I have a really old GPS watch – I think it must be between 6 to 7 years old. I have often thought of replacing it, but there are several reasons why I haven’t.
- I am trying to break the cycle in my life of replacing stuff just for the fun of it. It might sound pathetic, but the older I get the more I realize how much crap I have bought during my stay on planet earth.
- The watch has got character. Serious character. It’s got scrapes and scratches that each represent something. Some of the buttons are worn due to a lot of use. The sides of the screen are filed down. (I am not really sure how that happened). And then, there are the scratches on the screen. I had a really bad mountain bike accident a few years ago. I will spare the gory details, save to say that I had to have my nose rebuilt, had 45 stitches to reattach my chin to my jaw and broke 3 hand bones. I was wearing my watch at the time. Both watch and wearer survived. We both still function, and yet both still bear the scars of that moment. My watch reminds me that one can overcome stuff.
- The watch has been worn at Comrades, numerous triathlons, lots of Midmar Mile crossings, lots of half and full marathons, a number of Transbaviaans mountain bike adventures and thousands of hours of training. I tend to train between 300 to 320 times per year. 300 sessions per year over 6 years totals 1800 occasions of my watch trying to find satellites and then marking my movements.
- My watch has been unaware of the thrill I have had as I have passed lots of swimmers, cyclists, and runners while wearing it. The watch has also been unaware of the confusion on my face as lots of swimmers, cyclists and runners have passed me. The only indication that something is going wrong is with my race is the sudden undisciplined spike in heart rate.
I train way more than I race. The reason is simple, I love training. It’s part of my life. My life is less about those herculean days when you lay it all down at a race, but rather training, and having fun doing the mundane. It’s about looking up at clouds, smiling as I hear a bird chirping as I run past. Looking down and gauging my speed and heart rate. That’s the stuff that gets me moving and my watch is part of that.
Enjoy your training. Enjoy your life. Enjoy the epic moments and learn to enjoy the mundane, the everyday.