Further Thoughts on the Triathlon

I am still in the afterglow of my athletic achievement on Sunday, and I've been thinking more and more about what it means to me.

I think the fact that this was something that was completely 100% ME makes it all the more special. When you do a show, you work in a team. At a job, unless you work for yourself, a team. Sure, I trained with people (Hi Andrea! Hi Brandi! Hi Fuzzy! ummm, and anyone else I trained with!), and that was a HUGE factor in my success, but the actual swimming, biking and running was something that my body did on its own. I wasn't competing with anyone else--I was proving to myself that I could do it. And I think the tears that came when I saw the finish line was partially relief, but mostly amazement that I achieved this major goal, one that old-me or elven last year-me never thought I could do.  It was beautiful swimming with the pack and biking the first mile with Fuzzy, but when he left, it was just me. Me biking alone in the country, me running alone in the woods. Me crossing the finish line alone. With the support of my friends and family and especially wonderful husband, of course, but it was my legs alone that got me there.

The last 8 years, while being wonderful and amazing, have also been really tough and primarily about caring for others and putting their needs first. Caring for Dad and Mom, mainly. I wasn't able to cope with a lot of things, so I quit most everything that was mine. I lost my identity, I gave up all hope.  And now, thank the Lord, I am in a place where I can put myself first and not be responsible for anyone or anything but ME, and it feels great. I am doing more than ever, creatively, athletically, socially. I am CAPABLE of doing more than ever. I feel on top of my game and unstoppable. I don't hide from people anymore. I am enjoying my success. I am carving out a nice little place for myself in the comedy world, and I love it. Finally, after being here for 12 years, I feel like I am coming into my own.

I've been thinking a lot about the phrase "being the best you that you can be." I want to be the best Me. What is my potential? How far can I go if I really push it? How do I take my life and career to the next level? I am pushing myself to find out.

And I can feel things shifting. Not just for me, for a lot of people. Maybe it's the age we are--there's no need to live in fear anymore. It's time to just LIVE.  I'm on the crux.

The triathlon is an extention of all of this. It wasn't the right time for me to do it last summer. And with the state of my knees, I might not physically be able to next summer. But right now, in this moment and my next few moments, I am there. It is right.

And I am loving every second of it. That's why I couldn't and can't stop smiling. 


Here are some more photos from the event, all but 1 taken by Fuzzy (guess which one!)


Checking out the transition area 

The night before, we checked out the transition area.

Checking out the transition area

Fuzzy and I were right next to each other!

Note our body markings. When you do a tri, they write your numbers on your arm and leg so that you are easily identifiable. I promptly smeared mine all over my other leg when I crossed them at dinner, and we smudged our sheets all up in the hotel. Sorry, housekeeping staff!

Geneva Lake

Calm Geneva Lake, at about 5:30am.

Who's that trucking down the finish?

Here's me! Running out of the woods and down the chute to the finish!
(you'll notice my weird leg gait. Due to how my legs are built, they are always tilted to the side like that. And I wonder why my good knee is still hurting 5 days later...)

It's Erica!

Note to self--don't talk while people are taking your photo. I was telling Fuzzy that I was crying.
Also, this photo makes it look like my left shoulder is jacked up with muscles. I am going to guess that it is actually extra arm skin flapping in the wind.


(the arm sleeve is a UV sleeve to protect my tattoos. Those things are precious to me, yo! Gotta keep them looking good!)