Thursday, July 28, 2011

Racing Beyond Self...

In Chris McCormack's excellent book, I'm Here to Win, Macca has a chapter titled "Racing for My Mother." In it, he talks about losing his mom to cancer in a scant six weeks; the misery of trying to move forward, being lost, and then realizing the rest of the world is passing him by. Instead of wallowing in sadness, Macca instead battles forward, racing in her honor (putting the number of days she lived, 19455, on his singlet), and establishing the MaccaNOW Foundation.

The chapter reflects a fair bit of my own racing, and why I got into the sport. There is something to be said for racing for something greater than yourself. But at the same time, I don't necessarily race for something greater than myself; those people are part of who I am.

With that in mind, every race I go forward with, I'll have my Garmin on, my RoadID, a race ID bracelet if required, and then one with the following initials, in honor of the people who have helped make me who I am today.

PTB--Peter Booty: my father-in-law, whose story lines up with the chapter in I'm Here to Win that I had to put the book down for a good hour while I finished bawling. His work ethic, dedication to family, and love of the outdoors inspires me every day. It is also for him that I wear the frog green and black of The Sustainable Athlete team kits, and why my bike is named Kermit.

DCT--Dale Thompson: my uncle, who I lost quite recently. His battle with addiction, and personal demons, and the fact that he held on as long as he did, motivate me. I can't think of how hard things were for him, and it puts every little thing I deal with in perspective for me.

THx2--Terry and Tom Heisler: my parents. Both bust their asses, every day, for everything. They've always put my best interests to heart. Although I'd never tell them that, face to face. They are my parents, after all, so it's my job to be a pain in their respective behinds. But without them, I wouldn't know what hard work is. I wouldn't know pushing through things, no matter how hard they may be. They've taught me the benefit of working to your end goal. It makes it so much more worth it.

HBH--Hannah Booty Heisler: my loving wife, who I have the pleasure of waking up to every day. She is an absolute treasure, and I am incredibly lucky to have her presence in my life.

Of course, there's hundreds of others that I could include, like my siblings; in-laws; extended family; friends; co-workers; etc. But there's not enough room! (After all, we have to be aero while wearing this, too.) But when the going gets tough, I can simply remind myself of who helped me get to where I am now, and where I plan to go.

Programming Note: You may have noticed an inherent lack of product reviews here on CTB. That's because I've been busy hosting Maine Running Company's Tech Talk, a video product review series. Check it out there for some reviews of the Nike GPS Sportwatch, the Nineteen and Orca wetsuit lines, the New Balance 890, and running hydration options.

Upcoming posts here on Crashing the Boards will feature the long-awaited Orca Sonar review, the Pearl Izumi Tri Fly III cycling shoe review, and a talk about my expected path to becoming a USAT-certified coach.

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