I’m not sure I’m a triathlete yet.
This past weekend, I went camping and hiking with my dad, my 5yr old son, my brother, and my two nephews.
A family that plays together stays thin together.
I enjoy hiking a ton. Its super fun to walk out in nature. Take in all the bugs, animals, and beautiful foliage. (okay bugs are so fun if they’re mosquitos.) We drove 3 hours away so we can endure a little bit of topography during our hike. Just the fact that we got to see views is awesome considering Illinois is a flat geologic basin (although, we benefit by great ground water). The activeness of topography was one characteristic of living in Montana or Colorado that I really miss.
My wife and I try to encourage our kids to be active. We go for walks, we play at the park, we’ll play tag inside, dance, swim, soccer, baseball, basketball.
By taking my son hiking and camping, he gets to use his body and have fun doing it. Who doesn’t like climbing boulder-sized rocks along a lakefront? That’s better than a jungle gym if you ask me.
When I was growing up, my mom and my dad always provided ample opportunity for me to have fun in action. We camped, we walked, we played sports. Some of these I did alone, some of these we did as a family. I really thank them for those opportunities. Of course, they are fond memories, but it also helped me to realize that moving my body is Fun! Exercise can be fun. It doesn’t have to be running on a treadmill that goes nowhere. It doesn’t have to be lifting weights with no action. Instead, I can carry the weight of a backpack while hiking through a forest or up a mountain.
Why do I say I’m not sure I’m a triathlete?
I mean I like biking, and I like swimming, and I guess if you twist my arm, I don’t mind running (too much). I had a great time with my past Triathlon experience. The race really motivated my exercise. However, This past Sunday where we were at in WI, it was 50 some degrees. It was rainy. The campground we were at held a triathlon. I was kind of excited and wanted to go see the participants. Yet, since it was so relatively cold and so wet, I was just happy to take down my tent without getting soaked.
I could not imagine getting up early to set up my transition area in a wet cold morning much less jumping in a cold lake, and then doing a bike and run afterwards. Those people are Triathletes. I’m not quite there yet. I’m not saying I won’t do another triathlon or another race. I’m not committing either way. However, on that cold morning, I had no desire to be out on there with them.
You know what? That’s okay. Everyone is different. We have to find exercises that we like. We have to learn how to naturally include more movement in our day to day activities in addition to the more strenuous endurance activities.
Races are great motivators, but they’re not the only way. Sure, I think races are good for me to motivate my exercise schedule. You may be different. What exercise do you love? That’s what matters when action in general becomes immutable in life!