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Thursday, January 22, 2009


While thinking about triathlon a couple thoughts came up. last season it never hit me that I was a "professional". Sport just stayed "fun". Then, the thought that my job each day is to swim, bike, run came into mind. Three things that used to be my "outlet" my "escape" my "time away from the real world" were now three things I "have" to do. Thankfully I enjoy them, a lot. All of this turned into too much thinking for me...

When I get my mind in mess I grab a surf magazine and by the time I finish reading it my mind is clear, don't ask me how or why, but most problems are always solved by the time I finish the magazine...

This months interview was with Bruce Irons (one of my favorite surfers). He has always been a good surfer, never won a world title and somewhat in the shadow of his older brother who HAS won a world title. Over the years he has become one of the best surfers. Anyways, his interview was EXACTLY what I am going through! His "outlet" became his career. Something that was always so fun is something that pays the bills and puts food on the table (at least that's the plan most of the time).

The gist of his interview was how he is learning to keep the very thing he loves as something he loves and at the same time recognize that it is a "job" and he has to learn to do it as his "job". Forgive me as I stumble to explain the interview... pretty much, there is this fine line that you create as a professional athlete where you get to enjoy your profession (because it is something you love) but you also have to do it beyond the level of something you just enjoy doing.

Today... I made my run and my bike my "job". Rather than going for my run and riding my bike I went to work...

I took my run as serious as possible (hit heart rates, fueled properly, thought about things like form and pacing), then I rode my bike as if it was my office (gotta confess, my office has a nice view).

For 2009 I am going to borrow Bruce Irons plan, to let triathlon become my "labor of love" .

http://www.theage.com.au/ffximage/2007/05/01/js01srf_wipeout_wideweb__470x317,0.jpg

Looks like Bruce had a fun day at the office...


.



22 Comments:

Blogger Jennifer Harrison said...

Very interesting. You know, while in Tucson training with Spencer this past weekend...he is the perfect PRO...wakes up, takes a shower (!), cleans his bikes, has absolutely spotless equipment, eats his same training/race meal at the same time, trains - naps, eats well.....he told me it is his "job" and he doesn't know how else to do it....I was giving him crap for taking a shower before we rode. BUT, that is the truth...treats it like HE IS GOING TO "HIS" office everyday.....! Good luck! :)

January 22, 2009 at 2:49 PM

 
Blogger t-odd said...

I am looking for a new job. Where do I apply?

January 22, 2009 at 3:15 PM

 
Blogger Natalie said...

First of all...that wave freaks me out. That is just amazing and awe inspiring to see such a sheer force of power!

Bree, I think you're on your way to having a stellar year. I hope that you always enjoy your job and find joy in it!

January 22, 2009 at 3:30 PM

 
Blogger Coach Liz said...

I will second that comment on the wave. That is freaky huge.

Isn't is nice that your job will never go through downsizing or lay-off's? Here is to an amazing 2009 race season.

January 22, 2009 at 5:39 PM

 
Blogger Eileen Swanson said...

Love this! Yes this is it, your job and you do love it, PLUS, super bonus! Keep up the great work and keep living your dream job and doing it great!

January 22, 2009 at 5:45 PM

 
Blogger MJ said...

Remember that boardgame Life?

I don't recall how you won it, but making a living doing what you love should have been a part of winning.

And that must have been a painful day at the office for Bruce...

Cheers,

January 22, 2009 at 9:23 PM

 
Blogger ADC said...

It's great that you are thinking that way so early in the season. Keep up the good work Bree. I can't wait to follow you in Kona in October.

January 22, 2009 at 11:47 PM

 
Blogger Ordinarylife said...

Yikes - that wave does not look like fun to me....... That looks like your boss coming down on you from a dizzy height.

Good luck with this year, at least you know your job is not going to be boring!

January 23, 2009 at 2:24 AM

 
Blogger Bruce Stewart (施樸樂) (ブルース・スチュワート) said...

