I always have been one to seek out and conquer challenges. I’m kind of wired that way. Growing in a rural America, swimming was from the end of a ski rope to the boat and a bike was a means of transportation. I took to running early, but never for sport; more recreation. That was my introduction to endurance activities. My interest in triathlons was piqued after watching the Kona race on TV. Now, could I do that…… I’m not a swimmer. Not at all. But, after some swimming encouragement from a tennis buddy, I attended my first meeting and joined up. So starts the journey……
When/Where was your first triathlon?
My first triathlon was the 2016 Innsbruck Octomax. I kid everyone that at Innsbruck, even the lake has hills.
What is your favorite and least favorite gel flavor?
Favorite: I don’t really like any of them. I just tolerate them.
What is your favorite race?
So far, the St. Louis Triathlon.
What is the most challenging moment you’ve had during a race?
My first. Innsbruck. Was nauseous and throwing up for most of the run.
What is your favorite place in or around St. Louis to train?
Around home. I live amongst the hills and flats of the Missouri River bottoms. Flats rides and runs, or continuous hills with grades to 25%. Great variety.
What is the worst food you’ve tried in training or racing and why?
Had dinner with friends the night before a race. Had a burger and fries. Ugh!
What is your favorite thing about triathlon?
Seeing the mental preparations before and during a race play out to success.
What is the one piece of tri-geek gear you can’t live without?
My Garmin 935 watch.
Tip for new (or veteran) triathletes?
I think I offer a unique perspective into achieving success in this. I am, at best, an average high school level athlete. Triathlon accomplishments come much easier to some, not so for others. I am among the “not so” crowd. This is a tremendous amount of work, presenting frequent challenges and constant re-evaluations. Actively encouraging those new to the sport, especially those who are not athletes, that if they keep at it, they’ll be successful is important.
What was your first impression of the triathlon club?
When I walked into my first meeting, I noticed the food table; complete with Oreo cookies and fried chicken. I laughed inside and thought, I’m going to get along with this people just fine.