This post is written by Susan Lacke.
“Hey, honey. I’m going to disappear for about 15 hours each week to exercise. When I come back, I’m going to be really tired, so I’ll nap for at least a few hours.
“I’ll be hungry a lot, and you know when I’m hungry, I’m not very pleasant to be around. Basically, what I’m telling you is that you’re on your own for the next six months. But I’ll have a medal to show for it!”
Can you imagine uttering those words to your spouse?
Probably not. But when you sign up for a long race, that’s exactly what you’re saying.
Training for any event takes a lot of time, dedication and energy.
But training for a long race, like a marathon, ultramarathon, or Ironman triathlon, takes even more. It’s an incredibly selfish endeavor — you disappear for hours to train while your spouse takes care of the kids, and for what? A medal with your name engraved on it.
Where’s the trophy for the family?
It might seem like you’ll be the one doing all the heavy lifting when training for a race, but the ones you love will carry a burden, too.
I’ve experienced this firsthand: my husband has poked me awake during more than one date night at the movies, my brother has asked if I really need to disappear for a run during our family vacations, and I’ve missed several gatherings with friends in order to get my scheduled training in.
At first, when they sighed and said it was “no big deal,” I took that at face value.
Eventually, I learned it was a big freakin’ deal. My friends and family wanted to support me, but I wasn’t giving them anything in return.
There’s a line between “support” and “resentment,” and the side your loved ones fall on will depend largely on the choices you make.
So how do you guarantee those choices are good ones? Here are 8 steps to point you in the right direction …