There have been several fun references to my being "pissed off for greatness" flying around since Susan Lacke interviewed me for Triathlete Magazine last week. I love that Ray Lewis pep talk, and I love the constant challenge of my job as a professional triathlete: Trying, every day, to make all the right little decisions and to give my best focused effort each training session to keep getting better. I am super passionate about triathlon, I love high level competition, and I am really thrilled to have just won the 70.3 North American Championship race in St. George Utah!

Stepping back from an intense focus on trying to deliver ones best performance; however, it is great to be reminded that the things we say and do in our own personal pursuits of excellence are often way more meaningful than any race result. I feel very privileged to visit with people at races and have fans share stories with me about how I have inspired them. Just writing that sends tingles down my spine. Inspiring people, and being inspired in return is as incredibly rewarding part of my job.  On a scale of zero to crying at your computer, this e-mail definitely tips the teary end of the scale! I was enormously touched and very grateful that Colette took the time to share this with me. If you want some good warm-fuzzies, please read on...

 

Heather,

I just wanted to send you a quick note (ummmm....ok, novel) to tell you about the influence you have had on my 8 year old daughter Linnea.

I was watching one of your videos on the Kicker Endurance Facebook page and I didn't realize Linnea was watching over my shoulder. You were speaking about racing Ironman triathlons- when it gets hard, you tell yourself those one of those moments that you need to push through...these moments are why you are out there. When the video finished, she asked me to play it again.

And again.

And again the next day. You get the point. We've watched it A LOT.

Since then, your words come up all the time. My husband and I are both coached age groupers in Victoria, BC and our kids witness our crazy schedule where we try to juggle training for all three sports, kids activities, work and family time. My daughter caught the bug last year and did her first triathlon. She said it was the hardest and most fun thing she's ever done in her life. My son (who is 5) claims that he's waiting until next year...when he will do a triathlon and be the youngest kid in Victoria to race a 5k. Lol. But I digress....

Every time I head out for a bike ride, run or swim, my daughter asks- "Mom, is it a hard one?" If I say yes, she tells me..."That's why you're out there." When she finishes swim practice with her swim club and I ask her how it was, often she will say it was hard...."but it was still great Mom. Still doing it when it's hard is why I'm out there."

Wow. Are you kidding me!?!?!?

When she caught wind that you were racing at Oceanside, she wanted to get up early and watch the race coverage. She sees your picture in our magazine and knows who you are. Suddenly she wanted to sign up for another tri this year....despite the big hard hill on the bike course...because (yup, you guessed it) still doing it when it's hard is what makes it great!!!

We are moving to a new house in 2 weeks and plan to make half of our garage into a training room. And we are going to put those words on the wall..."What makes it hard is why you're out there".

Thanks Heather. You've inspired my kid. That is pretty cool and I thought you deserved to know.

 

Um. WOW

This is the Kicker video:

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Another young sports fan in St. George

 

 

This e-mail came a really good time for me, actually, as a reminder to take my own advice. In my initial training for Ironman Texas I had a hard time totally embracing it.  I love epic terrain, beautiful mountainous scenery and generally cooler conditions like at Ironman Canada and Coeur d'Alene.  Texas is flat, hot, and humid. All the things that I dislike about Ironman courses. But, it has the most competitive field so it is going to be a harder race in that respect, and I need the practice in the humid heat for Kona... and what makes it hard is why I'm out there!

I love that sport enables you to learn so much about yourself, and that the most satisfying lessons usually come from the things that challenge you. We all have the capacity to change our perspectives, improve our focus and change our feelings about ourselves and what we are capable of. We are not locked into the limitations of our experiences. I am not currently a front pack swimmer, but that doesn't mean I won't ever be. Running used to be my weakness and now it is my strength. This ongoing capacity to change and improve is what makes sport and life such a wonderful adventure!

Thank you all for being a part of my wonderful adventure.  

 

 

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