Friday, March 21, 2008

Pulling Out All the Stops

Black belt tests, marathons, Ironman races, my 21 Run Salute campaign, and now this Evotri contest. What do they all have in common?

They've all taken me WAY outside my comfort zone. I mean, WAY out.

And not just for a few short minutes as when skydiving. We're talking hours, days, weeks and sometimes months of pushing myself to do things that are not only uncomfortable but downright painful, mostly mentally. Second guessing myself as to whether I can do it, asking myself why the hell I'm doing it and wondering whether it's worth it. Shoot, why can't I just have a big blister or something instead? That I know how to deal with.

In fact, fundraising and this contest have been the hardest to me. Really. Training and racing I can do without much prodding, in general. But it's completely against my nature to talk to strangers and ask them for money or votes. Actually, it's completely against my nature to do that even to friends. Family, not as hard, but still not easy. Man, I so wish I was an extrovert!

But it's just the way I am. I'd much rather spar against a 200# gorilla or push myself physically until I puke.

Yes. I. Would.

But there's a reason for me having to do it, I think, besides wanting to meet goals I'd set out to achieve and, in this case, to be on the team. It's because I know suck at asking people, even family members, and especially strangers, for help. Therefore, I've knowingly (perhaps subconsciously) put myself in a position that will force me improve myself. Sound familiar?

No? Well, then obviously you haven't studied my first Evotri video in my side bar :-) (There's line in it that goes something like this: If I don't work on my weaknesses, I'll never get better.)

Damn ... I said it on a YouTube video so now I have to do it ...

And I have. While I want to someday live on an island, I don't want to be one.

But what I did in round #1 of the last contest was obviously not enough. No, I read what TriToBeFunny did in contest #1 and realized I need to pull out all the stops and go way beyond. Like at mile 20 of the Olathe Marathon when my whole body was shutting down from severe dehydration and I was on the verge of dropping out every 10 feet. Like during the last hour of my second black belt test when I thought my ribs were cracked and was sure the next good blow to them would send me to the hospital and make me fail my test. Or the second lap of my Ironman swim when the conditions were so rough that my only focus was on making it back to land safely (and NOT via a boat or jet ski), screw the time cut-off.

That's the type of going beyond I'm talking about. That mental fortitude to keep going or do things that you thought you could never do or perhaps never wanted to do. That thing that allows you to overcome yourself and become the person you want to be.

And now on this last day of voting, I want to take a moment to thank everyone who voted for me, passed on the word to others, and give special shout-outs to those who posted links to me on their blogs and organizations I belong to who've helped with my campaign:

50&DC Marathon Group
Akshaye (NEW!)
Bike Friday YAK Group and Hawaii Chapter
Central Florida Tri Club
Jade Lady
K&K (a private family blog, but a very big family she has!)
Marathon Chris
Petra (NEW!)
Road Warrior
SmithPosts (NEW!)
Track Shack

If I've somehow missed you, please let me know.

And just before I was going to hit the publish button for this post, I got a news flash from Team Evotri:

The voting has been extended to next Friday, March 28th, 11:59PM Pacific Time.

It appears their Evote link code was not working for all the contestants and so they're giving us another week.

Hope you all have a nice holiday weekend. If you happen to think of anyone else you can ask to vote for me, please direct them here. Thanks!!!


Comm's said...

yup. another week outside the comfort zone. have fun.

Maddy said...

I'm going to send a message to some people to get you some more votes!


peter said...

Hey, actually I'm an introvert too but I really liked this post. Great job! I'll vote from every email address I have (I think that's a lot. I don't remember all the passwords though).

Unknown said...

How do we vote again?

ShirleyPerly said...

Hi Terry,

Just send an email to with in the subject line.

Only one vote per person but votes from spouses, kids, friends, etc., all count! Thanks!!

Jim said...

Hooray for you Shirley! I wish more people had the determination and persistence you have. "Taking the path less traveled." All I can say is that 200# gorilla better watch out!

Jade Lady said...

I'm always amazed with your ability to tackle things head on, regardless of your trepidations. Many people would rather steer clear of uncomfortable situations, and so I commend you for your willingness to go against your grain. It builds character!

ShirleyPerly said...

Well, I spent most of my life avoiding things I felt uncomfortable with but think that karate changed a lot of that. There were so many uncomfortable things we did nearly every workout. Now what is more scary is the thought of NOT having done something because I was too scared.

Susan said...

I feel really good about this contest, Shirley! I am behind you all the way!!!

Petraruns said...

Shirley you never fail to amaze and inspire me. What you are doing goes way beyond (very considerable) physical demand - you are really confronting yourself and pushing yourself mentally. You deserve to be on this team and I will link to you now.

akshaye said...

Shirley.. great post!

I passed the link on to some friends. I'll do a post on it this week also. Good luck!

CewTwo said...

You know that I voted! I found some old e-mail addresses that I wasn't using often and used them again, too!

Good luck, Shirley!