40 for 40 – A Year of (Type II) Fun

For the better part of three years I have been stressing about turning 40. “When you’re old like me,” I would tell the kids, “you want to be healthy. You don’t want to end up hobbling around and broken.”

Even as the words would come tumbling out of my mouth, a little voice would wonder: Do I really think I am all that old? Really?
The aches & pains in my body seemed to say yes. And I wasn’t enjoying feeling old.

But I also knew this fundamental tenet of (sport) psychology: whatever you tell yourself becomes true.

I wanted to feel younger. So, I needed to act younger, and in order to do that I needed to think younger. How could I convince my mind that I wasn’t as geriatric as I felt?

Step one: I made an appointment with one of my physical therapists. I recited the litany of pains, and she said, “Oh my, Kelly, that’s quite a list!” But she gamely set about fixing my body (and my head).

In a matter of months I felt decades younger and vowed I would stop telling the kids I was old.
And then……feeling more like my youthful self….I did the only thing an athletic-over-achiever might do when approaching a milestone birthday.

I came up with an ambitious, borderline-impossible athletic goal which would take up hours and hours of my time and a huge chunk of my mental energy. (Because, let’s be honest, these are not times when I want to sit around and contemplate how wonderful the world is.)
The goal? Enter and complete 40 events in one year. Running, swim meets, triathlons, (metric) century rides, adventure racing – whatever sounds like fun.

It won’t be easy mostly because of logistics – there are only 52 weeks in a year, and 14 of them are taken up by the high school swim season, which seriously hampers my ability to be a weekend warrior.

I’m also not allowed to take this too seriously. No crazy long distances, no need to get too competitive. The goal is to do all them with friends.

Follow along here, and message me if you want to join in. The fun is just beginning.

Old? Not this lady. Not yet, anyway.

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