Take on your Fears!

12 Jan

Take on your Fears with passion and desire!

We all have things we are afraid of. Nobody likes to fail either, we all like to do what we are good at our strengths. But we all have things we aspire to do and want to pursue but fear typically stands in the way and holds us back. What we need to do is ask ourselves what scares us most about that thing? And then get into the right mindset and be dedicated and diligent about following through on what we set out to accomplish. We can’t make excuses and we can’t quit.

2018 is a new year for me, one where I am doing just this; taking on a challenge and working on a weakness. Swimming, I have been competing in Triathlon for over 12 years now from sprint distance to full Ironman distance and everything in between. But for all these years the swim has been that daunting Achilles heal to me. I come from a running back ground and don’t have a swim back ground. Sure I can swim and use to play in lakes and water ski and all that jazz in my younger days but I was never a “lap swimmer” someone who was focused on swimming for fitness. So when I took on the sport of Triathlon I had to teach myself to swim and work on swim fitness so I could complete the races. I got myself to a certain level where I was a mid pack swimmer nothing fast and exceptional but good enough to complete the distances and keep myself in contention to do what I’m good at and that is bike and run and chase people down to place on the podium. So for years I have played the hunter in Triathlon coming out behind most in the swim and then picking them off one by one on my bike and with my run legs and it’s worked I’ve had a lot of success racing. But 2018 is different my 15 year old daughter Bella loves to swim has a huge passion to swim and is a really good swimmer. I wanted to find that same level of passion for the swim and give it a go to understand her passion for it better and in the same time improve my swimming and make myself even more competitive in 2018 racing Triathlon.
2018 bring on the pool! Joining the group at Minnetonka Master’s has been wonderful! It’s very humbling for me but I love it! Not only is this new challenge helping me with my swim fitness but it’s helping me with my mental game and my psychology to overcome fears and things and not good at and work hard at them to improve. I believe so much of what we do in endurance sport is about mental strength and being able to set your mind right, being able to overcome fears and get through dark and hard moments. In running I’m the fastest the people I coach the groups and people I train with and even most I compete against I can hang with them and beat them. So I’m use to being the best so to speak at what I do. Swimming however I’m one of the slow kids down in lane 6 or 7 and fighting hard to keep up with the faster kids in lanes 4 and 5. In order for an athlete to take on their fears and new challenges they must kick those egos aside and embrace being slower, embrace the struggle and stay positive and consistent to fight their way up the ladder and make it less humbling. I’ve seen this so many times with runners who take long breaks away or a slower runner fighting for a Boston qualifying time who just comes up short and loses focus. So it applies to whatever your chasing, just so happens with me it applies to swim!
My goal in 2018 was swim 2-3 days per week and I would say I have really been 3 days per week and plan to keep that up and maybe even a 4th day some weeks. It’s not always easy to wake up early and make practice, it’s not always easy to squeeze in the pool time with life but I’m a man of my word and a man of focus determination and passion so nothing slows me down! If I say I’m swimming then I’m in that pool in the morning even if I was out rocking at a concert the night before, no matter how busy life is, how tired I am if I made that commitment to swim and log a certain number of hours per week in the pool then I do it! I see so many athletes make excuses all the time and never truly hold themselves accountable to chasing their goals and reaching the success they want. You can’t be that way, you have to stay consistent and you have to be dedicated without that failure is bound to happen over and over.

Today I just finished my first time ever of swimming 5 days in a row! The masters program put out a challenge this week to swim 5 days in one week. So I took on that challenge and said game on! It was not easy, trust me Wednesday practice was really hard because Tuesday night I was at the Dakota Jazz club with friends to see a David Bowie tribute drinking wine eating too much food so that 4:45am wake up the next morning was tough. Even today day five was really tough because it’s negative 10 degrees out and crawling out of a warm bed to go jump in a cold pool is not easy. But I have to say once I left practice today I felt alive! I felt like I just had three shots of espresso and was ready to go for the day! I am so proud of myself for taking on this daunting challenge and completing it with no excuses and with a positive attitude! Five days and 9.3 miles of swimming in one week and I finished off today swimming my fastest 100’s to date! Progress is happening and the swim is starting to become a strength for me. My fear of the pool the water is gone and I embrace those hard and humbling workouts! I can now say I love the pool!

Here we sit just 12 days into a new year I want each of you to think about things that scare you, your fears and I want you to attack them! I want you to set the goals and then chase them with dedication and passion and no excuses! I hate excuses!! Excuses just mean you don’t really want it.
Best wishes to your improvement, and tackling those fears! The proud feeling that will radiate inside you once you’ve completed challenges like this are simply priceless!
Coach MBRubber ducky Master swim


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