Been thinking a bit today about strengths and weaknesses in sport and how we choose to work on both. It dawned on me today that as athletes, we spend quite a bit of time working on our weaknesses, when many personal development books tell us the opposite, to concentrate more on our strengths. If you are a poor swimmer, you work on your form. If your bike stinks, more saddle time cures it, but if you are a creative/writer type, no one out there recommends you to brute force make yourself an accounting type. So what should you as a runner/triathlete do?
If you were hoping I’d say, “Your a swimmer! Swim more, you’ll be fine.” Prepare to be disappointed. The reality is to be a rounded triathlete or a good runner, there is going to come a time when you have to spend some time working on your dreaded weakness. I know this personally. As I raced yesterday, I realized that had I started working on my weakness 12 years ago when I began triathlon, I’d have been in contention to win. Instead, I got 18th. Don’t get me wrong, 18th is very good and I am not disappointed. It’s just I think I am willing to suffer for the rest of the year to at least finish 17th, but hopefully better (depending on race and field of course).
No one wants to work on their weakness. It sucks. It means admitting you suck and it means doing something when you’d rather be doing other things that you likely enjoy more or at the least can do with less pain. In past posts, I have given clever step by step instructions as to how you can improve. But this time we are going to do this differently.
For me the exercise will be to improve my run. And a lot. I will do the bare minimum in the other 2 sports until the Augusta 70.3 and will either be a running triathlete, or I will be able to stand proud and say I did the work. For you lucky readers, I promise a weekly update on what I am doing, and what I am not so you can bash me or cheer me on. I also encourage you to apply the steps I take in a way that best suits your level of fitness and your specific weakness.
I’d say have fun, but if we are all doing this right, we won’t have fun for awhile-until then suck it up and dbap.
ARGGGHHHH-I can’t help myself. Here are the first three steps.
Step one: Admit that you have a weakness and you are powerless over it (up until now)
Step two: Commit to a plan-3-4 months should be a realistic amount of time to cure what ails us.
Step three: Reach out to someone that knows more than you about your weakness and heed what they tell you.