For a few years now, I have been biking regularly and periodically running. Back in 2011, I completed the Couch To 5K training program and ran a few 5K’s. Over the next couple of years, the running thing has slacked off a few times and came back. My wife and I ran a few more 5K’s this past year and she smoked me in all of them. I’m more of a cyclist than a runner anyways.
Last April, I signed up to volunteer at an Olympic distance triathlon as a rescue kayaker for the lake swim leg of the event. It was an amazing event and I thought to myself that maybe someday I would be able to do that. I am a great swimmer, but without regular access to a pool, I hadn’t swam in quite some time, except at the beach. Even though I knew I had to get my swimming conditioning back up to speed, I wasn’t worried about the swim as much as I was the run. The Olympic run distance is a 10K. I had always done 5K races and could hardly even do that far.

I did some research and found out that there is a shorter triathlon distance, the sprint distance. It ends with a 5K run. I thought to myself, “I can do that.” The bike portion is less than 20 miles, no problem for me, and the swim is shorter as well. As luck would have it, I found a sprint triathlon that is local, and is at the YMCA that my wife and I are currently members. How sweet is that? I can train in the pool that will be used for the actual event, the biking portion is on roads that I ride all the time, and the 5K run is on the trails that my wife and I jog and take the dogs for their walks. It’s the perfect opportunity for my first Tri. It’s short, local, familiar, and far enough in the future so I have time to prepare.
So I signed up for the All American Sprint Triathlon in Thomasville, NC on April 26th, 2014. It consists of a 250 yard swim, followed by a 13 mile bike ride, and ends with a 5K run. My 10 week training program started Sunday, 2 days ago. I am not going to be able to do the program day for day what it says, but I am going to get in the distances and the durations of exercise recommended. So what if my days are swapped around, depending on pool availability, spin class schedules, and time for the treadmill? The important thing is that I am doing the work and I am going to be ready to Tri.

Today is Day 3. Since the snow is finally melted and the weather is supposed to be 60 by lunchtime, I am going to try to get in a 17-18 mile bike ride in today. I also plan to do spin class tonight, followed by yoga class. I swam 600 yards last night and did a water fitness class also. Things are starting out great. Stay tuned for more updates. Hopefully soon I can run a 5K continuously again, and swim at least 100 yards continuously. It’s a work in progress, but I am psyched for this triathlon and no matter what happens, it will be a PR. 🙂

Simon A.