So here I am, just a couple of days out from the first race that will start Luke and I on our way to our Spartan Trifecta, the Pennsylvania Spartan Super. An 8+ mile race up and down (and up and down) a mountainside in northeast PA. This weekend we get the blue slice of the pie. The others will follow.
As Kathy and I were walking to the gym this morning she asked me:
“How do you feel about your race this weekend?”
and I gave my normal reply:
“I feel good. I think I’m ready to go.”
I think to myself, in training I have done just about everything according to plan. I feel great and I am physically ready to go. I run through my list and check all the boxes.
- Got in my rugged trail miles and they felt great
- Improved my upper body and core strength
- Got my pull-ups far above where they were last year
- And even got to play on some hanging grip strength obstacles that Luke and I made.
These are hard, but fun to do anyway. I just wish I didn’t miss the ball-to-dowel transition at the end.
Yep, I am physically ready to go.
And then as I was leading her through her workout, I thought about it a little more and came to the strange realization that in reality I don’t feel “good” about this race. For some strange reason I feel pressure.
Not pressure to finish the race; which I should do,
Not pressure to out perform Luke; which I probably won’t do.
But pressure to place well. Something I have never experienced in the obstacle races which I have done leading up to this. Just, this nagging thought of what if you don’t place well?
Yes, I placed well in each of my past two races, but that doesn’t matter. I can’t control who will or won’t show up on the side of a mountain in Pennsylvania. All I can control is my effort and race to the best of my ability. No more and no less. I can’t control the level of my competition.
This takes me back to my days of coaching Luke in wrestling when the last things I would tell him before sending him out for each match.
Be aggressive – Not angry
Do you best and let God take care of the rest.
I guess it’s time to follow my own advice.