In my quest to become a 2-time Ironman, 1 person has stood head and shoulders above everyone else in helping make it happen and I would be a fool to not acknowledge it. The spotlight will be on me on September 7 for Ironman as I bust my butt to get through the 140.6-mile triathlon but the true sacrifice was made by my wife starting the moment I decided to attempt another Ironman.
Being a firefighter’s wife isn’t easy. I am gone 24 hours in a row every 3rd day. Add 4 kids to that mix and you can imagine the amount that she handles at our home without me there. Now add a full time schoolteacher workload to her baggage and the work stuff she does at home, and your head will already start to spin.
When I finished my first Ironman in 2007, we didn’t have 3 out of the 4 kids yet. Things were a little different then they are now. When I came up with the idea of doing Ironman again this year, I asked her what she thought. After the first few moments of pause and the deer in the headlights look, we discussed the financial cost of doing it and then we discussed how I would get all of the training in. That answer was simple. I had to get up early most of the time and she would have to pick up the slack at home while I was gone.
Over the years that Amy and I have been together, I have completed 1 Ironman triathlon in 2007 and several marathons along the way. With the exception of completing the 2006 Chicago Marathon with me, she has been the best cheerleader in the world. I think I failed to explain that she is the most competitive person I know. She was a scholarship soccer player at Northwestern and loves to compete in anything from sports to board games. So knowing how competitive she is, it is an even bigger testament to her sacrifice that she will take a back seat to watching and cheering me at these events.
See, I’m not much of an athlete. God didn’t bless me with much speed or endurance or athletic ability. What he did bless me with is the will to keep going. I have survived a brain tumor, stage 3-colon cancer and a host of other things. On top of that, God blessed me with a smoking beautiful wife who is the greatest cheerleader I could ever have.
Proverbs 18:22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.
The best part of finishing any event that I participate in, is knowing that she is at the finish line for me. It keeps me motivated to keep going knowing I have an Angel waiting for me.
Amy, I can’t thank you enough for making this Ironman attempt possible. I will do my best to make you proud!
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