We created this blog together, but today Carol will be speaking from her perspective. Support is a big element to the “Endurance Couple” equation, and we couldn’t pass this subject without mentioning a few of our experiences.
Well, let’s talk about support. How can I start? I can say that I have been blessed having the most supportive family, and now the most supportive husband. When I was young, my father was transferred to another city, and my mom, my brothers and I all moved to this small city in the suburban of South of Brasil. I was 9 years old, and definitely was not happy with this change. I had my best friends in the city that I was born, my neighbors, and now, we moved and I didn’t know anyone besides my brothers and my parents. Well, this was really, really, the best thing that could ever happened to our family, and the reason why is that at the same time we didn’t have anyone, we had each other, and that became more than ENOUGH. We became the closest family around, we were always together, my brothers and I learned how to play and have fun with each other, and we were always there for each other. Of course with time we got to know people, but that period of having/knowing your family only created a huge base we carry up until today.
Richard will later tell a little bit about his perspective in support, but first I want to share Rich&Carol connection. We met 9 years ago, and as we mentioned before, from day one we were really in love. When we met, I was studying for BAR (OAB) exam, and Richard was going to school for Exercise Science and training, and… did I mention we lived 15hrs driving away from each other? Yes, that’s right. We would see each other every two months, and every “good-bye” was truly hard. Every little money we made we bought tickets to see each other, it was crazy…specially being so in love and making plans to get married, be together forever. So, going through the BAR exam was one of the hardest things I’ve done, and Rich was there for me, from the beginning to the end, to celebration time (yay, I passed!). And, training and trying to become a professional athlete in Brasil wasn’t exactly easy, was tough, but Rich never gave up.
Well, Rich never giving up is almost an understatement, since every person that knows him, knows how hard he tries something and sticks with his guts when he really wants it. He has thought me so many lessons that I could write a book about them, but the point is, besides Rich being an inspiration to me and so many people, the support both of us had, made us believe that we could and would reach ANYTHING.
Having that base, when we became a couple, support was always there for each other. We never gave up on each other, even with the distance, and the difficulties, we always supported the idea of being together and “winning” together. It didn’t matter how crazy, big or impossible a dream or a plan seemed, Rich would always say “It sounds like a great idea…lol”. We worked together, we made it happened. Our backgrounds are totally opposites, but our souls and essences match pretty perfectly and we have been achieving goals and living dreams since we met.
Sometimes, people will not understand your purpose, or even judge your actions…do not pay attention to those people, and don’t judge them either. The support that we are talking about comes from within, comes from a base you have in your childhood, comes from your Mom telling you “Mommy will be always here for you”, comes from your friend or sibling saying “don’t worry, I’ve got your back”, and specially comes from your partner being by your side, every day, every sunny or rainy day, every happy or not so excited day, and pushing you forward. Some people have had that support, I would even say most of the people I know, but some people just don’t pay attention to it. Any kind of support is “a support”, and most of the times people don’t even realize the difference they are making on each others lives.
When I went to Richs second ironman, I felt like the proudest girlfriend in the world!! He didn’t even do closed to the performance he wanted to, but I didn’t care, I was proud to see what he went through to get to that race, and didn’t give up. He was, is, and he will always be my hero!! Up until today, he overwhelms me with emotions when I watch him racing, or coaching people. I am the proudest wife, it may sound corny, but I AM THE PROUDEST WIFE!!! Rich makes me proud every day, and I am pretty sure this is all it matters in life. The lessons I learn, the support I have, and all the love there is around us!!!
Next, Rich will speak a little bit from his perspective on support, but keep in mind he is the most supportive human being I ever met. To be a coach you really have to understand people, and accommodate their needs, and facts. Rich does it all, and although I am also his athlete, in our married life he also goes above and beyond. Every day I try my best to transmit him all the love and support I receive, always remembering how I got where I am now (My family, friends, all the people that supported us from day one when we made this HUGE move from Brasil to USA, and then, to Wellington). Wowwww…I will be forever grateful, and believe me, every support you provide to one another, can seem pointless to you, however it can literally chance people’s life!
Below a video of a little action from me as I was cheering Richard on his ironman, getting out of T2. I was beyond excited, and wanted to hear from him and tell him what to do (like he didn’t know what to do…lol)…I ran, and ran, until I couldn’t keep up anymore…Its all in Portuguese, but basically I was saying: How are you feeling? Don’t run too fast ok? Save energy…lol what do you want on your special needs? Are you sure??? lol