Have you ever just stared into a mirror? I mean really REALLY stared. Past the flaws you see in yourself - like the new zit on my chin, or the fact that my belly is showing the self pity ice cream I have been eating; but really REALLY look at yourself.
Something happened today at the gym. I was power walking listening to my new favorite song, Sweet Disposition by The Temper Trap; and I just wanted to run. So I ran. Only for 10 minutes, but it felt so good. And as I stared at myself, checked on form (ignoring the jiggle), I realized I can do this. I don't mean finish the Ironman, there are so many factors that I can not control - the weather is currently calling for scattered showers, people are stupid and might drop a water bottle in front of me, I might get a flat that rips the tire and not just the tube, etc. But this feeling came over me today that I CAN DO THIS! Which is very different than I WILL do this. And it made me smile.
I started to think about the first one. Getting into the water and seeing everyone around Monona Terrace. Running up the helix to the cheers of my family and friends. Seeing my mom on the bike for the first time and stopping to give her a hug. Biking John Nolan drive and seeing Monona Terrace - knowing I would be an Ironman in less than 7 hours. Starting the marathon with my friend Tony. Meeting Gina on the run. When I couldn't feel my legs, seeing my dad, and I suddenly felt light as a feather. Jess not changing her watch to central time and giving me a panic attack (which now just makes me laugh). Rose dancing on the path. Suzie and Rick with their signs. Hear Kristin and Lauren before I saw them. And the incredible, indescribable feeling of the finish.
I am lucky I have had that feeling once. I would love more than anything to have it again. However we all know how the best laid plans turn out... And today on the treadmill, with 10 minutes of power walking, 10 minutes of running, and 10 minutes of power walking, staring deep inside myself, I knew in an instant that I CAN do this. And that means more to me than actually what happens in 9 days.