The Passage Of Pain
Last Sunday, I finised an IRONMAN 70.3 mile triatholan in Racine, WI.  Many of you helped motivate me back in December when I started training, by posting something you would commit to.  Thank you for your inspiration, and I hope you met your goal as well.  If not, the second best time to get started is NOW.
Here is what I learned during the grueling 96 degree heat for a 6.5 hour race.
 1)  To take on any significant challenge, you will probably not sleep well the night before, you will have some fear, and you may even feel a sense of panic.  I personally felt panic during the swim start, but it faded in seconds to an inner calm that is indescribable.  After you start your particular task or challenge and you are puting the work in, the fear and panic fade, and you are just in motion.  The work in still hard, but there is little to worry about at that point.  It is really the classic saying of , “The joy is in the Journey.”  Most of what we fear never happens, and if it does, we find that is really was not that big of a deal.  In the end, you must face the fear to grow, but just know that it will be quick and an incredible serenity will be on the other side, assuming it was a worthwhile challange to take on.
2) In the end, true life and health come down to communtiy.  At my weakest moments during the race, when all the glucose has essentially left my body, I was rejuvenated by seeing my wife and kids or parents at moments when least expected it.  During a true journey with hard work at hand, little time is spent worrying about bills, the stock market, or even work you may enjoy and find important; you just want to feel the love of people.  Everyone has different ways of showing their connection to others.  The people of Racine, Wisconsin, were in their yards with hoses, spraying people for fun but also to help them cool down and avoid heat stroke!  It was a true oasis to see a boy with a water soaker gun and him pointing at you and You noding your head saying…light me up baby…I Need WATER!!  It was mutual joy!  We all can learn from that.  How can we have mutual joy in nearly all we do with our community…family, street, city, state, country, world.  As American, I think we are a naturally competitive people, which is not wrong, but many times we do things that are not on a MUTUAL JOY level.  Food for thought!
3)  Anyone can do anything!  The ironman events have people that you wouldn’t believe finishing the race.  I saw men and women easily 40 to 100 lbs. overweight finishing the race.  I saw 50, and 60 years olds, some faster than I, finishing the race.  I mean, we are talking a 6 to 7 hour race on average with no stop in 95 degree heat.  If you put the right time to visulize, BELIEVE, set goals, and put the work in to prepare, you can literally do almost anything.
Much love and respect!
Dr. M
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