I’m closing in on another Ironman season so doing some reflection. Training for an Ironman isn’t the most safe thing in the world.
- Every time I get in the water, I think about drowning and potential for drowning whether it’s at the pool or at Aquatic Park or at an event. When I swallow some water sometimes I remember that and when I first get in, I remember it.
- The bike is probably the most dangerous because at any time I can get hit by a car for no good reason. I could also just fall off my bike and I do reach 50+ mph on descents. My biggest fear is descending 30-40 mph on my bike and a car swerving to avoid a bicyclist on the other side of the road comes into my lane and we both hit each other.
- The run, well, I’ve almost lost my legs a couple times. People don’t stop at stop signs when they drive, they do what’s called the California rolling stop.
Oh, and I could also die from over exertion, hyponatremia (basically drink too much water and drown my lungs), or just pop my heart from getting my heart rate up to redline (I get pretty close sometimes).
I’m not so cavalier about these things. I’m careful and get pretty scared and do get into some close calls. But, if I’m going to be alive I’m going to be alive and not half-ass or sleep through life. Because for all those near death experiences:
- Being able to swim in the Caribbean (Cayman Islands, Turks & Caicos) and swim and snorkel in Hawaii…pretty cool.
- Doing a 100 mile bike ride with friends in Marin where Levi Leipheimer trains and enjoy the sights, Tomales Bay, Redwood trees, as well as enjoying the Berkeley Hills and other beautiful places in the Bay Area bike…pretty cool.
- And to run through the streets of Oakland and Berkeley and Alameda and wherever and discovering new places to eat, places to shop, enjoying the sights, and just seeing people on the street…pretty cool.
So, I’m actually nearer to death when I don’t swim, bike, run, take risks, and live life.