Try A TRI!

I just want to share with all of you my latest obsession!  After training for and running in the Chicago Marathon, I decided that as much as I love running long distances, it can get pretty boring and, let’s just face it, it truly is hard on the body.  I began looking for something new I could do to keep my body in shape and also keep me motivated and interested.  I talked to a few friends and did some research and quickly realized that triathlons might be the answer.  As I get older, my main goal is to keep my heart in shape with cardio without losing fat free muscle mass.  This is harder than you think!  The combination of swim, bike, run is perfect for that total body workout.  Everyone I talked to about triathlons said the biggest problem for most triathletes is the swim portion.  Fortunately, this is one of my strengths as I was a competitive swimmer in high school. Although I haven’t been swimming competitively for many years, it is generally a skill that is easy to regain, much like riding a bike.  I decided to go for it and joined a cheap gym in my neighborhood that had a pool and I even bought a triathlon bike from a guy on Craigslist for a total steal.  I got a really nice bike worth about $2000 for $350.  The guy I bought it from had just purchased a brand new $5000 bike for an Ironman he was doing in a few months.  Ironman – yikes!  The bike I bought from him had just been used for a Half Ironman – still yikes!  Those distances are crazy and not ones that I was ready for yet, but maybe someday!  On the advice of some very good articles on the internet, I decided to register for a Tri that was close to home, not too crowded, and had a sprint distance I could handle.  The Lake Geneva Bigfoot Triathlon was the ticket!  A sprint distance is a perfect way to “tri” it out.  It is a half mile swim, about a 12.5 mile bike, and a 5K run or about 3.1 miles.  I persuaded my much reluctant husband to go with me and promised him we could make it a fun weekend just to bribe him a bit.  He is not a strong swimmer but gave in to my wishes.  Long story short……we crushed it!  We trained for about 12 weeks total and we both did very well.  I even placed 6th in my age group.  Granted it was only out of 27 people but, hey, I’m still pretty proud!  I felt amazing afterward and I the best part was that I actually enjoyed the whole thing.  Not at all like the marathon, where I was basically wishing I could chew off my left arm rather than run the final six miles!  I highly recommend trying a tri if you are looking for something different and fun.  To make it more fun, find a workout partner and go for it!

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