The Value of Community

As I am 9 days out from the Hotter n’ Hell, I had to put some thought in this message.

My thoughts centered around how essential a supportive community is with any successful training program or event.

“Every successful individual knows that his or her achievement depends on a community of persons working together” ~ Paul Ryan.

When I hear “community” I immediately think of our United States Special Operations Forces like the Army Special Forces, Navy SEALS, Army Rangers, Air Force Combat Controllers and Pararescue Jumpers, and Marine Corps Recon and MARSOC forces.

These guys live and breathe community.

There’s no other way around it.

To be successful in those environment’s, a Rambo type mentality won’t cut it.

Rambo may be fine for Hollywood, but in reality, this type of person wouldn’t make it through first couple days of training. In reality, less than 15% make it through selection, candidates learn to rely on their teammates creating a sense of brotherhood, and more often times than not their survival will depend on this as well.

Luckily, athletes don’t need to have someone laying cover fire or watching for snipers for them, but we do need to utilize and rely on community to help get us the event we are preparing for.

Training for a century ride, putting in miles to compete in a marathon, swimming, or whatever your event, can be pretty lonely at times so getting a training partner or training group is a great first step.

Spending time on the bike is relatively relaxing, and I use it as a metaphor for life.

On my ride I can cut out the distractions, focus on what’s in front of me and just keep moving forward.

Pretty simple?

However, it can be nice to have a training buddy or group when you’re spending up to five hours on a training ride.

For last year’s HH100, my training partner and I rode together, worked out together, and most importantly finished the race together.

Over those few months of training we figured out how to push each other when the other person needed it, knew when it was time to back off a bit, and when we needed to take a rest.

Great example, there was a point during the Hotter n’ Hell where we had 25 miles left to go and came to one of our rest stops. My riding partner said something to the effect of, “I think I’m done” meaning he had hit the wall and was ready to throw in the towel.

My response was something to the effect of, “fuck that bro, we’ve only got 25 miles left. It’s the same as riding to White Rock and back. Suck it up, we’re finishing this!”

It took a few minutes but he agreed, begrudgingly, and we finished the race.

Was it the time I wanted?


But more importantly we started the race together and we finished together, and regardless of our time, we finished. Sometimes you need that outside voice pushing you on.

Community also includes those around and closest to us.

There is no way I would be able to put in the time and effort with my training without the support of my family.

My wife Christina has been 100% in my corner the entire time, and even though she did not fully understand how much time and effort my training took last year, she definitely understands now since she has been training alongside Brandon and I to get ready for this race.

Talk about an awesome wife!!!!

Now regarding putting together an effective nutritional plan, and it is much easier to stick to a particular eating plan with your family is following the same path.

In years past, would be difficult to stick to my diet plan when I was eating my pathetic salad with 6 oz of chicken and zero croutons, and my wife and daughter was very happily mowing through their latest prize of nachos.


Kaytlyn with her Brown Bag Nacho’s from Brix Bar & Grill

Fast forward 12 months and it has been a 180 degree turn in the Trentham household. Christina and I are on the same eating plan, she is hitting the training studio 3-4 days per week, and we have been putting in the miles weekly.

She is down 60 +lbs from this time last year, can fit into most of Kaytlyn’s clothes and is killing it!!!

Speaking of the other female in the house.

Kaytlyn does not have the same goals as we do; however, she has gone as far as hiding food that she would bring home so we wouldn’t be tempted to snack. I’m talking about those delicious chips, cookies, and candy we would typically dive into.

Considering I did something similar to her when she was in the middle of wrestling season during high school, I guess payback was in order ha!

All joking aside, having a community regardless of a couple training partners, group who schedule a weekly ride, or just a few members of your family to share experiences with, suffer the pains of training, and celebrate with when exceeding a goal has been immensely helpful.

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