Friday, September 7, 2012

IM Story #5: A New Team

You may recall that I found a triathlon coach soon after my first successful half Ironman distance race in May. This is Brian Hammond, head of a triathlon team called The Everyday Triathlete. My experience with Brian has been stellar. About a month prior to Ironman, I went to a weekend triathlon camp organized by Brian, his wife Sarah, and partner in Everyday Triathlon, Travis.

Spending time with a group of people who share the same goals and motivations that I have was new and exciting. Instead of being the crazy one who’s training for the Ironman, I fit right in! Whether or not we’re all crazy or not crazy is irrelevant because we’re all in the sport of triathlon together, and that comes with many perks. Namely, a spirit of camaraderie that I’ve sorely missed through most of my time as a triathlete.

Six Everyday Triathlete team members whom I met at camp (Brian K., Chad, Chad, TJ, Dave, William) also raced the Ironman US Championship. Being able to spot others in the same uniform and yell encouragement/hear encouragement yelled at me was an element of racing that I haven’t experienced too much and which I very much appreciated.

Brian K. and I took the same ferry to drop off our bikes. He took this pic!

Brian, Sarah and Travis were even on the course cheering for us! They set up around mile 11 of the bike and were there for what had to have been 6 or 7 hours. Hearing them cheer was a huge boost each time I passed.

Seeing Brian and Travis yards from the finish line totally blew me away. I think I finished well behind the others on the team, and yet they still stayed and cheered me through the end! For that, I will always be grateful. Thanks so much to everyone at The Everyday Triathlete. You helped make my Ironman (triathlon as a whole, really) experience more than I imagined it could be.

Note: Coach Brian and teammate Maura will be racing at the Rev3 Iron distance race in Cedar Point this weekend. Best of luck to both of them!

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