I am the first to admit I’m not particularly eloquent. I’m more likely to be described as abrasive, aggressive, and impulsive. I’ve been accused of turning everything into a competition. I don’t deny it. I’ve also been called a “heavy hitter” although that was, I think, a compliment. As a result, I think that sometimes, when I share my race reports, they come across as stories of an experienced racer who has forgotten what it’s like to be afraid of failure and doesn’t know how a first-timer feels.
The truth is I’m very afraid of failure and it’s one of the things that drives me so hard and keeps me pushing in a race when the going gets tough. I use that fear to my advantage. But that’s not the point. So let me get to it.
This morning I read my team-mate Claudia’s tale of how she completed a Half Ironman, ignoring those who told her she couldn’t, ignoring the voices in her head that told her she wasn’t prepared, and I realized that this was a great story for those considering a triathlon or just starting out in the sport. There aren’t many things that make me cry but after reading Claudia’s story I was bawling, and I promise it wasn’t because Claudia beat my Austin Half Ironman time by one minute. 😉
Here’s Claudia’s beautiful, amazing story:
My Journey to a Half Ironman
Many of you know my story how I started doing triathlons, but reading one more time does not hurt anybody, one day I was reading the PEOPLE magazine and saw that Jennifer Lopez finished her first triathlon in NY and this words crossed my mind “If Jennifer Lopez did one triathlon I can do one”Â I informed my PRECIOSO (husband),Â that I want to do a triathlon and he said you want to do what???, then I called my mom and told her the same that I will do a triathlon like Jennifer Lopez, my mom said ” Yes but think about it Jennifer Lopez had Nanny, maids, chefs who cook a healthy meal for her, trainer and all the time in her life” while you need to keep your house, kids, husband and cook your self and train by your self. I told her I can do it.
I signed for DOGS DAY SPRINT TRIATHLON in Broadlands 2 years ago, I called my PRECIOSO he was out of town and told him that I signed for my first triathlon ever he said “YOU SIGNED FOR WHAT????, YOU HAVE NOT TRAINED AT ALL AND YOUR TRIATHLON IS IN 5 DAYS HOLY COW!” We join Lifetime Fitness and started my training of course I did not how to swim, I can ride a bike and run but swim that was the hardest thing ever I HAD PANIC TO THE DEEP…. Forget to mention I did not have a bike for the triathlon we bought one road bike…
The day of my first triathlon came, could not sleep at all my hands sweat just thinking that I have to jump in the pool and swim no way I can do that. FinallyÂ I did itÂ but took me : 400 mts swim = 14 min,Â 12 miles on the bike, 46:54min, and 5K running = 28:55min TOTAL = 1 hr :34 min; after all this I went home and I slept the whole afternoon and my legs felt tired.
After the struggle with the swim I decided to take swim lessons ( needed badly), and I join Team TPR ( Team Tri Performance Racing )and train with an AWESOME group of people. I decided to do a Half Ironman (HIM) in Augusta Georgia (peer pressure :o) and start the adventure sorry the training on February of this year, I have no words to thank every one who give me the opportunity to train with them, and believed in me and encouraged me to keep doing this and train for this race. Last Sunday September 30th I completed satisfactory my first HIM = 1.2 miles swimming + 56 miles biking + 13.1 running = 70.3 = HALF IRON MAN and all I did in 5:54 Less than the time I was planning or had in mind. MAKE ME FEEL SO GOOD AND HAPPY AND EVERYTHING
And most important my family, because with out them I am not be here, sorry for the long weekends and my absence some days during my training, now that I finished the race everything was worth LOVE EVERY ONE OF YOU, I do not put names but when you read it you know who you are and also I do not want to forget names.
Thank you PRECIOSO this race means alot for me but you are my EVERYTHING LOVE YOU
Thank you God for everything and for never leave me alone,
Thanks Fionna and Fabrizio
Thanks Mom and Dad
Thanks sisters and brothers
Thank you to every person who has ever told me I cannot. You are just another reason why I will and I did.