their racing careers. It was breaking my heart.
And last weekend at 70.3 Texas, I can tell you – the good times came rolling back. I loved every aspect of racing again. I loved being out there, I loved the cut and thrust of racing, I loved the pain, the crowds, the energy, the strategy. And while loving it all, I actually raced pretty well too, finishing third and posting the fastest bike split.
I felt elated after the race, just like I did after that very first one a decade ago – not because I was on the podium or because I’d performed well, but because I’d fallen back in love with a sport that had had me at hello.
How did I do it? Well, I can’t give away all my secrets, can I?! But suffice to say it’s the same ingredients that make a lot of things in life: great friends, good changes, self-belief, gut instinct.