I know, I know. I swore to myself that the day would never come.
I’ve been a staunch opponent of triathlons for as long as I can recall for a variety of reasons:
- I’m a terrible swimmer and death by drowning is a distinct possibility.
- Triathlon people are like Crossfit people, aka annoying. This is because they think triathlons and Crossfit respectively are the only true forms of exercise. This is asinine.
- Triathlons involve the purchase of a wetsuit. Wetsuits look good on no one.
- Triathlons are expensive. You have to get a fancy bike that costs millions/thousands of dollars. And a wet suit. And fancy triathlon pants. T-Rex buyz too many plane tickets for this.
- People look like this video at the end of a triathlon.
However, much like Kristen is thinking she now wants to run a marathon because she is constantly surrounded by Marathon Maniacs who are talking about how great it is, I am now thinking I might do a triathlon because stupid Amanda talks about them every five minutes and she’s pretty much the only person I run with anymore since I am in Charleston for work all the time.
I’ve been thinking more and more about triathlons, and I’ve been asked a few times lately when I’ll be doing an Ironman, as if running 2-3 marathons a month isn’t enough. However, I wasn’t fully convinced. Then AJ and I spent this past weekend at Lake Wateree trying to avoid the 108 degree weather that eternally bakes central South Carolina. In a somewhat drunken decision (although you’d be surprised to learn how hard it is to get any kind of drunk in 108 degree weather), his friend Matt and I decided to swim from the sandbar where we were all hanging out over to a rope swing about half a mile away.
Let’s review. Slightly drunk. Half a mile away. Have not swum more than 6 feet since approximately 2006. No problem.
Sweet little AJ kept saying “Babe, this is a really bad idea. It’s farther than you think. Please don’t drown.” But T-Rex doez what T-Rex wantz, especially when T-Rex is mildly intoxicated. I told Matt that this would be good training for my Ironman (what?!) and off we went.
It’s important to note that I don’t put my face in the water when I swim. I don’t like the feeling, and my skin is sensitive. I recognize that this is not the most efficient way to swim, but oh well. Matt had told me he would race me to the rope swing, but I’m not stupid enough to race anyone, anywhere, doing anything. Shortly after we took off, I noticed the pontoon boat pulling out with AJ and the rest of the crew aboard. AJ had decided it was imperative to follow us because we were going to drown at any second. His worrying is adorable, if not totally justified.
All told, we made it to the rope swing just fine, and although we weren’t racing, I actually did beat Matt there through an exceptional combination of pseudo-breaststroke, sidestroke, and a backstroke combined with a frog kick. In case you were wondering, I did indeed used to teach swimming lessons to children. And I got paid for it.
I was pretty pleased with myself until it swiftly occurred to me that the swimming portion of an Ironman is, oh, FIVE TIMES that far. Ugh.
Anyway, I was pretty impressed with my swimming abilities considering I haven’t swam at all in many years. I guess all that marathoning has substantially improved my cardio. So when Amanda started harping on me yesterday about doing a sprint triathlon in August, I didn’t immediately throw a temper tantrum. I actually considered it. And then I decided that it might not be such a bad idea. Maybe it would even improve my fitness. Maybe, just maybe, it would make me
less fat a better runner. So I acquiesced, and I am probably going to do my very first triathlon on August 12 during my month off of marathons.
A sprint triathlon consists of a 600 yard swim, 12 mile bike ride, and 3.1 mile run. The swim is shorter than the one I completed while slightly drunk (btw, swimming really far sobers you up really fast), the bike is short enough to be doable, and the run…well, come on. I will not be purchasing a wetsuit for this event since it’s the middle of August and I would instantly die of heat stroke. I will be borrowing a bike from someone who has extra money to spend on such things. And Amanda and I will be wearing Team T-Rex shirts while competing because it will be awesome.
So, I guess I have made my decision. Do any of you snooty triathletes have any tips for me? Leave me a comment!