I tend to be competitive. One of the hardest things for me to do is to turn it off. The other day, I was driving my car from our maintenance yard in Green Bay to the Fox River Trail about 5 miles away. Usually when I run, I set a goal. If I meet or exceed the goal, I win.
On the way to the trail, I got passed. I was going the speed limit in the left hand lane. There was a car speeding behind me in the right hand lane. The right hand lane was ending in a couple hundred feet. My first inclination was to speed up. Protect my space. Win. This driver was being a jerk. They knew that lane ended. They were cheating to get ahead of me. It bothered me, but I slowed down a little.
No where on my usual route is this a bigger challenge than on the Dan Ryan Expressway. EVERY TIME – YOU GET THESE TRUCKS GOING DOWN THE 3RD LANE (WHERE THEY AREN'T SUPPOSED TO BE). THEY KNOW THAT IT IS AN EXIT LANE FOR THE SKY WAY. EVERY TIME, IS SIT THERE IN THE PROPER LANE WHILE THEY PASS. THEY CUT PEOPLE OFF AT THE END. It bothers me. Can you tell? It is hard for me to not fight hard to keep them from getting in front of me. My first inclination is to get real close to the truck in front of me and not let them in. Don't get me wrong. I am not going to sit there at the end and wave these jerks over. I HAVE TO TRY NOT TO PUT THE PUBLIC, MYSELF, OR MY EQUIPMENT IN DANGER IN ORDER TO PUT THESE YAHOOS IN THEIR PLACE. IT ISN'T WORTH IT.
Competition has its place. On the trail that morning, I raced my goal. The trail ha mile markers every tenth of a mile. Even in the urban darkness, you can see them. You can't read them, but you can count them. My goal for the day was to finish 2 miles in under 18:30 while running every step. Then turn around and run/walk my way to 4 miles in under 40 minutes. By the time that I got to the 2 mile point, it was light enough to see my watch. 18:14! I won. I ran .2 miles and walked .1 miles repeatedly on the way back. I got there in 38:55. I won again. Now, to see if I can beat the urge to compete as I head through Chicago on my way to Cincinnati.