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Good Timing is a Fallacy

bad timing good timing love

So many people talk about waiting for good timing to do things. To plan that big vacation, to train for that race, to start exercising, to eat healthier, to make a purchase, to invest, to change jobs/careers, start a business, get married (or divorced?), etc... Well my friends, good timing doesn't really exist. Let me tell you a story.

In 2006 I ran the Steelhead Half Ironman. I immediately wanted to run an Ironman, like that night at the bar we were talking about it, no recovery time. I wanted it. I continued talking about it for several years. I never signed up, I never trained. I continued swimming, running shorter triathlons, running full marathons, but never took the leap to train for a full Ironman because it takes "too much time". I was focusing on my career, working a lot of hours, then I started dating my soon to be wife, then we were getting married, then we were moving to Florida, then we were having kids, here I am in 2020. Wanting to run an Ironman. An Ironman is 2.4 miles swimming, 112 miles biking, then 26.2 miles running, a full marathon to close out the day. It takes a lot of time, it's difficult, many people who signup and train don't actually finish, they collapse, they become dehydrated, they get hurt, some just plain quit.

Is 2021 good timing for me to run an Ironman? Not at all! Anybody that knows anything about my life knows this is the dumbest time yet to try and commit to training that much. Recently a single parent, just started a new business and relocated 700 miles with no support system. But I want it, so I'm choosing to make it a priority. I will adjust my schedule and life accordingly, accept the fact that it will be difficult and not pretty. Heck my training for races has never been pretty, what's the difference? I'll also start praying a lot harder that I make it through the swim without being pulled from the water by a lifeguard; that actually almost happens every triathlon I run, including that one time I fainted on the beach exiting the water, don't tell my parents about that one. I learned something that day though, when the water is 58' you should wear a wetsuit, no exceptions.

In hindsight, good timing would have been when I was single and had just ran my half IM, or when I was dating/married to somebody that was also a training partner and ran marathons with me and we didn't have kids yet, or when we had kids and everybody was healthy and I had a full support system around me. All of those times, seem like better timing than 2021 for dozens of reasons. But in each of those moments, when thinking about how hard it was going to be; nope, not a good time. When will be good timing for me to run an Ironman though? As a single parent, should I plan for when my kids go to college and I'm 54 years old? After college when I'm 60? What will my health be like when I'm 54 or 60? What might happen in the next 14+ years. We have no idea.

There are good and bad things happening to us and around us at all times, many of which are completely out of our control. Life is messy, it always is. If you want something, there is no good timing, there is only action. Go get it. Make a plan, set a schedule and a routine, ask for help if you need to, and just go get it. If you are waiting for life to be calm and quiet and easy to do things, or go after things that you want, you are going to let a lot of great things and a lot of goals pass you by until it's too late. And those, are what people call regrets. Ask an elderly person about their regrets. Not one is going to answer I wish I sat around and worried more. I wish I would have waited a few years to marry your grandma/grandpa. I wish I would have watched more tv (or the news...). If the world and human beings were perfect, there may be such thing as perfect timing, or good timing. They aren't though, and there just isn't. If it's worth it, do the hard things, go get it.

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