2014 was an interesting year of highs and lows…..of good moments of clarity…a moments of utter sorrow. I go back to this picture from Ironman Augusta 70.3 because it embodies the hope, vision and possibilities that the future can hold. The emotion of crossing my 7th Half Ironman finish line was very real and very intense because it was a powerful accomplishment…but it still was not the accomplishment that I was looking for…and that was an Ironman finish.
I spent this year exploring options on making me a better athlete. I explored the possibility of having additional plastic surgery to remove the excess skin in my legs but found I was not a good candidate for this surgery. Late in the year, I had gel injections in my knees to help me keep going in endurance sports but have been told that I am at a crossroads where some things need to change.
Years of being at 300 + pounds took their toll on my body..but especially my joints and I knew the day would come where I would have to decide to continue to race and face a knee replacement…or get committed to more weight loss so that I can extend the life of my joints. I pushed the envelope…I played the game…and now I find myself at that crossroads where a decision needs to be made.
It's hard to admit that you STILL have a problem with food. It's even harder to admit that you continue to race to show the world that your problem with food does not affect your racing…but in reality..it does. I have come a very long way. I never ever take for granted the amazing accomplishments that have blessed my life. No one would have EVER thought all those years ago that I would be able to do some of the things that I have done….but…
That one goal looms just out of reach…that Ironman brass ring waves in the breeze so high up that I just….can't…grab it. You can not fake your way through that sort of race. You can't pretend that the fitness level exists. It take so much out of the conditioned athlete…and it requires an athlete such as myself to take a long hard look at what will get me to the line…
And it means facing the demon of food addiction once again.
So this hard headed, frustrated plus size athlete made the decision to listen to her doctors (yes I got a second opinion..but he told me the same thing)…and withdrew from Ironman Maryland. I wish you could see me right now…tears streaming down my face knowing that I had to walk away…again…from this life goal…but your body and your heart will tell you when it's time to take care of yourself. Most of the time, I don't want to listen…but this time…I really must.
Even with the difficulties in my knees, I will still attempt (with every intention of completing) the Dopey Challenge at Walt Disney World. For those that do not know what the challenge consists of it is a 5k, 10k, half marathon and full marathon in 4 days.
I truly want to share the struggles of food and weight loss in my blog but if I go silent for awhile, I hope those that follow me will understand it is me…taking care of me. I will still race shorter distance events (Sprint distance in Clermont Florida and St. Anthony's Triathlon in St. Petersburg Fl) but I am unsure of what will be beyond that. My goal is 2015 is to finally get to the goal weight that has been as hard to attain as my Ironman dream. My husband is a great role model. He has spent the last 6 months losing 50 pounds…and my hope is that we can work as a team…train for short distance triathlon together and he can help me attain my goal. How blessed I am with a wonderful soulmate.
As always…Ill keep you posted.
Happy New Year :)