So, the triathlon. When I first started running, I was kind of overweight and not really very good at it. In my first 5k, which I ran with my brother Daniel, his then-girlfriend Claire (I may have mentioned them once or twice), and a couple friends of theirs, I finished almost last. Not just last in my division, but last. It was great in some ways, because it was a lot of fun to run with everyone, but coming in so close to the end was a bit humiliating. I didn’t run another race for about two years.
I’ve since got to be a much better runner and recently I’ve been placing in the top 20 in my division and much nearer to the top overall. People who have met me AFTER a lot of weight loss and hardcore training seem to have this idea of me as a natural athlete, and that just isn’t the case. I always remember where I used to be…and sometimes, I get to revisit those times.
All in all, I didn’t have a terrible race (except for the swim portion, which was terrifying). I inhaled about half the lake, and coughed for the rest of the day. Despite this, I did finish. Will I do another? I don’t know. I might. I’m off swimming for a while and just relaxing before I have to throw myself into marathon training in earnest. Of course, the purpose of a race is not to win, and how I placed is largely unimportant compared to how I felt during the race. But this was definitely a challenge. I still have somewhat mixed feelings about it. Glad I tried it though.
I should add that in panel 3, that orange pyramid is the buoy I’m supposed to be swimming toward. Panel 5 did actually happen. And I did actually shout “REALLY?” The guy holding the flags to direct us all around the turns didn’t seem to get it.
Here are two photographs Bryan took of me, one before the race, one after the swim portion. For two more fun photos, click the “photos” link at the top of this page and put in my number (1354).