With despair in the air, suspicion around, and a world on its knees from a simple (or not so simple) virus, we are definitely not where we thought we would be this time last year.
October 2019 was a time of hope when I was preparing to grace the shores of San Diego, the home of modern triathlon.
Arriving with no plans, but to go with the flow I had the privilege of making connections across a number of triathlon, running and fitness groups in the most random of circumstances.
Indulge me for a minute as these are great memories:
Image by Victoria Palacios
- Training with the Triathlon Club of San Diego in the (sometimes) shark-infested waters of La Jolla bay, as well as competing in an aquathlon with the San Diego University TriClub.
- Running with Milestone Running Shops on their Halloween run followed by a tour of one of the local breweries. There I got to meet a whole host of people including Alex and Kristine which led me to Alex’s...
- ...Tuesday Waterfront Run Crew, additionally I got to meet Iman Wilkerson, some of whom you may recognize from her talk on sport and mental health with me which can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAtLAn0h6Fc
- Iman runs a business in an app called the RunDown which allows people to find running groups in San Diego, as well as take part in virtual exercise - perfect for anyone new to the city; she also hosts a Run Group facilitated by the brand Lululemon.
- I was fortunate enough to attend the Lululemon run group and meet some of the staff from the brand where I got invited to a flat party. Getting back fairly late, I got up and went to...
- ...Climb Cowles Mountain with the ever-so friendly November Project, meeting a number of people including a respected Armed Forces Veteran, a director of Sea World, and of course the mighty Bruce who faithfully leads the way week in and week out.
- A particular highlight for me was the welcome from everyone, a warm community with much love for their city, state and of course the people – I’ve never seen quite so many athletes in one place (bar my current location in Loughborough).
Adapt to survive, and thrive:
These guys epitomise what it is to stay fit and well mentally and physically. During lockdown Iman undertook 100 days of meditation which could be seen on instagram stories, Milestone Running Shop adapted their services and provided a delivery service for running equipment and much needed banter on their social media pages, I'm aware of all the great people I met are showing what it takes to persevere on and are keeping up their daily exercise routines. I know that all of them are keeping fit, well and active.
2020, the year of the 'p' word:
This year is very different due to the pandemic, I had a staycation where I worked on this business TriClub, aiming to support people who want to get into triathlon, running and fitness, as well as those who want to progress on to loftier goals such as PBs and international age group vests. The purpose is quite simple, to help people realise their potential in this sport.
Going out to San Diego helped me realise my potential, it helped me relax physically and mentally from the stresses and strains of work, as well as extend my online and in-person community.
With despair in the air, we need to remember who we are… that we are capable human beings who are able to reach out to someone for a chat or phonecall, go online to find virtual/phone support when we are struggling (116123 for the Samaritans free phone from the UK on landline and mobiles).
This will all be over down the road, there is light at the end of the tunnel, and we have the ability to get out the door and exercise, whether that is a visit to the gym/swimming pool (when they are open), a walk along the street/canal/countryside (dependent on location), or a workout session indoors virtually if we are in lockdown.
You have the ability to be a healthier and happier version of you, the choice though is yours…
Top tips, you've waited long enough:
- Choose to eat healthy
- Get regular sleep
- See friends and family, whether online or in-person
- Start exercising, or keep going with it!
- Stay hydrated
- Talk, talk, talk you will feel better... as Ron Burgundy says...
We're all in this together, we will get through this, and like San Diego, brighter shores are on the horizon. Perseverance produces character, and in turn hope, it won't disappoint.
TriClub Owner & Head Coach
This blog was written to celebrate something different this year, TriClub being a part of the #smallbiz100 with Small Business Saturday. Thank you for your support and remember to shop local where possible.