When I was in high school I dreamed of playing golf all day as my career, but then I later thought it might be too boring (quite apart from the fact that I wasn't really that good at it). So now I go for my swim, do some work overlooking the pool, and then return home by bike to eat and do more work in nice surroundings. So I agree with you that you can have a fun day at the office and plenty of mental stimulation without ever being anywhere near one.

January 23, 2009 at 2:33 AM

 
Blogger Wes said...

I love my job. I couldn't imagine doing anything else. It's fun getting paid to do something you want to do anyways. Why does it have to turn into work?

January 23, 2009 at 3:34 AM

 
Blogger Kathleen @ ForgingAhead said...

That's great insight Bree! I love that surfing magazine is your zen place...that's so cool.

January 23, 2009 at 3:56 AM

 
Blogger Cricket said...

Thanks for the picture of the "handsome" guy to get my friday started. Ha! Ha!
I too have a feeling that this is your year...you've matured into a working pro and you can see what has to be done and how to do it!
I'd wish ya luck- but that's not what you need- but you are always in our prayers... We Love You!
The Richau's

January 23, 2009 at 4:52 AM

 
Blogger Mel said...

I see WHY he is your fav:) Bree you have the best job...one that you LOVE...it is going to be a good year for you with lots of bonuses:) get to work!!!

January 23, 2009 at 5:08 AM

 
Blogger ShirleyPerly said...

Interesting thoughts. When I was young, I used to want to get paid for doing what I loved to do. Then I realized that I was a workaholic and I was living to work instead of vice versa. Hold those past-times close!

January 23, 2009 at 5:11 AM

 
Blogger Laura said...

Wow, what an amazing and intimidating wave! Much harder than anything I've done at my office recently! When Joy and I come to Hawaii (she for IM, me as a spectator) will you teach us how to surf? Maybe not on waves like that. Well, not at first anyway. Hahaha.

January 23, 2009 at 5:16 AM

 
Blogger Speed Racer said...

Wanna switch jobs for a few months?!

I heard an interview with Mark Allen this week where he said something very similar. He said something like (and I'm going to botch this up), "There isn't a single professional triathlete who doesn't love what they do, because the training's too hard a job to do if you don't love it." Only he said it better than that.

Thanks for giving the rest of us mere mortals something to fantasize about while we're in OUR offices pretending to be doing OUR jobs.

January 23, 2009 at 8:19 AM

 
Blogger Marit Chrislock-Lauterbach said...

Really great post Bree! I learn so much from you - and Jen's comment was really interesting. Neat to see what makes the successful pros tick, what makes them successful athletes! You're going to have a stellar year!

WOW - LOVE the wave! :)

January 23, 2009 at 9:37 AM

 
Blogger Charisa said...

Very cool that you understand the importance of keeping your "job" also "fun". Can't wait to see what the year holds!

January 23, 2009 at 11:37 AM

 
Blogger Shawn and Tracy said...

Nicely said Bree I know 2009 is going to be full of promotions for you ;-)
Tracy

January 25, 2009 at 12:00 PM

 
Blogger L1z4 said...

How long is the average female, pro triathlete's career?

January 25, 2009 at 12:08 PM

 
Blogger BreeWee said...

L1Z4, not sure if you check back, just tried to respond to you but I can't pull up your blog from your profile page...

hmm, good question, pretty much till you burn out, blow up your body, or just get too slow to make any money.

There are a ton of incredible pro women in there late 30's early 40's. Some of them have been racing 20 years. There are also a lot of girls in their late 20's and early 30's that have been racing 14 years... so it just depends on the woman...

January 25, 2009 at 12:16 PM

 
Blogger L1z4 said...

Thanks Bree! I don't have a blog yet, but someday... someday. Yeah, ok that makes sense. I guess you can pretty much burn out in any career, come to think of it. May as well be the one you love! ;-)

I remember the woman who won gold for Marathon in Beijing was 38, and she just kicked all the young one's butt! That was good. I enjoyed that. Now that you mention it there is the female triathlete in Canada, Lisa Bentley, who is quite an inspiration.

January 26, 2009 at 9:28 AM

 

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