And... (deep breath)... and a lot of the bloggers that I consider new-found friends... are the ones that I'll be racing against this season.
But you know what? (And this surprised me the more I thought about it...)
I want EVERYONE to race their best, to meet and achieve their goals, to be happy and successful. If they beat me - well, that's okay. Because winning or beating someone else isn't what its about, is it? Sure, doing well in a race is nice. BUT - knowing that you've given it your all AND that your fellow competitors/friends have also had the race of their lives makes me happy.
Through reading everyone's blogs, I know how hard everyone works. I am so amazed, so inspired by all of you. It motivates ME to go out and try my hardest.
Anyway, I think that Mary really summed it up well. In a few weeks, a bunch of us will be meeting in South Carolina for Camp HTFU. I haven't met any of these women face-to-face, but I feel that they are all kindred spirits. They have supported me, helped me, have been there fore me - and I haven't even had the pleasure of meeting them yet.
It may surprise you to read that I'm a bit shy, a bit of an introvert. I was never the popular kid in high school, and would (in all honesty) prefer a small group of friends in an intimate setting over a rave or big party any day. During the post-race parties, I'll usually do a long cool-down and then retreat to a corner with a few friends.
I think that's why blogging, and getting to know my blogging buddies online has been so rewarding. To know that there are others out there like me - we've really formed a great support network. Some are excited and boisterous, others are a bit more shy...
But often times I find myself going through a workout and wonderg about so-and-so, or hoping that someone else had a great swim meet. I am so touched by all of you, and am amazed by your dedication and strength. You make ME want to be a better athlete, and I hope in some way, I can do the same for you.
Thanks for your entry Mary - here it is...
I was feeling tired this morning. I have been sititng at my desk, preparing spinning class, this am's swim, and my run. Assembling music. I am looking out my window to snow, and I am so glad it is not rain or ice. This is winter give me snow.
And again I vowed that when I earn my Master's I will take a travel job to a warm climate with the boys. I love to watch them play on the beach next to the ocean.
Mopey, I am a little mopey this morning.
Then the doorbell rang. It was the Fed Ex truck with my Camp HTFU suit from Splish.
It made me smile.
In the package the lovely Dawn Heckman had packed me a cap. A pink cap. I don't like pink but it made me smile. I just might wear it.
Then I re-read an email from Ashley. She said it was 74 degrees in South Carolina yesterday. I visited Marit's page. She lives in Florida and I will say nothing more but know I am envious.
So Jennifer, Elizabeth, and I (where does Leslie live?) rest in the tundra, the Northeast for me and the middle of the country for them. When I hear they were socked with snow, I know I am next.
But in just 21 days we will all converge in a passenger van, in South Carolina. I really only know Jen, but I feel like I have known these gals all my life. They've got some serious track records, and they are all highly talented women who are much faster than I am.
I think camps are terrific for that very reason. Where, except in a race am I going to have this sort of experience? To train with the best of the best and come out of it at a brand new level?
One might thing with the trophies these ladies have, that there could be a clash of the ego.
But I think that's why we've all gotten along so well. Because with this gang, that doens't exist. I feel a sense of team, community, togetherness. Like the sorority that I never belonged to, but could there be a sorority quite like this? No hazing, no drama.... just bring your bike and get ready for some good old fashioned training and fun.
Rather than hairdos there are helmets. Instead of designer boots there are running shoes.
Although, we all did make a special custom HTFU suit for this event. So we have that.
And coffee, don't forget the coffee. Except Jen Harrison is allowed none of that.
So here's to Camp HTFU. Here's to riding in the sun. Here's to our completley rediculous suits. Here's to a lot of miles, here's to a lot of laughing.
It brightens my day just thinking about it!