Well he wrote me a new letter, and this is another good one. Harry, who we all call him, is a Dartmouth graduate, WW2 vet, and a great writer. I always enjoy the letters and numerous NY Times articles he cuts out and sends to us. He does a great job remembering all of our hobbies and interests and he tries hard to find new perspectives on these hobbies and interests to send to us.
In this latest letter he brings up some good points regarding excess vs moderation. My take away is, "Are we so consumed by this sport that we are missing out on other things in life?"
Dear Jon -
Gran'ma H and I I hope you've made a full recovery - bounce back from whatever physical insults you experienced at and during your "go" in the Lake Placid Triathlon. Sorry I forgot to tell you about Tums; house-brand Walgreen Antacid Tabs are the same and half the price.
It's doubtful anything I said or wrote about your triathlon training and participation warranted quotations in your blog - but an obituary in yesterday's New York Times [he included it with this letter] for 41 year old Amy Martich who died in NYC's recent triathlon must surely pose questions that all triathloners ought to ponder, with or without quotation from your 87 year old step grandpa.
Wherein lies the greater honor, glory, self satisfaction and esteem? Is it in the life sacrificed to the extreme physical demands of the triathlon? Or would it be in the measured in years of normal actuarial expectancy which are dedicated to family, offspring, community and productive employment? The latter, of course, would be a life governed by moderation, not excess.
Would your fellow bloggers waste their time on such questions? I wonder - and I'm doubtful. But no harm asking.
Harry, if you get a chance to read this, you hit upon a LOT of issues we triathloners think about every day.
I have it easy, actually, not being married, working a pretty cushy job that pays extremely well and requires only 40 hours a week. This is why I refrain from ever complaining about not having enough time and money to train because I know of a number of fellow bloggers who are married, have small children, and have a bit of a commute, and yet they are training just as much as I am and are putting up times faster than me. These are the true heroes in this sport. They have mastered that "balance" that we all crave so much.
And this brings upon my next point: I am doing this now while I am young, injury free (well most of the time!), not married and not tied down by the responsibilities of a family. These are things I want one day, just not now. I want to get this whole triathlon "thing" out of my system before I am ready to settle down and put my energies towards other things.
I know that I limit myself in terms of seeing family due to training obligations, but for large races I try to include my family. Lake Placid was a HUGE success. I tried my best to keep the race separate from our vacation until the last possible moment.
For now, I have another Ironman to train for in EXACTLY one year. This is where my energies are going. I will figure it out from there :)
Since Harry asked the question, what about you?
Wherein lies the greater honor, glory, self satisfaction and esteem? Is it in the life sacrificed to the extreme physical demands of the triathlon? Or would it be in the measured in years of normal actuarial expectancy which are dedicated to family, offspring, community and productive employment?