Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sponsorship has its Privileges

I apologize for the extreme delay in this post.  The last few months have flown by and updating my blog has gotten pushed to the side in favor of other activities that needed to be done.  Because of the delay, instead of the sponsorship announcement that I planned on doing, this post is going to be more of a sponsorship review.

I was honored to be selected as one of Tri to Finish’s 2014 Sponsored Athletes.  When I originally applied for the spot on Team Tri to Finish, I did it because it meant that the registration fees for the majority of my 2014 triathlons would be paid for.  What I didn’t expect was all the other perks that came with being part of the Tri to Finish family.

Holly Rec Fall Triathlon Swim Start - photo credit:  Tri to Finish

 This year marked my ninth year of racing in running events and I have made many friends over the years at various runs.  Triathlons have been a little different, though.  Part of this is because of the volume of races I do.  Prior to this year, I had done a lot fewer triathlons than runs.  I also have “only” been doing triathlons since 2009, 3 years less than running.  A typical tri “season” for me was the Chicago Triathlon and that was it, and it wasn’t local, so anyone I met was unlikely to be someone I would see again.  So, when it came to my triathlons, I very much felt like a loner.  In fact, my friend Lowell, who is the person who coerced me into my first Chicago triathlon, lives in North Carolina and we haven’t raced together since that first race 5 years ago.  Last year, I did a handful of local races, but not enough to really know anyone else racing around me.

That all changed this year.  As a member of Team Tri to Finish, it was like having an instant family.  I was fortunate enough to compete in 6 Tri to Finish events this year (so far) and each one brought a sea of friendly faces, encouragement on the course, and more fun than I could have imagined.  Even if I wasn’t racing a Tri to Finish event, I was greeted by my Tri to Finish teammates at other local and regional races.  Even if I went to the race by myself, there was always a friendly face there.

Before the Holly Rec Fall Tri with fellow teammates Sara and Kelly - photo credit:  Sara H.

In addition to the camaraderie of my Tri to Finish teammates, I have never been so inspired by a group of people in my life.  They make me want to become a better athlete just by being around them.  Team Tri to Finish includes:

·        New York Marathon qualifiers (for those of you not aware, it is actually harder to qualify for New York than it is to qualify for Boston)
·        Ironmen (2.4 miles swimming, 112 miles biking, 26.2 miles running in less than 17 hours)
·        Athletes training for the Double Anvil next month (a race that covers twice the distance of an Ironman in a mere 36 hours….4.8 miles swimming, 224 miles biking, and 52.4 miles running
·        A paratriathlete that was given 6 months to live 20 years ago, defied the odds, and will most likely be representing the US in Brazil at the ParaOlympics.  I wish I could even come close to finishing a race on my two legs as fast as she can on one!!
·        Athletes who spent their Labor Day weekend biking from Lansing to the Mackinac Bridge (400+ miles) in 4 days over some of Michigan’s hilliest roads….not for a race, just for fun

Those bullet points above make it sound like Team Tri to Finish is a bunch of elites, but it’s not.  There are just as many newbies as there are experienced athletes that make up our team….and no one comes off with the elitist attitude that you would expect from some accomplished athletes.  One of the most inspiring things to me all season was watching two of my teammates walk in a third on Sunday during the run portion of the Holly Rec Triathlon.  The two men are FAST and will be running in the New York Marathon in November, but as soon as they finished, they went back out on the run course to walk in a teammate that was completing her first ever triathlon and was in pain after an extremely tough bike course.  To me, that’s more impressive than the fastest of finish times.

I am honored and humbled to be on a team with all of these fine individuals.

Some of the Team Tri to Finish Athletes - photo credit:  Meaningful Moments

I thank the Tri to Finish organization for selecting me to be on their team and for putting on the highest quality races within the state of Michigan.  In future posts, you’ll see some of their great races highlighted and I hope that everyone reading this considers one of their races in the future.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

I'M BACK!!!!

I hope you're having a great summer!!

I apologize for the extended absence.  Sometimes life gets in the way and it definitely has the last few months.  Over the next few days I plan on posting several blog posts updating the world with what's been going on lately.  Please be patient and stay tuned.

In the meantime, I need to get some packing done for an epic running weekend coming up.  Yes, I realize it is technically tri season, but no bikes or goggles for me this weekend.  My current running mileage record for a 48 hour period is 57.7 miles when I did the San Francisco Marathon last year followed by 31.5 miles at Tracy's Fat Ass the next day.  My plan is to beat that record this weekend.  First up is the Christmas In July race where I plan on doing a warm up 5k followed by the 12 hour race (my first ever time based ultra).  Assuming I am still able to walk after 12 hours straight, I'll be following that up with the 10k Saturday night to keep my legs loose since I have the Rock 'n Roll Chicago Half Marathon bright and early Sunday morning.

If you're interested in following me at Christmas in July, they are planning a live video link which will be available at  Don't expect to see me running by the screen, this weekend is more about endurance than it is about speed.

Check back soon - I have some exciting news to share as soon as I get this weekend's packing complete!