Saturday, October 24, 2015

Part 1: Not according to the plan

My #1 favorite...even more than cookies and pizza!

It’s the off season and you may need some extra reading material for all your free time…well here you go… my 4 part blog series.  I’ve been jotting notes for months and have slowly compiled them.    

5 of my favorite people!

                         My disclaimer...These are my beliefs, my philosophies, my experiences, my truths… I am not saying they are your truths or your beliefs or the training principles you should follow.   These are just what I believe to be true and I believe everybody has their own journey and their own path to whatever their finish line may be in sport or in life.

If there is one tidbit of something I have done that could help you or someone out there in their journey then please take “it” with you, but know that this is my crazy puzzle and slowly I am putting it together.  However, my finished puzzle seems to keep changing on me.  I’m learning more each day about who I really am and how much I can handle along with seeing the true colors of others around me.  No matter the struggles, failures, and disappointments on the race course or in our daily life…it is those struggles which shape who we are…more so than our triumphs.   

Part 1
What happened? 

(FYI…Part 1 doesn’t have much to do with triathlon or training)

I was signed up for a lot of big races in a short period of time with big goals.  It was going to be an epic year. 2015. I had 4 big races on my calendar and was ready to get some serious training in along with graduate with my master’s degree.  You know…typically Michelle Andres style.  How much can I pile on my plate?

IM Canada – with a goal to qualify for Kona 2015
IM Wisconsin – with a goal to qualify for Kona 2016 and set a new CR
Worlds in Chicago – Have funJ
Kona 2015 – go as fast as I can

Then spring came and I bailed on everything…Canceled out of my races, sold my race wheels, bike box, and thought about selling my bike. Thankfully I didn’t sell Black Beauty at that time!

So why did I bail?

I feel I need to tell the “before” story to give the true picture of how sweet the victory at IM Wisconsin was for me.  Lee and I had an opportunity in front of us at the start of 2015.  It was an opportunity Lee had been working his whole adult life for and one we had always planned together.  It was part of our “plan” since we were 18. Over the last 20 years there were times when we thought it may never happen, but now here it was…Lee’s dream was happening.  He has always been 100% supportive of the dreams I have had in sport and now it was finally my turn to get to be there to support him.  I was 100% all in! I was ready to give everything I could to take on a new business venture with Lee. Something we have always wanted to do...even before kids or marriage.

Super long story short….
Sometimes we think we know where we are headed only to find out the path was actually a dead end. No business deal.

At that point, as hard as it was, I made a decision to walk myself back to the Y in my journey and head in the other direction.  Not away from Lee, but away from negativity.

Life is short.  We all need to do what you love and follow our passions along with being true to ourselves. Sometimes when we hit those dead ends and bumps in the road we think it's the end of the world.  Well anyway I did at that moment, but it's THOSE hard times that build our character. It's those moments when things are hard…really hard…and we decide how we are going to proceed with life.  It’s the moment when a person can find the champion inside and rise to the occasion. 

I have grown more in this last year of my life and learned more about myself and the people around me than any other year I can remember.  Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us. 

It took me a couple of months to figure things out and in reality “it”/life is never really figured out.  We are constantly changing and growing.  Being able to accept change and grow from it is a life skill many adults still haven’t learned.  It wasn’t until after the 4th of July the thought about actually completing, not racing, IM Wisconsin started floating around my head.  There was very little biking or running and I never went to the pool.  I was 20 pounds over my racing weight and the thought of just being able to finish IM Wisconsin in 9 weeks with all my triathlon friends made me smile.   
My thought when I stepped on the scale...9 wks out

So, as a family we all decided we were “all in” for IM Wisconsin.  This time around it was going to look different.  Evenings and weekends were open for family stuff.  Training was going to be compacted to a few hours each day.  I’ve always believed the best way to parent is through our actions more so than our words.  I want my boys to the value the importance of having a goal and working hard for it.  I want them to know their finish line is in their hands and with some self-sacrifice and hard work anything is possible. 

There are plenty of things I have no clue on, but one thing I know for sure... I'm a good person. 

Coming soon...
Part 2: Training and dropping 20 pounds in 9 weeks - Yikes!
Part 3: IM Champion...Did that really happen?
Part 4: The Next Adventures for Team Andres

Camping Trip summer 2015

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