Honu Envy. Ironman 70.3 in Kona. Yesterday.

This morning I woke and confessed to John my Honu envy. My Try Fitness teammates, and some of the women whom I admire in Hawaii’s triathlon community, participated in yesterday’s half Ironman event in Kona. To me they all look like they are mermaids in the water, wonder women on bicycles, tireless runners on foot. They make it all look easy. They do.

After I swam nearly a mile at Queen’s Beach, where I’ll be swimming in the Tinman next month and the Na Wahine in September, I took it easy while Charlotte enjoyed observing wild sea creatures.

I know when I’m out there running or riding or swimming, the last thing I want is someone to think I am suffering, so I pump up that grimace into a smile. I stroke a little faster in the ocean. So if my friends want to make it all look easy while they are suffering, I refuse to think anything else. If they’re selling it, I’m buying it.

I know whenever I’m in a run, I’m looking forward to its end. I can’t stand being in the Century bicycle rides. A lot of the other riders frustrate me with their obliviousness. And when I was in the Lanikai Triathlon, I almost let myself drown because I was overwhelmed by my pounding heart and by my fear. I’ve declared 2012 the year I Kick My Own Butt, because it’s also the year where I make myself face my fears, deal with them, and come out better in the end. I don’t want to just be a better athlete, but I want to be a better woman, a better wife, a better mom, even a better employee.

I can tell it is working, but I’m only half-way through the year. I also want this adventure to help me build and nurture friendships. I want to build life-long friendships. There are people I want to get to know, there are people I want to get to know better, I want to share experiences with others, I want to build trust and I want to be trusted. Sometimes it feels like I’m all alone, even in a room full of people. When I get the attagirls while running along Kealaolu or riding up Kamiloiki, when my Try Fitness teammates give me a shout out when I’m cresting Kahala Avenue, it reveals to me hidden energy reserves that only a soul connection can tap.

This quest to be the best I can be is not a selfish act. Do you know what I mean?

I also see how much fun people have when they sign up to suffer together. I think to myself how I’d like to be in on all that. So I wake up early and go for a bike ride, I join others after work for a workout at the pool or in the ocean, I ask my husband to join me when I go out and try to run my sorry ass all over East Oahu. I’m building my case for worthiness.