"Tagged", I'm It
Tripp at Crosstrains "tagged" me...so here it goes.
1. Describe a memory from your first triathlon ever.
There was nothing like walking --in the dark-- to the transition area. The quiet anticipation and nervousness of that morning is something I'll never forget. As I made that walk...and it was a long walk over a bridge, up a hill and down a road....I remember feeling bit overwhelmed. I had just had emergency surgery to remove my appendix 2 weeks earlier, but didn't want that to deter me from finishing what I had started. I knew I wasn't going to get the time I'd hoped for, but I was going to cross the line. And I did.
2. Describe a memory from your most recent triathlon.
My most recent triathlon was re-doing the first tri I ever completed. I was excited to be doing it with a guy that I'd trained with. Seeing him a few times on the course was great. I loved the excitement of cheering for someone who, I knew, worked hard to make it happen.
On a personal note, it was also a time when I really was able to prove someone wrong. There was a guy in a triathlon group I'm a part of who stood up at one of our meetings and talked about how competition should come before inclusion. It's a point I disagreed with and he made overatures that I was only disagreeing because I couldn't hang with the people being competitive. Mind you, I'm not blazing a trail out there but my competition comes from within. Instead of discussing the virtues about including others in our sport, I left it alone...but it always nagged at me. I saw this same guy before the race but didn't say anything to him. I then found out he was in my age group and we were both Clydes. On the bike, I took great solace blowing past him. On the loop run course, I took even greater pride of saying hi to him — 10 minutes ahead of him on the loop. I didn't say anything to rub it in... I get the feeling I didn't need to.
3. What's the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you in a tri?
I was sucking wind in the run and concentrating on passing the woman in front of me. As I pulled even with her, she struck up a conversation. After telling her I didn't have much gas in the tank but I welcomed her pulling me along...she said no worries, you should have no problem sticking with me until the end, I'm 3 months pregnant. I thought, what???!!!@@@ And if you must know... I was chicked by a pregnant woman that day - by 10 seconds.
4. What's the most thrilling thing that's happened to you in a tri?
I am a horrible swimmer...so getting out of the water — every time — without drowning has to rank pretty high for me.
5. What is something you discovered about yourself by doing triathlons?
I've learned I can do whatever it takes to accomplish a goal I've set for myself. It has given me an outlet at being held accountable for a healthier lifestyle. It's taught me to embrace failure as a building block to do better. It's allowed me to gain confidence. It's given me a chance to explore closer friendships. I've also learned how incredibly supportive people can be in helping you achieve those goals. Whether it's been friends who have driven four hours to surprise me at the finish line of races or my wife who doesn't complain when I leave the house for a long run or ride...I am continually amazed at the support people give so freely.
6. What is The Big Goal that you're working towards?
Half-Ironman. I haven't taken the big plunge in commiting to an upcoming October half ironman, yet, but I'm more than halfway there. When I started running I made the comment to my wife that I only wanted to run so I could finish one of those 5k things. I remember thinking of how "in shape" those people must be to do a 5k. Now training for my second marathon, I laugh at those comments but it all is really about perception. I don't know that I am willing to spend the kind of time away from family that a full Ironman would require...so the Half may be my next Big Goal. (I'm also really wanting to do a Century ride.) But the biggest goal of all would be to find balance in anything I work towards...and that, my friends, will always be a challenge worth mastering.