Sunday, June 29, 2014

Transition Practice

So it looks like I haven't posted for two months.  Where does the time go!?!?  The emails requesting I update this blog have not gone unnoticed!

In those two months I've had a few weeks away from my family, volunteered as run course captain at a local triathlon, went to an AWESOME minor league baseball game (2 hour rain delay and then a 14 inning extra inning game of baseball madness!  PLUS Mike got himself a foul ball. #freebaseball), was hired at the YMCA (second job), went to Delaware for some exciting work meetings, and there is always the normal everyday stuff that is probably not worth mentioning.

Pics from the night of #freebaseball (beard have been shaved off :(  )

There was also an important life milestone and a couple holidays.  My wife and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary and, in that same week, there was National Running Day and National Donut Day.  Talk about a mind explosion of awesome.

To get a little more recent with the goings on of my exciting life, I've been sucked into the World Cup.  I'm a fan of sport and I have been known to watch any soccer match that comes on the tele, but this World Cup has been so awesome that my level fandom has skyrocketed.  The "I-took-a-day-off-work-to-watch-a-match" level.

Finally, to get even MORE recent, I worked another triathlon this morning.  The "I Love the Tavern Triathlon".  I've manned the bike and run courses so this time I tackled the transition area.  With working a new area there was a learning curve.  If I had to grade how well I did I would go with a C+.  With 400+ bikes (some with a price tag close to 10k) you have to be careful and only allow athletes into the transition.  For the first 45 minutes I failed at this.  During this time myself, and 6 other volunteers, were body marking everyone.

Side-note: Leading up to race morning this was the biggest concern I had.  I've never been in a race that did body marking and I've never marked someone.  A few people in I realized how irrational of a fear this really was...

After the transition area got in lockdown mode, myself, and a few others, worked the mount line.  It's critical that an athlete does not mount their bike until after they cross the line.  It was during this time I was sure I would lose my voice.  For a quick second I worried about having to go to work tomorrow without a voice.  I realized how this irrational this is too.

Once the bikes left the transition I got to talking to one of my fellow volunteers.  He is leaving for college and was telling me about his triathlon exploits.  Him and his family went around the country and he would compete in triathlons.  You wouldn't know it just from meeting him.  He was extremely humble with his exploits.  Telling you this allows me to transition into someone I met who was the complete opposite..

The race took place alongside the James River, in a local park.  Whilst playing transition bouncer a gentlemen walked up who was not marked as an athlete.  I told him that only athletes were allowed in the transition area.  In an accent that sounded Australian (which ended up being a southern accent with a wad of dip in his mouth) he told me he ran this park.  Also telling me he could shut down the race if he wanted to.  I looked at him a little perplexed (see southern accent with big wad of dip in his mouth) and he said "you don't believe me?".  I replied "I do believe you".  The question was apparently not going to sway his decision to show me his I.D. because he started getting it out while I answered said question.  I'm not sure if he was waiting for an apology or something because he stood there for a few extra seconds, said something I could not understand, and walked away.  Good times!

Volunteering to captain a portion of a race is weird.  I get a similar kind of "runner's high" while I'm at the race and after it's over.  So I'll sign up to captain another race and leading up to the race I tell myself "this is the last race I'm going to captain".  Walking back to my car today I tried to remember when the next race was...

bikes on bikes on bikes

The next time I transition captain I will do much better.  Aside from the one part about letting in spectators, I needed to be told what to do a couple times.  Chalk it up to lack of experience.  Practice makes perfect, I guess.

Speaking of transition.   The last couple months have been the toughest of our time here.  When we first moved here we were meeting people, and attempting to build friendships, but that has almost stopped.  I say attempt lightly.  Working out has also been put on the back burner.  I've worked out once every couple weeks for the past month (which may be a contributing factor in us having that blah feeling).

The support here has been great.  The people we have spent time with are great.  Finding a church has been a rough spot.  At first we thought we found one, and went for a few months, but it was not for us.  Since then we've been a few places a few times each and nothing seems to fit.  It's to the point where they're starting to blend together.  I don't know.  We've just been tired.  Tired and overwhelmed.  Overwhelmed and disengaged from the world.  We've put ourselves on a little pity island and used the row boat and oars as kindling for a fire.  I'm going to do what's best for my family and go where God wants us, but I don't know where that is. Is it back to Ohio?  Here in Virginia?  Who knows.  Maybe we just need some practice.

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