before the gun is fired…

April 21, 2014 at 4:59 pm 20 comments


she could hear the music fill the air


it’s rhythms infuse her veins.

there was a calling from deep within her psyche

aggressively grabbing


pulling the reins.


she closed her eyes,

harnessed her thoughts,

brought into focus the task at hand –

took a slow deep breath,

clenched her fists real tight


dug her toes deep within the sand.


she stood alone amongst the fold

waiting to break out

– listening –

to an inner voice speaking aloud –

affirmations drowning

her overwhelming self-doubt.




came an instant when sound ceased to exist


the cadence of a beating heart,


every ounce of hunger and fear conjoined

to fight as she waited


the moment of truth

to start…




“Life is like a race which needs to be run,

so get up off of your ass and get it done.”

– Bill McDonald


Ironman Wisconsin 2006

Ironman Wisconsin 2006

Entry filed under: a memory, a moment, athletics, depression, dreams, feelings, goals, human nature, inspiration, life, mental health, motivation, Personal, ponderings, prose, race, reflections, Relationships, thoughts, writing. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , .

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20 Comments Add your own

  • 1. MichelleMarie  |  April 21, 2014 at 5:07 pm

    You go girl! I love the way you describe what it feels like before that gun goes off! So cool! I love this photo of you! You are rockin’ that wet suit! 🙂 Happy Monday!

    • 2. words4jp  |  April 21, 2014 at 8:18 pm

      thank you – i apologize for the *ss word on the quote, but this is how Bill spoke – so if i change his words in anyway shape or form, he will drop down from heaven and kick me in the ass!

      • 3. MichelleMarie  |  April 21, 2014 at 9:24 pm

        Never apologize for quoting someone! My Pa lost his filter towards the end of his life and it got rarer comical his words! 😄

  • 4. hitandrun1964  |  April 21, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Totally! Run on.

  • 6. Neeraj (nekneeraj)  |  April 21, 2014 at 7:36 pm

    This is gorgeous!

    • 7. words4jp  |  April 21, 2014 at 7:47 pm

      Thank you. When I started writing this, I was think about standing in the wings before going on stage, then I became a bit more robust about it – thinking about a race, but honestly, it is truly about life. Stepping outside of oneself – comfort zone….. 😉

      • 8. Neeraj (nekneeraj)  |  April 22, 2014 at 11:19 am

        That is what matters.. stepping out from the comfort zone. 🙂

      • 9. words4jp  |  April 22, 2014 at 11:25 am

        And this is something I am unable to do.

      • 10. Neeraj (nekneeraj)  |  April 22, 2014 at 11:27 am

        We lose only when we accept our defeat. Keep trying!

  • 11. ItMatterstoGrey  |  April 21, 2014 at 7:50 pm

    I love it!

    • 12. words4jp  |  April 21, 2014 at 7:55 pm

      Merci Beaucoup.

  • 13. Jonathan Caswell  |  April 21, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    DEFINITELY WORTH READING…understood it better after the picture at the bottom! EXCELLENT WORK!

    • 14. words4jp  |  April 21, 2014 at 10:24 pm

      I contemplated the title of this piece for a long time and I could not think of anything more direct or relative to what I was speaking of.

      • 15. Jonathan Caswell  |  April 21, 2014 at 10:25 pm

        You did great. 🙂 I’m a little slow this Monday.

      • 16. words4jp  |  April 21, 2014 at 10:29 pm

        Me too:). I am not comfortable using the gun word – just because I realize it conjures a lot if negative ‘stuff’. But it is used as a metaphor – under the gun when time is pressed or a pressure to do something. Yes, a gun is used the start of athletic races, but I feel many times in life I am under pressure by others but mostly the pressure I place on myself. 😉

  • 17. Jonathan Caswell  |  April 21, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:

  • 18. Kirsten  |  April 21, 2014 at 10:35 pm

    The starting gun…a heart pounder! I’m in awe of you whenever I remember that you did this! You are amazing!!!

  • 19. PookyH  |  April 22, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    Oh this is so fabulous. It reminds me of my coxing days in Oxford. We used to do bumps racing, all the boats in a division line up along the bank. You start with a boat’s length between you and the boat in front and the idea is to row so much faster than them than you hit (bump) them before the boat behind does the same to you. It’s very exciting! Before the start, to get everyone lined up right, each cox holds onto a rope held out to them from a marshall on the two path. When the gun is fired your crew start rowing. As a cox you’d extend your arm out as far as you could behind you, so your crew were straining against the rope to give every possible advantage.

    I used to have recurring dreams that I forgot to let go of the rope and that my arm would be dismembered! Such were the power of these dreams that each time the gun fired i would hurl the rope with such passion and effort that I became quite renown (read ‘mocked’) for it!

    Oh those were fun times indeed. It makes side by side regatta racing seem so dull!

  • 20. Brenda  |  April 26, 2014 at 11:27 am

    Ironwoman! Wow!


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