Tried and True

Tri for the Cure: Checkity check. The “Tempe Y Tri Babes” did well and had fun in the process. Positives: my relay partners were prepared, raced hard, and had great attitudes. Negatives: poor race organization. Not only were there swarms of people without the foggiest idea of the course map, transition area rules, etc… but wowie — we started a good 1.5 hours late. This screws everyone up as far as energy (eat breakfast? Don’t eat?) and bathrooms. There were 900 women racing and few facilities. Now imagine 850 of them who are hungry and doing a very cranky pre-race dance standing in bathroom lines.

My eyes: much better. Thank you. And thank goodness for leftover drops because I’ve got another Tempe Town Lake splash and dash in a couple weeks. You can lead this horse to water, and chances are I’m going to jump in and swim, even if the water is gross.

Being in this environment is such a kick. First, there is the people watching. You wouldn’t believe the variety of age, size and physical shape of triathletes, especially in these sprint events. Without a doubt I know I’ll get my ass handed to me by someone 15 and under and someone 65 and older. Competing is good for humility if nothing else. Also, the tattoos! I think triathletes are probably second only to Harley Davidson folk for the number and variety of tattoos clearly labeling their favorite hobby: swim! bike! run! I once wanted an Ironman tat, but I’m reconsidering after the variety I’ve seen. While no doubt they are special, they aren’t unique.

There is nothing else in my routine that motivates me like being around other athletes. I stand up straight and throw my broad shoulders back with pride from the countless swim workouts that created them. I watch with body-confidence envy at the women who sport tri bikinis, for those rocking six packs and those who enjoy a good six pack. I cheer for the newbies and watch the elite athletes in awe. From start to finish, I am overwhelmed with the desire to simply be better. I want to eat smarter, train harder, stretch more and be stronger. I want to compete at the top of the field instead of hanging around the flabby midsection. (Correlation noted.)