Editors note: Three valiant Valley Echo/Pioneer employees, Advertising Sales Consultant Dean Midyette, Acting Editor Nicole Trigg and Publisher Rose-Marie Regitnig decided to pull themselves away from their office desks and participate as a team, aptly called The Echoneers, in this years Heart of the Rockies triathlon. Here are their accounts of the event, and the training or lack thereof that led up to race day.
Weighing in at a svelte two hundred and plenty, my wife suggested that I drop a few pounds before race day but I didnt want to give up the extra buoyancy. After all, I had been swimming 1.5 km five to six times a week in anticipation of the event. In retrospect, I should have listened as shortly after entering the water a Japanese whaler was spotted on the horizon. I should also have been better prepared; most everyone had wet suits (and now I know why) and visibility was minimal (I was expecting to be able to see the swimmers in front of me) so I ended up veering a long way off course.As a result my time was about eight minutes over my goal. As I approached the beach I wasnt focused on the exchange with our cyclist but rather on that famous Seinfeld episode where George goes swimming in a cold lake. Participating in the triathlon was an incredible experience and I cant wait for next year. Nicole, the wristband is yours..
When Dean approached me in the office with the idea of competing in the Heart of the Rockies Triathlon as part of a Valley Echo/Pioneer work team with himself and Rose-Marie, I agreed immediately, probably because the event was far enough away that it didnt seem like a reality. He offered me the road biking segment, and because I had ridden 120 kilometres almost two years ago in the Whistler Gran Fondo, 40 kilometres seemed like hardly any distance at all. Although I dont own a road bike, a friend offered to lend me hers, so it was just a matter of finding the time to do a bit of training. As the days and weeks went by, Dean would raise the topic of the triathlon and the training he was doing for it. But I was finding I never had the time. Work has been extremely busy the last couple of months with Greg Amos away and our editorial team of three handling what normally four people would do in a week. Training? Ill get to it, I kept promising myself.
Suddenly, the triathlon was a week away. By this point, Rose-Marie had also been training religiously. Me? Ill get to it, I kept thinking. I celebrated my birthday just days before the event, on July 11th, and at the little social gathering I had organized for myself, I raised the topic of the triathlon, how I hadnt trained for it, and it was only three days away. The response was unanimous: it was too late, just jump on the bike the day of and ride. It will make for a better story anyway, I was assured.
So I proceeded to do exactly that. When I got on the bike the morning of the triathlon to ride to the staging area, I couldnt remember how to shift the gears. Waking up my friends boyfriend at 6:30 a.m. to get him to show me how elicited an extremely grumpy response, but I got the information I needed and hurried to the starting line. Needless to say, some training would have come in handy at least it would have kept my nerves in check. But apart from getting startled by some horses galloping across Westside Road (did anybody else see them or was I hallucinating?), I had an amazing ride. I perhaps enjoyed myself too much, forgetting at times I was racing against the clock. The weather was perfect, the bike was in mint condition, and I rediscovered my passion for road riding.
It was with no hesitation I first said yes to the the 10-km run of the Heart of The Rockies Triathlon as part of a team with Dean and Nicole. July seemed far enough away to properly train.
It had been a long, busy winter with many working hours, and I had opted out of my morning run far too many times in exchange for some blissful extra hours of sleep. It seemed to make sense that I was in greater need of sleep than running at the time. Perhaps not.
It was when we had about a month left to go before the race, that I had second thoughts about my participation and tried to get out of it. I was regretting all that sleeping-in, and I didnt want to let my team down with poor results. Before now, any races I had done I had done as an individual, and only had myself to answer to, to let down, not teammates.
But, I very quickly got shot down, when I suggested a replacement. My teammate Dean tried everything, including shaming me into it, and it worked. Im now glad I stuck it out and did it. It motivated me to get back into my running regularly again.
It was a glorious-as-they come summer morning at James Chabot beach on race day. Since my run was the last leg of the race, it was quite a relaxing start of the day for me. That was the good part, the not so good part was that by the time it was my turn to race it was later in the morning, so it got hot, and the heat together with the elevation change made the run a bit challenging and definitely not fast, not for me at least. The first 4 km were hilly I thought until the course took us runners up from the lake to The Cottages at Lakeview and up to the highway that took hilly to a whole other level! The run back down to the beach and to the finish felt like a break in comparison. It was great to reach the finish line with my teammates waiting for me. Actually, a lot more fun than racing alone.