This latest article from The Wall Street Journal looks into the life of Jordan Waxman, an Ironman triathlete. With 3 kids, a demanding job and an already full life, he lives triathlon and training with any free time he has. He even missed Mother’s Day for a race.
He’s not divorced, yet, but he’s walking a fine line. The article probably touches a nerve for a lot of athletes, whether they are professional, elite or an age grouper. What’s the right balance for your passion of triathlon and family? Some athletes have such a drive for the sport they give up time with loved ones, put their diet under a microscope, and shun their friends in the quest for that sub-10 hour Ironman or top 3 age group placement.
However, the article’s implication that divorce is on the rise due to the workout phenomenon is a little far-fetched. In a previous article we discussed the population of triathlon. By June 2010, USAT had 134,942 members compared to the U.S. population of 311,925,331 people. That may not represent all of the triathletes out there, but let’s say it’s even 250,000 triathletes. That’s still less than 1 percent of the population. Triathletes that are married are even less of that percentage. To say that less than 1 percent of the U.S. population is swaying the reason for divorce doesn’t really fly.
But make no mistake, it’s real. Jon from the blog SwimCycloRun regales the blog world with stories of how triathlon has affected his personal life. He’s not married and does not have kids, but he does admit that at times, triathlon trumps his girlfriend and is a major driving force in his life.
If you’re married, it is a whole different ball game. Add kids in and you have a new sport altogether. It’s not impossible to get your goals to fit into your life, but you have to figure out what are the big rocks to fill the jar with first, and then the smaller pebbles and the sand that can be poured around it. Consider your priorities and adjust your race and training schedule accordingly.
Ryan Falkenrath writes the blog falkeetriathlon.blogspot.com, and is a married father of 2, owner of 3 dogs and trying to balance life, work and multisport. Ryan has participated in multisport events since 2001. Ryan is also the Kansas Endurance Sports Examiner and you can read more of his triathlon thoughs HERE. Contact Ryan at: firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on @TriJayhawkRyan.
*Expressed opinions are not necessarily that of EverymanTri.com