A little over a year ago I finished my first full Ironman race. After the race I wrote here (http://rackertalent.com/rackers/racker-finishes-ironman/) about all the support I received during the race from customers of Rackspace and how encouraging it was throughout the day. A big part of the story I didn’t tell then was how much support I was given from my team here at Rackspace to get me to the starting line. Today, I’m in training mode again for a half Ironman race at the end of October and just like last time, the daily support I receive from Rackspace is a big reason why I’m able to compete. Allow me to explain.
Training for a race like this is incredibly time consuming. A full Ironman will cover 140.6 miles broken up into a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and a 26.2 mile marathon run. A half Ironman is exactly half of those distances. Preparing the body to finish, much less compete for a top placement, in one of these events requires a ton of consistent preparation over a long period of time. Most athletes will train 6 days every week. Four of those days will have 2 separate workouts of at least 1 hour each and at least one of the other days will be a long endurance day (sometimes up to 6 or 7 hours). Many will start their training anywhere from 4 to 6 months before the race and will have the challenge of balancing that training schedule with full time hours at work, a family and other activities. How can anyone balance all of this so that nothing slips behind? At Rackspace, it’s done with a lot of encouragement.
One of the great things about our leadership at Rackspace is they understand that in order for Rackers to volunteer their best every day, we need to truly feel like we’re appreciated and valued. One of the ways that feeling is conveyed is by encouraging every Racker to be themselves – all the time – and to be passionate about the things we’re passionate about – all the time. When we walk in the door, we don’t put on a work personality and leave everything else behind us. A quick stroll through any Rackspace office will showcase our diverse personalities and interests in the clothes we wear, the items we hang from the ceiling above our desks and the extracurricular activities that we continue to enjoy during typical work hours. These differences don’t separate us, they unite us and are celebrated. They are part of the essence of Fanatical Support.
Teams make time for Rackers to get away from their jobs to work on things they enjoy. For some, this could be coding a new application for a personal project, meeting up with other Rackers to raise money for a cause, simply playing table tennis in a break area or going out for a run. Recently, a Racker qualified to race in the Leadville 100 – a 100 mile (incredibly difficult) run over the Colorado Rocky Mountains. In order to become acclimated to the altitude before the race, his team made arrangements to have him work remotely for a while from the area the race would be held in. My personal training for Ironman races has received the same types of encouragement.
This October I’ll be proudly racing with Rackspace logos all over me. I hope I meet customers out there again and am looking forward to demonstrating, once again, how great it is to work with a company that embraces each Racker’s interests and encourages them to make the most of their talents.Category: Rackers Tags: iron man, rackletes, support