It all started when I crashed my bike.
On Tuesday May 18th, right about 11:30am PST, my bicycle and I decided to part ways at about 20 mph coming down a mountain outside of La Honda, CA during our Tour of California Camp. When all was said and done, I ended up with a fractured pelvis and clavicle and a serious detour from my planned 2010 agenda.
The perfectly built, orderly existence that got me from day-to-day took a big hit. The resulting impact taught me just how important a lifestyle beyond what we love to do is to our greater existence.
I was right in the middle of developing Train to Live, Live to Train — part manifesto and part toolkit of resources to build a lifestyle around your passion for fitness. I had been working hard on the project, striving to balance it with all my other professional and personal commitments. And then, suddenly, my life changed. Plans were canceled. Months of building up, trashed.
Now I write to you almost four months later to the day, and I am once again swimming, cycling, and running. I am even contemplating competing again…a far cry from the first few dark days after the accident. But more on this later.
I live my life knowing that things happen for a reason.
In my case, the message was clear. Not only was I not meant to race the Ironman this year (or train for it) but it was time for me to reconnect with the people, places and things outside my tiny bubble of influence.
Immediately after the crash, I had to think of how I’d be getting home, about living out of a wheelchair and hospital bed. My typical outward-focused world view was now laser-focused on taking care of myself and my family. As the video below shows, I spent the better part of the first two weeks just learning to walk again. It was all about survival.
During this difficult time of intense internal focus, I was helped by (literally) hundreds of people. From close family and friends, to members of my online triathlon and marathon communities, to just super nice folks I met aqua-jogging at the YMCA. A fog had lifted, and I could suddenly see and talk to the people who surrounded me on a daily basis.
It was as if the world was conspiring to get me to reconnect with what really mattered.
A Game-Changer for Sure
The effect of this experience, from crash to comeback, totally changed the nature of the Train to Live project. It helped me shift the emphasis from building a lifestyle of fitness to building a sustainable lifestyle — not just one that you can live indefinitely, but more importantly, one that sustains you as well.
Now that the Train to Live (TTL) project is complete, it’s time for me to introduce it to the world. Over a year (and one accident) in development the project is almost ready to go live.
The TTL project is meant to be a resource for athletes of all walks of life, looking to find both higher levels of fitness in their sport, but a higher sense of living awareness…a state that comes when you can connect your passion for exercise to how you live your life on a daily basis.
I want to launch this with a celebration, both of the fact that I am back to being active but also one that connects this fitness (and the book) to the realization that there are bigger forces at work than just the heart beat registering on my watch.
Part of this master plan will be to donate 10% of the sale price of each copy of Train To Live to the Challenged Athletes Foundation in recognition of their efforts to help people experience the joys of competition and exercise that you and I take for granted.
Here is the tentative plan…
Now until early November: Patrick wraps up the TTL guide, magically builds out affiliate program, finishes Endurance Nation trial period, preps for November travel (Florida).
- Nov 1st – Give-Away of Two Ultimate Edition Copies of TTL.
- Nov 3rd – Announce Bonuses for EarlyBird Shoppers.
- Nov 5th – One day, 24-hour launch.
- Nov 6th – Spectate Ironman FL, Announce Donation to CAF, Run 1 mile for every $100 of TTL sold on Friday.
- Nov 7th – Return home, shelled.
Fate Has A Funny Way of Working
Now maybe you haven’t had a life-changing bicycle crash (and I hope you never do), but odds are you’ve had a similar experience. Something that just snapped you out of where you were, entranced, and made you aware of an entirely new universe…one that was always there.
It doesn’t have to be a shock, or external thing that flips your switch. Stop! Look around! What’s going on while you play worker bee #4248943, busily buzzing around completing your multiple to do lists? Every single person you encounter represents a new direction, a different path, huge potential. But all of this is there only if — and it’s a big ONE — IF you are ready to engage them where they are.
Learning to look at the world around you from the perspective of others is not easy. It might only happen for an instant; it might only “work” with a particular person. But know that this “coming up for air” is a gift. It’s not an accident. It’s not a setback. Change is never easy. Do your best to roll with the punches, seeking the opportunity amidst the challenges.
It’s not always about regaining control. Sometimes gaining perspective is that much more important.
The Clock is Ticking
The sale is officially on until midnight of 11/5. Anyone who purchases a guide will save 20% (or more) off the final price and be entered to win a Fuelbelt Backpack or a year’s subscription to RescueTime. I still figure out how I am going to train for the IMFL “double” of spectating and running.
Best of luck with your challenges…I’ll have more for you soon!