Why Training for an Ironman is Easier than Getting out of Debt

Why Training For An Ironman Is Easier Than Getting Out of DebtAs a kid I was involved with just about every sport available to me. Basketball, softball, tennis, volleyball, swimming, track, gymnastics, baton, and soccer. Over the years I gravitated toward gymnastics and swimming, finally settling on swimming when at age 12. I was far too large and inflexible to be a gymnast.

One of the reasons I gravitated toward swimming was that for the most part it was an individual sport. I liked the way my success was dependent on only me, as were my failures. I only had myself to blame if I didn’t train hard enough and no one else’s outcome was dependent on my decisions.

Years later, I moved into triathlon, another individual sport, for many of the same reasons.

When I am training for a triathlon, I set up a very routine, regimented, specific schedule for swimming, biking, running, eating, sleeping, and recovery. Unless I decide to change something, it is constant and un-changing. In other words I have 100% control over my training. I like that.

Over the years one of my biggest struggles has been finances. In my life everything that involves money is constantly changing. Income, prices of goods, bills, living expenses, accidents, and emergencies.

Add additional people to the mess (friends, family, husband, pets) and it turns into a world of unknowns…which to a person with natural tendencies that include a type A personality and a love for order and control…can get very overwhelming.

Just today our internet bill went up $10, just yesterday our pipes froze in the RV, and with the ever changing price of gas and fruit, how’s a girl supposed to keep to a budget?

So what is the solution? Apparently it’s the same as the solution to 99% of our first-world problems…flexibility, surrender, and that darn serenity prayer.

Grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change
Courage to change the things I can
And the wisdom to know the difference

When I am training for a triathlon I can change pretty much anything if I need to. If it snows, I bike on my trainer, if it’s too cold, I run on the treadmill, if I am sore, I swim, if I am too tired, I rest, and as long as I am paying attention to what I need, I still come out triumphant in the end.

I’m still figuring out how to apply what I have learned in my sports to end up successful in my financial life. Here is what I have so far…

  • It’s a daily practice
  • Be patient (argh)
  • Take baby steps
  • Stay committed to the cause
  • Take breaks if necessary
  • Ask for help (double argh)
  • Trust the process
  • Never give up
  • Stick with the plan
  • Surround myself with supportive positive people

WOW! Looking at that list gives me hope! I may just ROCK THIS yet. I would love any words of wisdom from those who have the financial game mastered.

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