Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Race That Changed It All

Want to win a free entry to this year's Ironman Arizona? Check out Boa's contest here to enter!

Here's my story about the race that changed it all for me, and was probably the beginning of a journey that led to racing 5+ years as a professional triathlete.

My Dad got me into triathlon, and specifically Ironman distance racing. In 2006 we raced my first Ironman together in C'oeur d'Alene. I had a mediocre race and probably would have been happy to have been 1-and-done, but my Dad didn't have a good day and wanted to come back in 2007. Training together had been fun, so we signed up again.

My Dad and I were probably the only two people who had no clue Lake Coeur d'Alene is COLD in the summer and they actually make wetsuits with sleeves on them.

Race day was crazy windy and choppy. I started the swim and made it to the buoy in this picture, where I then held on for a solid 3 minutes and choked up half the lake. I eventually decided there was no future on the buoy and might as well get the stupid swim over with.

I biked for a long time, and spent much of the bike being happy I had actually survived the swim and happy I would not have to swim again for a very long time.

And then I ran a fairly solid marathon for me at that time.

And somehow I earned myself a slot to Kona. I knew enough to realize this was a big deal and I took that slot. And then I was a bit overwhelmed because I realized I had to train for another Ironman in a few months.

Post-race flight home with my parents.

I went to Kona and got hooked, eager to find out just how fast I could get if I worked hard at the sport. I honestly think if I had not earned that Kona slot on a windy June day in 2007 with my Dad, I probably would have moved on from triathlon to another sport and definitely would not have turned pro. It's been an amazing adventure, and very fun sharing it with my Dad.

Share your story about the Race that Changed it All for you and you could win a free entry to Ironman Arizona this fall!