Love, Appreciation, and Triathlon


Posted by Coach Chris Palmquist

Valentine's Day and love are what's up this week, and this has me reflecting on all the ways "love" impacts my training and racing.

Partner Love

There are traditional ways that love can affect our success in our sport. My husband has often expressed his love for me by encouraging me to pursue my endurance sports goals. He bought me my first good bike. He taught me how to enjoy running. He took charge of kids, dog and household when I needed to train or race. And I have done those same things for him. Nothing shows love like saying, "Honey, go ride your bike today!"



Do you have enough self-love to give yourself the gift of fitness and all the good that comes from training and racing?  If you are reading this newsletter, you probably do.  And this is something to celebrate. We need to take care of ourselves in order to make a long lasting, positive mark on this world.  Feeling strong and healthy are the rewards for saying, "I am worthy.  I deserve to claim the time and energy that it takes to be active."  There is a tendency for some athletes to equate "self-love" with "selfish."  But it is possible to find that balance that allows your training to help you be the best person, worker, wife/husband, mom/dad and friend that you can be.  Believe that balance exists and don't let yourself slide to last place on this year's priority list.



For any relationship to thrive, each partner must express appreciation for one another.  Your relationship with your sport is the same.  If you are the athlete who dreads every workout and race, obsesses about poor performances and frames their training and racing as an obligation, not a privilege, you will not last long.


Coach Mark, Hailey Danisewicz, Debbie Ragals, Wesley Johnson, Amy Dixon
and Coach Chris (October, 2015). Happy they GET to swim!


If I could give you only one piece of advice as a coach to an athlete, it would be this. Appreciate it all. Find the good in every training session and every race and every competitor and appreciate the heck out of all of it.  As you stand on that starting line, take some deep breaths and say to yourself, "I am so darn lucky to have the health and good fortune to be able to race this race today."  When your alarm goes off before dawn for that swim session, sit up and say, "I get to swim this morning!"  Talk the self-talk of appreciation even when you don't yet truly feel appreciative. The simple act of vocalizing, "I'm glad and lucky to be here today," can turn around your race or workout.  Never forget - that day will come when we cannot train or race.



One of my favorite sayings as an athlete and as a coach is, "We are the lucky ones!" Put everything into proper perspective today.  Find the joy and the love in your training and racing.  Find the right balance of family and training that allows for success in both arenas.  Appreciate all that we find on this journey. That will lead to your greatest success as an athlete. 

~Coach Chris

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