Friday, December 18, 2009

Strange week...

This week was strange.  I wrapped up a project in Standish and find myself with very little work on the books for the first time in five years.  This economy has me questioning my desire to continue in a business that has become increasingly difficult to operate in.  It coincides with my father's desire to formally retire.  The business has been very successful but I feel like the wave that has swallowed up so many people is closing in on me as well.  In 2010 I will continue "on my own" and try to find a creative way to remain competitive in a tough construction market.  People are just not spending money like they were a couple of years ago.  I find myself thinking more about what I'd like to do OTHER than what I am currently doing.  It is unfortunate because I have poured my heart and soul into this business for five years.  I hate to let go.  It's not my nature.  I think it is important to do what you love and love what you do.  Right now I'm doing neither.  I am pretty cooked.  So, I have been doing a lot of soul searching and trying to figure out what it is I would like to do or would be good at.  Not a real comfortable spot at age 40.  We met with the accountant today.  He was impressed with our progress in this economy and was helpful with some ideas for tax savings.  I continue to be amazed at how much money I have to earn just to be able to keep a modest amount.  It is unreal.  There is very little room for error.   The better I do the more I pay.  Pretty discouraging.  The best part is I have to go out and re create the wheel every January 1st.  The scoreboard resets and we have to do it all over again, only better.  We'll see how it shakes out.  I think I can say that I will not be talking about this at this time next year.  Something's gotta give.  For now, I'll keep pushing, but I'll never take my eye off the ball.  

The other thing that happened this week is I removed myself from the board of the new Triathlon Club some friends and I were trying to put together.  It was a tough decision for me but I felt as though by offering my opinion I was complicating things.  So, simple solution, step away before making enemies of people I have called friends.  Sometimes these things go like this.  I feel I had a lot to offer and am saddened I won't be contributing. I'll join the club and support their efforts.

On Tuesday there was a horrible crash in Naples .  A UPS driver was killed. The person driving the bucket truck that pushed the UPS truck into the path of an oncoming propane truck, is my neighbor.  The UPS driver left behind a wife, a 12 year old son and 10 year old daughter.  He was 43.  My neighbor works for Time Warner and although he was uninjured, I have not seen him since.  What a tragedy.  It was stated in the news that the police suspected he was "distracted".  If this was the case I believe he'll be facing some charges.  That's nothing compared to the burden he'll carry for taking a life.  I have no idea what to say or do.  I will stop by soon to offer our support.  I also have stopped texting and reading e-mails on my Blackberry while driving.  This could have been me. 

My stepson is home from college for the holidays.  I drove to Manchester to pick him up on Wednesday.  He is 19 and has a lot of maturing to do.  I'm sure the same could be said about me at that age.  He is a good kid and we wish we had more time with him.  Bailey sure loves to see him.
So tomorrow morning at 6am I'll get on my bike/trainer and I'll crawl into a world I know will be the same it was when  left it on Thursday night.  I have six friends coming to work out with me and share some laughs, talk some trash.  It will be the perfect end to what has been an odd week.  

Head down and pushin'

Friday, December 11, 2009


Everybody expects something out of life.  Some expect big things while others are content to stay under the radar.  The former are the ones you read about having performed on a high level or failed miserably.  The latter are the ones you never hear anything about.  It never has made much sense to me to be one of those people that sits on the sidelines and watches life pass by.  I have performed at high levels at times, and I have failed miserably at other times.  But I have LIVED and I continue to.  I always say to my friends that "It's a short trip we're on", this thing called life.  We only get one trip around this track.  I feel fortunate to have realized the finality of that at a fairly young age.  I live every day with these things in my mind.  I will fail miserably again for sure. BUT, in the process I will live and I will learn and hopefully have more triumphs than defeats.  I relate these things to my work life and to my triathlon racing.  Those that work with me or train with me know that I expect as much from them as I do myself.  This trait has been both a positive and a negative at times but for the most part it has served me well.  I like quotes.  One of my personal favorites is...

Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorius triumphs, even though checkered by failure... than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat. 
-Theodore Roosevelt

I love this quote.  I don't plan to have any regrets after my trip around this track.  And I won't be looking for any change back either.


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Motivating the Motivator

So how much do you rely on someone or something else to get you to the starting line?  What can you draw from your training partners?  What do YOU bring to the table in the training partner relationship?  Would you rather motivate someone or BE motivated by someone else?  Are some workouts best done solo?  Do the best athletes do most of their training solo?  Do you get more satisfaction out of a great personal performance or seeing someone else do something they didn't think they could do?  

Who motivates the motivator?

Sunday, December 6, 2009


OK,  can somebody PLEASE tell me how to place photos in my blog?  I upload them and they all go to the top of the page (?).  Frustrating!  And they take forever to load!  Any tips would be appreciated.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Heroes and Role Models...

I bought Ultra Marathon Man Dean Kanazes' newest book a week before I went to Clearwater.  I made myself wait to read it beacause I knew once I started it I would not put it down.  Also, I had hoped it would be a great way to pass the time on the plane and help keep me off my feet on the day before the race.  The book is "5050", Dean's account of his successful bid to run 50 marathons in 50 states in 50 days.  
Now, think about that for a second. FIFTY marathons.  I walk around thinking I am and acting pretty "tough".   I know I am.  I try to be.  If you knock me down I'll get back up.  If you mess with me or someone I love, I'll knock you down and you WON'T get back up.  I have done things that are hard, I have endured testing times personally (like everyone), but 50 CONSECUTIVE marathons?  I sat and tried to think about how I would get through that.  Life is full of regrets.  Dean came trough Portland Maine on his tour and I really wanted to run with him.  I didn't step out of my comfort zone and go down to to Boulevard to run alongside him.  I regret that I missed  that opportunity.  It was one of those things in life I'd do differently.  I'll keep this book.  I'll keep it beside my bed and I'll reach for it when I need a little extra motivation from time to time.  Below is a quote from the book that kind of stayed with me, made me bend the page over and go back to it.  
"While heroes and role models can help us make small steps forward in the never-ending journey of becoming our true selves, they can only take us so far.  Once you pass a certain point in the journey, you have to stop becoming more like the people you admire and start becoming your own unique self."
I'm not sure why this quote made a light bulb go on for me.  All I know is I keep referring back to it.  Maybe it's because I'm getting a little older.  And maybe I'm coming to that point in the journey.
Anyway, it's a great read.  I enjoyed it and am thankful for the motivation I got from it.  It will help me press on the next time I want to throw in the towel.  

Lace 'em up tight, take no prisoners.

Bobby T