Thursday, August 11, 2011

Decision Made

Man, I hate making decisions. Today I made an extremely difficult decision for myself. I was feeling a lot of pressure about it, and I was up against a deadline, and I just had to do it.

I decided not to return to Team Trakkers/Rev3 in 2012.

I'll probably kick myself for that decision as this may be the best opportunity that ever comes around for me as an athlete, but in my heart I know I made the right decision. Here's why...

I really dislike Twitter. I just don't get it. Facebook I get. You actually know the people on Facebook, they're real-life people, so when you make a statement or respond to somebody, you feel like you're having a conversation with them or actually contributing. Twitter moves much quicker than that. To me, it feels like any status you put out there is interrupting somebody's conversation with somebody else. Maybe I'm just not on it enough. And yet, that's where most of my teammates hang out. And Twitter is the reason I feel like not part of this team anymore. Last year I felt warm and accepted and this year I just feel on the outside. I just don't have the time to keep up with all the social media and I don't want to either. I haven't been on Twitter in months and I don't envision myself logging in again.

And then there's the sponsors. I have been on other sponsored teams where you are basically a billboard for that sponsor. This has not been like that. Our sponsors treat us really well. We get great gear, gadgets, products, and discounts. I really couldn't ask for more. But, I wouldn't define myself as a typical triathlete either. I am not a gearhead. Maybe I spent too many years as a runner before jumping in the triathlon game, but I was pretty set in my ways with what I liked before I switched to tris. I have worn the same running shoes (brand and model) for like 4 or 5 years now. I have found nutrition that works for me. I have been a swimmer all my life and like what I use to remove chlorine from my hair. And although I have sponsors that provide me these things, I'm not using any of it. I like what I like. And I'd like to tell others what I like and why, a la Steve in a Speedo, but I can't. I will never be a pro and will never get to choose my sponsors, but I am willing to spend my own money on good products that work for me and I want to be able to give those products props for being good.

Finally, and the most important reason why I'm not returning, is that after The Big One!!! in a few weeks I have one more race on the schedule in January and then that's it. I don't intend to put together a race schedule for 2012. I'm not sure I'll even do any races at all. Sure, I'm going to keep swimming and biking and running and getting fit, but there WILL NOT be an ironman or even a half ironman on the schedule. I'm even of thinking of switching from the marathon to the half marathon in January. I want to get some of my speed back and just have fun at some of the local races. I will continue to support Rev3 as I believe in Charlie and his company, but I can't travel all over the place to race or volunteer. Financially, it's just not possible. Plus I have a business to run and it's season is the same as racing season.

I have had a great time being part of this team. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I have met amazing people and have been given opportunities that I'm not worthy of. It's time to move on and pursue other interests. Thank you, thank you, thank you to Carole, Charlie, and my teammates for letting me be part of the ride.


Marcus Grimm said...

I think your rationale is sound.

I totally get 2 and 3. I don't get #1, only because when it comes to social media, I apply your logic about your sponsors: I use what I want when I want and I don't get bothered by things that aren't what I want. Sometimes I'm on Twitter a lot. Sometimes, I'm not for days. No worries either way.

But congrats for thinking it through and coming to a conclusion!

Hollywood said...

I'm glad you thought it through, and didn't just jump to the decision. I'll have to find someone else to watch (jump in after) fall into the water from the dock, then pop up with an ear that's made an escape from the cap. GL on your plans next season, whatever they may be

Jeff - DangleTheCarrot said...

Well that sucks but is completely understandable! I am addicted to the Twitter!

jeff said...

i applaud the decision.

i've always appreciated your product reviews when you've wanted to talk about something you like and that has worked for you and i'm always surprised to hear you say, "no, no one put me up to this and i bought the product with my own money". that is a rarity these days.

if you get a chance to do any reading and you want something a little different, head to the library and get a copy of douglas rushkoff's "program or be programmed". there's quite a bit in there about social media and not letting it dictate how you live.

i hope you have a wonderful 2012, doing things because you want to rather than because you feel obligated. it is very freeing.

Jamie said...

Ugh. This sucks but I totally respect your decision.

The good news is that as long as you don't give up on your blog or Facebook, I'll still hear from you as much as I do with you ON the team. :-)

Melissa C said...

So, is Dave going to try to get a spot? I know you said they wouldn't sponsor both of you.

I totally get where you are coming from with the sponsors. I am just glad I only have to do a certain number for mine, and essentially pick and chose which ones I do for them and which I do for me. I would hate it if I couldn't ride my fabulous BEAUTIFUL trek, so if Kestrel is the bike of choice, I won't be trying for that team any time soon.

Ben said...

I think you make some excellent points. I read so many blogs that will review anything just for the sake of free stuff and to continue growing readership via giveaways. I like that you're sticking to what you believe. Id much rather read this than someone who LOVES every product they are given.

I actually am applying to the Rev3 team this year once it opens in part because I very much like their sponsors. When I was a kid, Avia's were the closest thing to big name/stylish shoes we could afford, and when I was vegetarian I liked that I could find some that had no leather. And I currently ride a Fuji which I love. Fuji is the sister company of Kestrel, both owned by Advanced Sports.

As for twitter, to me it's the place to be. Facebook and twitter have very different behavior patterns, and I think certain types appeal to each. I still use Facebook, but for very different purposes. Facebook is for current and old friends and in depth discussions. Twitter is for new friends and quick hits on hot topics.

Either way, I enjoy reading your blog and will continue to do so. I hope your season in 2012, whatever it is, brings you happiness.