Saturday, March 6, 2010

First of all, let me be clear: I have never been an athlete. In high school, I was the asthmatic girl in the orchestra who took all the science classes. The very idea of having to run in PE sent me into such a frenzy that I would often have an asthma attack BEFORE I even went to class! In college, I tried fencing, was good at it, and got bit by the exercise bug. I loved beating the boys in tournaments, and I eventually became a nationally ranked fencer and competed in tournaments all over the country. But, eventually I had to grow up, finish my degree, live an adult life, and leave fencing behind.

I got married, and after 11 years of marriage had 3 little boys now aged 7 ½, 4 ½, and 2 ½. When I was pregnant with my third son I was sitting in a book club with a bunch of friends. One friend had just had a baby, and another was due any day. One of the (non-pregnant) women mentioned that she was going to be competing in the Danksin triathlon in May. We asked her all about it and decided that it sounded fun. We all decided to train together. The following October, eight of us competed in our first triathlon – we had 25 kids between us, and one of our friends won the whole event! I crossed the finish line last out of my group of eight friends, but I was exhilarated – I had done something really hard for the first time in my life. Training for the triathlon had challenged me in many ways, and I was able to overcome my fears and self-doubt and complete the race. Since then, I have competed in 7 other sprint triathlons, 2 half marathons, a number of 5k and 10k races, and the Ragnar relay – a running relay in which 12 people (some of my tri friends and I) ran from Tampa Bay to Daytona Beach in 36 hours.

I have come a long way since that first race, and I am in probably in the best shape of my life. But, I’m still not an elite athlete – among my group of triathlon club friends, I am often at the back of the pack. I usually finish in about the middle of my age group in most of my races. But it doesn’t matter to me – what matters most to me is how far I’ve come and that I continue to improve. In each race that I enter the only person I’m competing with is myself, and I strive to improve my time over my last race. I plan to continue racing until I’m one of those wiry 80-year-old ladies that pass me running now. My short term goals are to compete in an Olympic-length triathlon and a half Ironman. When my children are older and I have more time to train, I would love to do an Ironman.

I’m living proof that anyone can do a triathlon. I started from the couch after my third caesarian section. I have seen women and men of all body types and all skill levels in the races that I have competed in. I have seen a close friend shed close to a hundred pounds – weight he’s been battling since I knew him in college. In the end, all it takes is the desire to train consistently, and to actually TRI!


We are always looking for inspiration! If you'd like to share your story, email Shirley or use the Contact Us form (see far right column) and she'll get back to you.


migi said...

You go girl!! You definetly inspire and modivate me. You also forgot to mention what a great cheerer/supporter you are to the rest of us. Oh and did you know you were the person who got me hyped up to join to ??? Thank you!

Diane said...

Love the profile! You are an awesome athlete and a great friend! I can't wait to compete in my first tri with you!!!

Anonymous said...

Креатив бывает разным.
В данной подборке креатив на тему воздушных шаров.




[url=]Остальные не влезли в тему :( Смотреть здесь.[/url]

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