In February, I was perusing the Ironman.com site and they had an announcement that Erin Baker’s was putting together a team and accepting applications. Instantly, I felt a burn in my heart. (My friend Jan will appreciate this). I recognized that burn immediately. It’s the feeling I get instantly when I know something is right. It’s the familiar tingle/chills feeling when I know I just have to do something. That roar of intuition and emotion is something we all have, but unfortunately, it’s something we suppress all too often. It’s the desire to act even if the rationalities of a decision don’t necessarily make sense at that particular moment.
I got that same feeling when I decided to pick up my life and move to Austin, Texas 11 years ago without knowing a soul. Of course, there were many reasons why I shouldn’t have moved, but my gut and my heart were telling me to just go for it. It’s also the feeling we get when we enter into a marriage. Lord only knows what lies ahead, but we listen to our instincts and our heart.
So, once again, I followed my heart and completed the application, shared my past race results and noted my future races and goals in hopes of being selected to this rather elite roster of people.
Of course, there were many reasons why this wasn’t a logical thing to do–reasons that many friends and loved ones have pointed out…I’m already on a triathlon team, I already have a bike, I’m not being paid, and I’m just basically pimpin’ someone’s product for free. (thank you very much for your support and enthusiasm)
What people don’t understand is that underlying instinct and emotion that I felt when I saw the information. It’s not about some immediate gratification or paycheck. It’s about the *potential* of what this team holds for me personally and professionally (and the free cookies) :-). I can’t describe the emotion inside that I felt when I got the call. I felt like I was the “C” student who applied to Harvard somewhat as a joke and was somehow accepted because they thought I was “different.” After years of struggling with weight and self-esteem issues, being selected to be a part of an Ironman-affiliated team is an overwhelming sense of accomplishment and proof positive that anything is possible…to anyone…at anytime. You just have to listen and act on that gut instinct.
Professionally, who knows what this team holds for me? Over the next year, I’m going to meet and associate with some amazing business owners and athletes who all share one common goal: We all want to Dot the M! We all want achieve the extraordinary by racing and finishing Ironmans. We’re all fascinated and entrenched in improving our lives by being healthy and fit. I may find my voice, my advocate, my business partner…who knows?! And you know what? I’d NEVER know if I hadn’t submitted my application.
So, now I’m on to the practical side of being on the team, which is why I’ve suppressed my enthusiasm for the last couple of weeks. I’m ordering my Kestrel bike that I’m required to ride for the next year (even though I own a luxurious Guru) and I’m anxiously awaiting receipt of my Erin Baker’s Race Kit (even though I own my T3 race kit). I’m nervous and excited as several of the people on the team are incredible–and I mean–INCREDIBLE athletes…Kona qualifiers, top age groupers, young studs, and me—the poser 🙂 I’ll be meeting several of them next week at the Wildflower Triathlon.
I’ll definitely be blogging my progress throughout the year and, yes, I’ll be pimpin’ my sponsors without getting a check.
With that being said, thanks to Erin Baker’s Wholesome Baked Goods, Kestrel Bicycles, Play Tri Coaching and Race Day Wheels! I look forward to an amazing year of growth, both personally and professionally!