Hiya it's been a while. Something that's been on my mind the last couple of months is the practicality of strict adherence to an ideology that one believes is important or cares truly about. When I started this website and blog, I was pretty adamant about my hate for big corporations and my love of privacy. Of course, I still am- I didn't do anything ridiculous like sign up for a Facebook account. But as the last year and a half or so has taken its course, I find the flow of life has taken me to certain places I thought I wouldn't go to. Specifically, I made a Strava account after writing a post about why I don't use Strava. Or how I have a fitness watch, some propietary apps on my phone, etc.
This is mainly because I got more serious about triathlon. The watch is essential for tracking heart rate, GPS activity, pace, power, etc, for just about every workout I do. For my minimalism argument in my post against Strava, this mindset is great for casual runners. If I still was a casual runner, I believe I still wouldn't be tracking anything. However, I don't really see a future of improvement for running without HR and pace zones and polarized training, and none of this is possible without the watch. After all, I didn't make much progress with running before in terms of speed. As for Strava, I hate to say it but there's no better way to keep in touch with random strangers I meet while exercising. It's really great to chat someone up on a run, ask for their Strava, and keep up with which routes they've been hitting. Also I like stalking potential rivals to make sure I'm training more than them hehe. However, the main point of my old post still stands; the runs are for my performance first, Strava second.
More on minimalism- I've also accumulated some things that my old self would have not been happy with. For example, a whole wardrobe of athletic wear (jackets, jerseys, shorts, swim briefs, many pairs of running shoes), some normal wear (race shirts), and a plethora of cycling equipment, including but not limited to two road bikes, a trainer, miscellaneous toolsand fuel, parts, bottles, etc. Even if all my sports expenses are not excessive and carefully calculated, the truth is that I am not as much a minimalist that I used to be. But to me that's OK, because I'm fulfilling goals in another area of my life that's important to me, which wouldn't be possible without the proper equipment. As Marie Kondo would say, keep what sparks joy, and that is precisely what I am doing.
The crux of the argument is this; complete adherence is at odds with a balanced lifestyle. I think that one should be intentional, but not entirely rigid with what rules they set for themselves. I'm not advocating for abandonment of moral principles, but if one portion of your life is at odds with another, you'll have to make a decision or compromise on which matters more to you, and act on that. I've decided that achieving my goals in triathlon are more important to me than 100% adherence to minimalism and privacy. I'll stick to, say, 95% adherence to privacy and 80% adherence to minimalism. I think that's a good enough compromise to have my cake and eat it too. Although this blog is meant for rambling, I think it's time to stop my rambling now.
On a side note, as I mentioned several times in this post, I got into triathlon more seriously this past semester! I joined the triathlon team here at UT, and if you want to see my training log follow the link. Also some updates: