Dealing with what you perceive as failure!!!

Just what does that mean?

For me it was failing to attain what I wrote on the gym goal board. This is why writing down a goal takes courage and trying to attain it takes commitment.

So what has prompted this Blog? The first from me in a while. Well here are Total Performance Centre I wrote a goal on the board at the beginning of this year to get Top 5 in my age group at Western Sydney Half Ironman. After looking at last years times and what I believe I, on the perfect day could be capable of I thought that this was a stretch goal but it was achievable.

That was a hell of a goal and it set high expectations for me and as I wrote in a previous blog it was a big audacious goal. Did I achieve that goal. No I didn’t. I got nowhere near it. I left the Western Sydney 70.3 Ironman feeling deflated and like a failure. Let me be clear I am always very hard on myself post race anyway but after this race my head was not in a good place. Crossing the line I refused to wear the towel and refused to have the medal put around my neck. Let me be clear this is ridiculous behaviour and if anyone that I coached did this they would be scalded like an petulant child.

What led to this behaviour was a series of events that built over the series of a few weeks. We got back from Kona towards the end of October and I was motivated as I have ever been. Being around so many amazing athletes and watching how awesome my wife did in Kona really fuelled my training fire and had me feeling positive in the final 5 weeks leading in to Western Sydney. Then 3 weeks out I got a niggle in the heel. I went to work on it looking at possible causes and treated it quickly and effectively. But I didn’t rest it. The pressure of my own goals and expectations still had me running 3 days a week and then triaging the foot each day post running. Again, if a client did this with me I would tell them I can’t help them and stop treating them until they agreed to stop running on the injury.

The week leading in to Western Sydney was a challenging week. From seven days out there were some emotionally draining events that lead to a lack of sleep and complete lacklustre effort during the week and even come race day my usual race day excitement was just not there. Exactly seven days before Western Sydney I also landed heavily on the heal of the injured foot and bruised it further in a local club triathlon. Actually causing me to cease all running up until race day in a hope of getting it better for race day. So come race day instead of altering my goals I just went ahead and raced full gas and in the run I paid the price. A torn Plantar Fascia. I ended running around 17 km with the injury in itself is sheer madness, but the inner turmoil that I was going through would not allow any other outcome other than crossing the finish line.

Given a month of perspective and many hours of rehab I have come to realise it was a failure. Not with the outcome of the race. It was again my ego and pig headedness and lack of self respect for my body and my well-being on race day. The race on the other hand and how I finished it is again if you take out the self harm aspect, given that I ran the way I did even though every step felt like I was stepping on a rusty nail, I believe in the future I will be able to draw on that strength and endure the pain of running hard.

As with the Yin/Yan symbol there is a light and dark side of everything. You just need to search it out and learn from it.

Did I reach my 2018 goals? Nope!! Was the year a failure? HELL NO!!! I have learnt valuable lessons and banked another year of training in my body that will serve me well going forward.

What does 2019 bring? Will I be a bit more conservative with my goals? Hell no. This year my goals is as big and as audacious, in-fact probably bigger.

This years goals. Top 10 in my age group at Ironman Cairns on June 9. Why this goal? If I do achieve it there is a very real possibility that I will qualify for the Hawaiian Ironman in Kona in October. Will I achieve this goal? Don’t know, but if I don’t give it my all and do my very best to achieve it I know I will regret that even more than not attaining my goal.

For now thanks for reading and as usual if you have any questions about this don’t hesitate to comment or email.

And remember Exercise is not a punishment it is a privilege.

Mick Rand.

Posted on January 16, 2019 .