my friend B: do you want to do a triathlon?
me: yep, when is it?
she was a little shocked that I'd agreed so easily. I was a little shocked she wanted to do one. she's a self-proclaimed non-athlete.
but we signed up, and we trained and we started the triathlon.
we planned to celebrate over margaritas afterward. we were in the same wave, but she hung to the back of the pack for the swim. I was in the front, anxious to get in the water and swim the butterflies out.
the ride wasn't too bad, and I kept envisioning a frosty 'rita during the run as my inspiration to finish. I ran through the finish line, extremely proud of simply finishing my first triathlon, and looking forward to celebrating with my friend.
when I got back to the transition area after hanging out near the finish for a little while, B's bike and the rest of her gear were gone.
I knew she would run faster than me. our rides should have been about the same. but I'm a stronger swimmer (swim team since I was a kid). we should have finished up about the same time.
but B was nowhere to be found.
I went back to the finish to hang out with a few other friends that had done the race, then headed home.
I found out she'd blown a tire. she fixed it on the race course, but then blown another. she'd only had one replacement tube. so she walked her bike back to the transition, found her husband and left. she was crushed.
I was hooked.
I signed up again the next year, despite the fact that none of my friends that had done it that first year were entering the race. B was still too disheartened by the blow outs. the others weren't too happy with the crowded course.
I had a different reason for signing up the second year. my grandma had been diagnosed with breast cancer that year. the race supports breast cancer research. I registered and trained with her in mind.
two days before that race, I had a little mis-step getting into the shower. I ended up with a broken nose/concussion/bruised orbital/torn muscle under my shoulder blade.
I was crushed, I so badly wanted to do this race for my grandma. but it just wasn't to be that year.
or the next year.
a couple of months before the triathlon, I was on my way to work, stopped at a stoplight. I got rear-ended and taken to the ER. I had already signed up for the race, but there was no way I could do the race. no way my back and hip could handle it.
this year I signed up again. mostly as an inspiration to get back to training after the car accident. my doc gave me the ok, although she suggested I walk the run. (I'll see how it feels on race day.)
two of my friends from work are doing the triathlon with me. we even talked our company into sponsoring us and donating additional money to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
and although it might be a little painful, I intend to do my best, finish the race, and have fun.
and dedicate the race to my grandma, now a breast cancer survivor, and to her courage and her independence.
if she can overcome breast cancer at the age of 87, I can overcome a little car accident and finish the race on Sunday.
this one's for you Gran, thanks for being an inspiration to me!