The 13th month bonuses are in, the malls and shops are on sale, and you’ve got loved ones you need to buy Christmas presents for — that includes yourself as well. *wink*
I could buy myself a new pair of Asics shoes, which would give me free entry to the Condura Skyway Marathon (any distance). I have been exploring different shoe and apparel brands lately and have friends who love the Gel DS Trainer, Gel DS Racer, and Gel Hyperspeed. I’m planning on doing my first open marathon in six years at the Laguna Phuket Marathon in June. My last marathon in 2010 was in a pair of New Balance 1225’s, which have been discontinued. I need a shoe that can give me a comfortable ride during long runs, but is still light enough to race fast in.
And then there’s my bike. After winning my age group in last February’s National Age Group Triathlon Subic, I qualified for the Philippine National Games finals which will be held on February 21, 2016. The finalists will race in the same category as the elite national athletes, which means following ITU rules. The elite race is draft-legal on the bike and disallows the tri cockpit currently on my Ceepo bike. I’m going to need to replace that with drop bars and STI levers at the very least, or go for a new road bike. I wonder, could I get the new Ceepo Mamba model with its sweet new paintjob?
I also want to sign up for just one half distance triathlon next year. Challenge Family has just announced two sweet new races in Southeast Asia: Challenge Kanchanaburi Thailand and Challenge Vietnam. I’m leaning towards the race in Nha Trang, Vietnam at this point because I want to visit a new country next year. Also, the race course looks quite fast and flat and I’d love to break my half-ironman personal record.
But I don’t really need these purchases, and if I had to do without them I would. It is a privilege and a luxury to have the excess calories to burn, water to sweat, and hours to spend swimming, biking, running; I am made aware of that every time I get out onto our roads. Running is already a gift in itself.
What I want to have more of is time to spend with my loved ones — but we can’t buy time. We have to make time. As the exercise-obsessed athletes we are, we devote huge blocks of our available hours to training as we prepare for the next race. That’s why this time of year you should be more flexible in your workout sessions, especially when it means you get to spend more time with family who are home for the holidays, or hang out with friends who miss you. You can always regain your fitness. You can’t regain the time you lose being away from those you love.
All I want for Christmas is to sit down with my young nephew and read Run, Dad, Run to him and maybe influence him to become a runner. ;) All I want for Christmas is to gather around a dining table with my huge extended family and eat and laugh and eat some more. All I want for Christmas is to remember that it’s not about the material presents we all receive; it’s about that most important gift of our redemption through Christ and the kind of life I need to live because of it.