This has been on my mind all week. This past weekend while talking triathlon with friends over coffee, I made the comment that I have a hard time considering myself an athlete, and an even harder time telling someone “I am an athlete/triathlete”. It’s much easier to say “I do triathlons” . One of the girls said to me you’ve done all of these things, ½ marathons, sprints, oly’s and even a 70.3. You can average 17mph on the bike and you don’t consider yourself an athlete? What more do you want? She was baffled. I tried to explain that while I knew when talking to someone who completes endurance races, most of them would never look down on me if I called myself an athlete. They know what it takes to cross the line, whatever the finish time. But tell someone that has really no idea what the difference between a marathon and triathlon is, and they look at you and see a middle aged woman who is carrying 30+ pounds more then she should, “athlete” is not a word they would use to describe me...ever. Obviously that is the way I too must look at myself.
WHAT MORE DO YOU WANT? She asked and I keep asking myself.
I can’t help but wonder if that is what drives me to go farther, to think about the next distance and can I do it? Will I then feel like an athlete? Who knows? Does it matter if I feel like an athlete? Maybe. Maybe not. Just what does an athlete feel like?
So how about you, are you an athlete?