A Word About the World, ...World Triathlon Championships 70.3
Honestly feel like I’ve been living in a little dream for a while now… What a world, what a year, what a month, what a day.
And with that said, words of the day: “Vegas Baby, Vegas!”
By this I mean World Championships of the 70.3 distance triathlon, otherwise known as the half ironman distance triathlon of the year. It was held in the one, the only Las Vegas, Nevada. It’s the grand finale of all half ironman distance races.
“Who goes to Vegas in September to race a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, and 13.1 mile run triathlon race in that heat?”
That is the exact question I can’t even begin to say how many times it was asked.
And my response? I say, “Why not? ” Some of us just love to swim, bike and run THAT much. There’s euphoria in the pureness of running free, swimming free, and cycling into breaths of solitude and do so with genuine and pure minded peoples. Simple answer, right? Well kind of. Let me explain briefly: Add a great challenge to the swim, bike, run portion of life, and count me there!
And on a side note, to the much appreciated kind souls and genuine hearts I've ever trained with, this is what I say to you...
Back to the train of thought: it’s an earned right to race this event. It’s also a privilege just to travel to Vegas, yet alone be healthy enough to race. Health is not to be taken for granted. So this race was to be dedicated to none other than my Uncle John (and supporting family) battling every day against Parkinson’s disease. The race also needed to be dedicated to a good man named Paul who passed earlier in the week prior to racing. For these people fight/fought the good fight- the one for living.
The weeks and days leading up to the event, predicted temperatures were to be just above 100 and dry. But something different came our way race day.
Weather forecasters the day prior to the event were talking still hot, but flash floods and chances of sporadic lightning storms...
The morning of the big day, we all wake up to the unexpected. Life is unexpected but you make do with what is thrown your way.
Feeling calm and excited the morning of my race, I embrace the drops of rain tapping on my back and soaking my hair while I wait patiently for the race to begin. The drops were not letting up. They did not let up until I hoped off my bike to begin my run.
The swim section of the race was held in Lake Las Vegas was rough, and by that I don’t mean choppy surface texture rough, but rough as in competitive rough. People were swimming over each other like an ant farm, but as usual, no punches were thrown. Despite, you’ve just got to remain focused and continue onward...
Exiting the water, I hoped on my bike and raced into the National Park of Henderson. Grateful, I saw nor encountered any snakes out there, knowing they would slither into their holes, scared of the rain. This bike course consisted of rolling hills and a few good climbs. Beautiful, in a desert kind of way but I was too focused on handling my bike because crashing in these steady rains would prevent a finish. But as usual, I was in love with every second of the unknown…
Finishing the bike portion of the race, next up came the three loop run course. This run course lacked in flat sections- a perfect course to devistate any runner's legs. Rain disappeared and the heat intensified. Steam off the black tops and pain set in. It was a matter of will as the third loop drew in. As bad as I wanted to, walking is not an option. That third loop just before finishing the race makes any decent athlete quickly find the answers to these questions: What are you made of; how much can your body bare; did your training do you well; and how bad do you want this?
In the end I crossed in 15th place. I’m most certain I did my Uncle John and Paul proud.
Life is just too darn short not to love the world you live, and to live and to love it with meaning.
Some post-race photos of the area just wanting to share...
And the new bridge..
Thanks for reading! Hope you enjoyed!
And please do not forget to check out the very wonderful companies who help make this world possible. They are the ones who know the athlete... Clif Bar, Rudy Project, Salty Coconuts, Reflect Sports, Continental, Alpha Helix, Zensah, Soleo Organics, and Cobb Cycling