How Starting a Business is Similar to Training for a Triathlon

Have you ever took on something and then later realized what it really meant? That was me about a month ago. 

Let’s recap: I took this year off of teaching to work part-time so that I could start my business as a life coach. My dreams, following my intuition and knowing my life’s purpose to serve others, allowed me to bravely venture out of my comfort zone and try this new adventure. 

What I had not planned was training for a half Ironman (and my first ever triathlon) this coming June. I have an amazing coach, use part of my time to train and also thoroughly enjoy MOST moments. How could I not? I cycle the Tuscan hills and run anywhere I want. However, it hit me about a month ago - RIGHT IN The FACE. I actually thought about how long the race was...how I may potentially finish a half Ironman in 7-8 hours...

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Usually the one endeavour would be enough for most people, but I’m not most. When I want to do something, I tend to do it. I was not sure how to start either but I took things one step at a time to get to where I am currently at. I am not at the end point in either journey, but I can't deny my progress either. It has taught me some very interesting lessons, including how similar starting a business and training for a triathlon can be. 

That’s right - starting a business is similar to training for a triathlon and here are some reasons why: 

1) They both take determination -  there are mornings I jump out of bed eager to get on the bike and others not so much. On the business side of things, there are equally times I get frustrated with technology and want to give up. But what keeps me going is my 'why' and seeing the progress I am making through this journey. It is leading me to push my boundaries, learn, grow and test new boundaries. I am learning so much about myself and am intrigued on where it can take me. 

My why is the reason I keep going and I continue to go back to this. I am coaching because I want to serve those who are ready to be a badass in life. To watch and support those on their journey is one of the most rewarding sights to behold and be apart of. And why do a triathlon? I've wanted to do one for a long time and had let life get in the way. I wanted to test my boundaries and, as a life coach, I really want to live the life that I encourage others to. This is not just a physical test, but emotional, spiritual and physical. 

2) They both take bravery and courage...or to be a little crazy -  the looks I receive when I say either, ‘I opened a business in Italy,’ or ‘I am going to do a half-Ironman and my goal is 7 hours’ always leaves me smiling. Yes, I am stepping out of my comfort zone, which many think can be crazy, but who wants to stay in the lines? If you want to live the way you want, you need to start colouring outside the lines. Get out there! 

3) They both require you to SHOW UP (and continuing to show up) - I definitely don't get things right the first time around (heck, I could say the same thing about many things in my life), but I do know that just by showing up, I am going to move forward. Sometimes this can be the scariest part but use that bravery and courage to take that step and take a look at what amazing opportunities lay ahead.

4) Practice, practice, practice - After showing up, comes practice. I had a HUGE problem creating videos and putting my face 'out there', but over time it has become a bit easier and even a bit more fun. Sure, I screw up what I might want to say, but I can definitely see how practice and time have led to improvements. As for running - I continue to work on pacing and as much as I struggle with going out too quickly, it is becoming easier with awareness and practice.

5) To have ‘those’ days (aka f**k-it days) - If there is anyone out there that can say that EVERY day has been amazing and worked perfectly, then they are obviously a unicorn. I have definitely hit those days when nothing works...and I mean nothing. This can be when my legs are feeling incredibly sore and I can barely walk down the stairs or when I am trying to work out how to get my scheduling system to work on my website. No matter our intentions and amazing attitude, there are days that we just need to say screw it and give ourselves the permission to let it go.

If there is one thing starting a business and training for a triathlon have taught me, it's that it is never too late to start. It's never too late to take charge of your life, to bring power back into your soul and to inspire others that this is also possible for them. I've lived enough of my life following a path that didn't suit me and now I can honestly say how GOOD I feel about the decisions and choices I am making in my life. And it is all because I chose to follow my intuition to start a business and give a triathlon a go. Who knew how similar and wonderful these things could be.