Monday, November 26, 2007

Tri-ing for FUN!

I took this photo of Shanna at the finish line of Ultraman yesterday... she held that position for what seemed like 5 minutes-just laughing and smiling and enjoying triathlon.Living in Kona I was fortunate enough to watch Shanna Armstrong as she raced around the island of Hawaii during the Ultraman. (I think it's a really CRAZY event- but I once thought that about Ironman too). I learned something from watching her though...

After Ironman I was getting all sorts of pressure and opinions that I should maybe think about jumping to race pro with the "big girls". My most common response was that I am not there yet-mentally. I race for fun. I LOVE triathlon and the "fun" of it-I know most triathletes love the fun- but the really good ones have that mental thing going for them too. I am the triathlete that laughs at myself because I have my swim suit riding up my butt on the bike (but refuse to race in bike shorts). I am the one that usually shouts & cheers across the road to Rachel Ross & Amy Bennet at every race we do together (even though they are my biggest competition on the island). I hi-five the kids, still ask for autographs from the pros and just can't toe the start line with that "I am AWESOME" look that a lot of pros have. Believe me, I wish I had that. I admire the women who get to the start and look confident and focused and determined to get to the finish first.

Back to Shanna... this women taught me something... YOU CAN HAVE ALL SORTS OF CRAZY FUN! She was cheering for her competitors, wishing them well, encouraging them, and the HIGHLIGHT... she has a ton of toys with her on race day! Yes, little monkeys, squeaky things, things to keep her race fun and worth laughing about. It was really refreshing.

I know that every athlete has what works for them... maybe focused and quiet, maybe loud and boastful, even friendly & encouraging. After watching Shanna I realized that it is perfectly fine to toe the line with a big smile, wave like you are in a parade, and then pull out toys to make yourself (and others) laugh. I think that saying, "The person having the most fun wins" was written for Shanna yesterday!

Check Shanna out : Shanna Armstrong

8 comments:

Terra said...

Bree- You will know when it is time to my the jump. Know that it can still be fun racing pro- just a little more intense atmosphere. If you feel like the Lord is calling you to do it- then you know it is time. HAVE A KILLER MARATHON and enjoy the time off after with the family. Maybe more jamba juice/beach adventures. What a blessing!

Train-This said...

And that's why you should go fot it. You have the obvious talent and the down to earth sensibility. I can see it now..... you running down Alii Drive all smiles and giggles in whatever place you happen to be in..... but having the best time of any pro out there. And isn't that why we do this to begin with?

James Cotter said...

Tag!!
check out my page to see what to do. Kinda fun thing. I was tagged yesterday. Love reading your posts.

Crash said...

a double ironman - just.plain.silly.

but i do have to give everyone who even attempts it props.

Mel said...

Bree...
I am a new reader of yours and really enjoying it...Nice photo in the new Triathlete Mag...cute baby... luv the Hooter shirt :) How in the heck does someone walk after doing a Ultraman?????

Mel

Marni said...

I love reading your posts Bree!! Good luck with everything. I'd love to meet you one of these days. Hopefully I'll be out in Kona next year and we can get together! Your baby is adorable!

Jessi said...

So are you thinking about going pro and trying to still keep the fun element? Maybe Shanna showed you that you don't need to be super-serious to be pro? (I actually don't even know if she races pro or amateur. :)

I think you should get your pro card, if only because at least then you'd be out of my age group! :)

ShirleyPerly said...

Well, certainly you are fast enough to turn pro but hopefully that won't mean you can't have fun at the same time. And I loved hearing about Shana's toys. Maybe I should bring a little something with me to Vegas :-)