My Love Of the Sport

I know I love all three disciplines in triathlon when I don’t want to skip a workout and miss it when I have rest day. Today is my scheduled rest day, well active rest day. I started the morning in the pool practicing my flip turns. Getting my legs tucked in for the flip has been a challenge. The result has been more of a side roll rather that flip. Today I made good progress. I am even considering a late afternoon practice tomorrow, if I have time. After the pool I made my way to the gym treadmills and walked 2.5 miles. It is so tempting to run, but I know my walking is helping my aerobic base and increasing my fat burning ability.

A friend asked me today if I am growing gills yet with all of the swimming I am doing. That is when I realized how much I love swimming, a sport I was by far the worst at and have struggled the most to improve upon. Cycling has always been my strongest sport, I am on a cycling hiatus this winter while I focus first on my swimming and second on maintaining my running base. With the weather improving and reading more blogs on cycling, I am anxious to get back on the bike in April. Running, like swimming, is a sport I have to work hard at to get faster. I have the leg strength, just lack the God given aerobic strength. But like any other muscles, I am strengthening my lungs and heart and I am seeing the improvement.

When I first took up triathlon nearly 13 years ago, I couldn’t say I loved it. I was enjoying the challenge of running and wanted to get faster. I saw triathlon as a mountain I wanted to climb. Along the way I developed such a passion for the sport, I wanted more. My first half iron triathlon was almost ten years ago. I was so burned out from the training, I hung my bike up for almost seven years. I swam a bit during the time off and continued running. I can not say what exactly changed in me the summer of 2009, but I started with a sprint triathlon, my friend caught the bug too and became my training partner, and we have been on a tear ever since. Having a friend to train with is a big help, but we both are individually motivated and keep to our training if we are not able to meet. Now I can not imagine not participating in the sport. If I hadn’t decided to take on the challenge of three disciplines I was not very good at, I would have never found my driving passion. I saw a couple holding hands walking to the swim start at a race last year. Triathlon body markings include the athlete’s age on the back of one calf. They were both 65 years old. I hope I will be doing this at that age and motivating the younger athletes behind me to keep at it.

8 thoughts on “My Love Of the Sport

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  1. What an encouragement. I’ve been running for years, started cycling last year to increase aerobic capacity without overstressing my knees, and just started swimming over the winter. Funny how it seemed like such a huge challenge when I started, but it seems so natural to do all three sports together now.

  2. You are very motivating! I’ve only completed one triathlon and it was an Olympic distance. I was so naive that, when I registered to compete, I had no idea that there were different distance levels so I basically skipped over the sprint by pure ignorance. ๐Ÿ™‚ To hear that you’ve done a 1/2 iron is amazing! I also had a training partner and you are right…having someone else hold you accountable is essential. I never know what in the heck you are talking about when you report your swim distances/times. It is, by far, my worst event. To swim a mile in a lake was quite intimidating to me, but I can now say I’ve done it successfully.

    1. It is amazing what we can do when we put our minds to it. Great job on the Olympic distance! I have only done two, numerous sprints and now a total of three half iron distance. As for my swim times – I am still slow, but I would say I have progressed to the pack pace, just more toward the back. Look out though, by my half iron in September I want to have a swim time most would call “decent”. Thank you for your comment!

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