Every year, we see ad after ad, encouraging us to “lose weight” “get healthy” “join a gym”, etc. Year after year, gyms are packed from January to March with the promise of a better body, more energy, etc. etc. etc. But why is it that within a few short weeks, that annoying shower line at the gym dissapears?
There’s a big difference between a CROWD and a COMMUNITY, which is why you can go to a croweded gym and still feel no connection to the people in it. How is it that you can feel alone when you’re surrounded by people? That’s the difference between joining a PLACE and joining a TEAM. People who are part of a TEAM are more likely to STAY THE COURSE.
What I’ve learned over the years from competing and coaching hundreds of athletes, is how big of a role COMMUNITY has on your ability to stick to your resolutions.
When you join a TEAM, you’re instantly connected with likeminded people with similiar GOALS and ASPIRATIONS. You BOND over early rides and coffee instead of beers and wings. You’re somehow convinced that a Ragnar Relay is a good idea, and that it would be fun to ring in the new year with a midnight run in Central Park. Suddendly the one triathlon you set your sights on morphs into five, and you find yourself contemplating an IRONMAN for next season (what?!?). You find your benchmarks shifting from “to lose 10 pounds” to “to PR my next race” and you’re looking for ways to make your body PERFORM at its best rather than LOOK its best. (When you shift your perspective, the latter often follows!)
Before long, your teammates become FRIENDS who will hold you ACCOUNTABLE every step of the way.
You look forward to meeting your friend for a morning run and wouldn’t dare hit snooze and stand her up. You LEARN what to wear as the seasons change to stay dry and comfortable when working out. You realize that lending an ear on on a long run can often be better than a therapist.
It takes COURAGE to get involved and taking the first step may not always come easy. I’m PROUD of you for making that committment to yourself. SHOWING UP allows you to see that you’re NOT ALONE in this venture. Triathletes come in ALL shapes, sizes, paces and ages.
This year, I encourage you to make a different kind of resolution. RESOLVE to become an active part in your COMMUNITY and the payoff will far surpass the investment. Crossing a finish line alone is one thing. Crossing it in the company of your teammates with encouragement, laughter, and the promise of a post-race party, changes the entire experience.
I’m THANKFUL for each and one of my teammates and EXCITED about all the new friends that will join us this season!
Co-Founder, Head Coach
Empire Tri Club