Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Galveston: My favorite part of the race

With Galveston in the books, I've had two days to really think about things.  And before I post my race report, I want to tell you about my favorite part of the whole day.  The course is beautiful, and a top contender for my favorite (tied with Kerrville) and I had a great race.  But that wasn't what made my day so great.

Tanya, Marium, Angela, and Brad accomplished something amazing.

Tanya has nearly a dozen triathlons under her belt, and this was her first half ironman. She and I had been corresponding about nutrition prior to the race, but I hadn't met her yet. I got the chance to meet her after the mandatory athlete meeting.  She'd come down with her sister and her eldest child to participate.  Tanya has three kids and is a very busy mom, so fitting in training and racing is hard, but somehow she makes it work!  I learned a lot from her about Eleanor Rocks, uniforms, and endurance.  Fast forward to race day, Tanya had her chain come off the bike near the end of the bike segment, and had a minor wreck.  She got right back on and finished the race.  I saw her after she finished, and she was still trying to cool off from the race.  But, wow!  Tanya, you did an amazing job. You reminded me of why I race, and as a mom and a triathlete, you are an amazing example for other moms around you.  Thanks for making my race so great!

Marium went out to better her time from last year.  2011 was a hard year for many triathletes, and 2012 was no exception.   But I looked for Marium's results because I knew she had been working hard to improve, and she's training for Ironman Texas.  She improved her half ironman time by 43 minutes.  That is an amazing amount of time, and not easily done.  Angela was also trying to improve her time from last year, and met her goal by a full 20 minutes.  And when it comes to transitions, Angela just smoked through them like she's a pro.  Marium and Angela have full lives outside of triathlon, and sometimes find it difficult to meet all the demands of triathlon and their other responsibilities.  But they did it, and absolutely smashed last year's times.  I wish I could have caught up with you guys after the race.  You two did such an amazing job out there!

And last, but not least, Brad.  This guys is relentless.  Also in training for Ironman Texas, this was a tuneup for him.  But his last half ironman didn't go so well.  He'd had a stomach virus the week before, and wasn't able to have the race he wanted to.  This time was different.  He went out there, and rocked the course, putting in a respectable time.  He completely rewrote his own half ironman race standards.  He's given me a new cycling challenge!

The best part of my race was seeing these four people reach their goals and make some amazing accomplishments.  I take the sport of triathlon for granted sometimes, forgetting how few of the general population participate.  It's easy to dismiss major accomplishments when your perspective doesn't match reality.  When you're surrounded by people who excel at such an awesome leveln(aka: eat triathlon for breakfast) it doesn't take long before perception and reality don't match.

Tanya, Angela, Marium, and Brad did an amazing job on Sunday, and while I know more than one of them expressed disappointment, they stepped up to the starting line.  The courage to start requires more than finishing because sometimes things happen, and finishing the race might become impossible.

True courage is starting down a path, knowing what lies ahead may take more than you have to give.

1 comment:

  1. Great blog! One of my favorite things about doing races and triathlons is hearing the stories of other competitors.