I’m positive that 30 years from now, I’ll look back on 2020 as the year that I learned how to pivot when plans change, and I’ll smile.
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This week, I have been thinking about how all of us are becoming absolute experts on how to thrive in an environment where plans change. Like, it’s becoming what we expect rather than an outlier. We are all just moving on with our lives.
Sure, as a mom, wife, and friend, I have learned how to make small adjustments as we live on the planet. We all have.
The grocery store is out of Vanilla almond milk? Sure, we will take original. Got it.
This year, though…this year is pushing us to learn how to pivot in every area of our lives as plans change.
School is out? Sure, I can figure out how to teach the kids for three months while keeping up with work and training and life and all the things. No problem.
(By the way, remember when it felt like that was going to be impossible? Congratulations! Plans changed and you figured out a way!)
Businesses can’t have customers in their stores anymore? Looks like we are switching to a curbside pickup model.
In 2020, it’s no longer true that talking about faith or politics is in bad taste. Now, it’s all we talk about. Everyone has a part to play in making our communities more inclusive and more fair, and people are picking up that responsibility and wearing it like a badge of honor.
We are all learning how to adjust and thrive when plans change.
Athletes love our plans
For athletes, especially those of us who have our rituals and routines, our plans and our goals, our visions of success, this can only be for our good.
Endurance athletes don’t get to operate on a whim. We don’t really have a sport that invites us to make spur of the moment decisions all that often.
For most of us, “Hey, want to run that marathon on Sunday?” isn’t really a question that we can answer in the affirmative.
No. Instead, we plunk down the registration money six months in advance or more, find the perfect training plan or coach, work on or base miles, train our guts to tolerate whatever sports nutrition we are going to slam down our gullets for hours at a time, hopefully get our support crew on board, make hotel reservations, board the dog, try out all the shoes and bottoms and creams and gear that we could possibly need on race day, and then we show up at the line with this vision of the day.
“I’m going to keep X pace for Y miles and then Ill crank it up a little and hold on. I’ll eat everything this number of minutes and drink this much water between aid stations…and on and on we go.”
We map it all out.
Then it has always felt like everything is crashing down when you show up and something is off. The dew point is too high, God forbid it’s raining, the race ran out of your flavor Cliff shot at the shot station, or you forgot the sunscreen you normally use and now you have to switch from Coppertone to Nutragena on race morning and everything is a disaster.
I’m laughing a little, but I have definitely done this kind of thing before and I’m willing to bet that you have, too.
Even when we try to put ourselves in a ready-for-anything posture in the past, like training in the rain to prepare for the chance at a rainy race, it still takes us off our game.
But now here we are: 2020. The year when our plans change.
And, dear athlete, I see you out there practicing how to thrive.
Ironman released another video just yesterday to teach us all what racing their brand is going to look like.
And yall, it’s uhh…different.
And while many of the reactions that I saw were people who are understandably worried about their health and want to be able to defer, what I saw that made me so proud of this community were all the people just being grateful to race.
Our attitude towards change is…well…changing!
We all get to figure out a transition where we strip our own wetsuits, change in open air, rack our own bikes, bring our own water…BUT WE GET TO RACE?
Recently, Track Shack in Orlando, the company that partners with runDisney for their race management shared how racing with them will look different with things like masks in the corrals and self serve aid stations, people said, “We might get to race?”
And to all the super brave athletes just figuring out how to squeeze in a run or a bike ride or living room workout, or yoga, or meditation, or whatever it is that you do, when you are trying to balance all of the eleventy bazillion different demands on your time, I see you saying, “I get to do my thing, but it might be a family ride or a shorter run or a louder yoga attempt?”
I see you gals who are hearing, for the first time, perspectives from people outside your own circle or are starting to break through the walls of privilege or the golden goose, or other judgement around your own heart. I hear you saying, “This is different and uncomfortable, but I GET to be a force for good when I do the work?”
Friends, here is what we know from the places 2020 is bringing us: our plans change, and it’s ok.
If you have to switch around the order of your workouts in the coming week?
If your nutrition slips a little because your family is heading out for the weekend?
Whatever is ahead, we know that we can hit a sick pivot, and keep it moving. Why? Because we are brave women athletes who can handle anything.
If you’d like to surround yourself with women who believe this the way that you do, join us in the growing Facebook group We are Finding Finish Lines and introduce yourself. We’d love to meet you and cheer you on.
Thank you for joining me today, I’ll be back with you on Monday. Have a blast doing all the hard things in training this weekend, and Carry on, women of valor.
WHAT IS ONE MAJOR PIVOT THAT YOU HAVE MADE BECAUSE OF A PLANS CHANGE? HAS IT WORKED OUT FOR THE BETTER FOR YOU?
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