Saturday, November 28, 2015

If There is No Bling Did it Really Happen?

I've been contemplating why so many of us (me included) feel the need to sign up for events. 

It's pretty and it dings!
I am committed to training for life not medals in 2016. And it's a harder promise to keep than one (I at least) might think. Over the last week alone I found myself lusting over the Philly Marathon Medal (photo left) and turning my thoughts away from the Ocean City Half. 

Why are formal events and the bling that goes with them so tempting? Is it just the bling? Or is there more to it? 

Is it the challenge of training for something? Seeing the challenge through to the end? I can honestly say that's why I trained for my FIRST marathon (2008). But after I finished I felt like I needed to do it again. Why? During the Goofy races (half and full marathon in one weekend) I told Dave to lock me in the closet if I ever talked about something like that again. Yet just this weekend, I had a fantastical conversation with my brother in law, Jean, about the Dopey Challenge (5k, 10k, Half and Full on 4 consecutive days) in 2019. What is wrong with me? 

BTW, I do not have the answers to any of these questions; least of all that last one. 

I know it's not just the social aspects of training and racing because my fitness buddies and I have put in plenty of miles together just because and even organized our own events and had a blast!! No medals just fun. 

So I don't know why we do it. If you have thoughts on the subject I'd love to hear them in the comments. 

Training for life not medals has had a noticeable positive effect so far. In two months, I've rarely missed a workout and when I did it was for a reason not an excuse. I never felt 'guilty' about missing. Why? I think it's because I have nothing to lose right now. If I don't perform well in a workout there is no penalty. There is no time or steps toward a goal lost. If I go out to run, walk, bike or workout and I struggle or can't finish, it just is what it is. With nothing to lose I don't have to be perfect. Yes, I know I didn't have to be perfect before either, but the brain plays a mean game sometimes. 

Without the perfectionist aspect of training, in the past two months, I've hardly struggled and never not finished. Take that brain! :) 

-Keep smiling and keep moving


  1. I have to say: I haven't trained for bling in a long time, and that medal made me wish I was running this year's half. It is one of the best medal designs I've seen in a long time!

  2. I train first for fitness, then for personal accomplishments (that's the fun part because you can make these up as you go along). I run in organized events to "test" myself in a more official capacity. It's super fun to run in places that you can't normally go - like right down the middle of Chestnut St, or Epcot at 2am. The bling is a happy byproduct of the other activities that I welcome with open hands (neck?).