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Happy Birthday to Me

In previous years, my birthday would have been spent inviting friends, family and associates to the gin mill of my choice for happy hour.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

But that part of my birthday celebration will have to wait until after the Keuka Lake triathlon. There's too much work to be done today and there will be plenty of time for a few glasses of wine and some really bad-for-me bar food in a mere two weeks.

Instead, I'm celebrating my birthday with an early morning swim workout and ending it with a Buffalo Triathlon Club brick workout.

Because really, what better way to celebrate your birthday than with swimming 3,000 yards, running three miles, biking 12.5 miles then capping it all off with another mile run?

Sandwiched in between those events will be an interview with Buffalo Bills Brian Moorman and Rian Lindell about their participation in Sunday's Pittsford Triathlon (check The Buffalo News this weekend for that complete story), pancakes with Sherpa and pasta with my parents.

Yeah, it's a full day.

And I'm glad.

I find that birthdays are the best time to make any sort of resolutions. Sure, anyone can make a list at the start of the new year, but birthdays are the start of your new year. It makes the resolutions that much more meaningful when it's about yourself and not part of a mass trend.

So my birthday resolutions include:

1. Strive to be "in the moment." I know it sounds all new-agey, but really, isn't it important to give what you're doing your full attention? If I'm in the pool and start thinking about how I'm going to manage to swim 750 meters in Keuka Lake when the water temperature last I heard was 52 degrees, well, I'm going to panic and clutch the pool gutter with white knuckles. There's no need to think about what's going to happen when I have a task in front of me right now, which is to swim three sets of 500 yards. And if I focus only on that, the swimming in Keuka Lake in cold water will take care of itself when the time comes.

2. Worry less. I know this goes against my genetic makeup and the people who know me best just spit coffee out their nose at the thought of me trying to not worry. I can't necessarily stop it, but I can start to ignore it. Anytime my mind starts to wander to "what if?" I will call on the wizard to bash it out of my skull. Or, you know, just start thinking about happy things, like chocolate milk.

3. Let go of judgments. This falls into the "stop-being-so-hard-on-yourself" category. It includes ignoring the part of my mind that wonders what other people think about me and judges my accomplishments by some outside standard. It also includes letting go of judging other people by comparing myself to them which serves only to screw with both our minds.

It all boils down to one simple request -- be kind to yourself.

And there's no better time to remember that than on your birthday.

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