The best part of triathlon is the people. Early on I met some local folks who are very supportive and an important part of my triathlon journey. They inspire me, rally me, keep me honest and piss me off and sometimes that is exactly what I need.
A lot of my training is done during the day when most folks are at work. I run solo and ride and swim solo most of the time. This is good on those mental toughness days when I know I can only rely on myself. Nobody is going to be out there on the trail, the road or the pool to keep me honest.
However, my favorite part of training is when I get together with other triathletes. There is a lake we go to for our open water swims south of Houston. It’s a drive for most of us but the open water experience is important to training. It is at the lake where I have met most of my tri friends and those friendships are the reason I am still doing triathlons.
I met my biggest cheerleader at the lake. One day we were there by ourselves and swam together following the buddy system rule. We were both new to
swimming not drowning. He was just getting into triathlon and had yet to race. We both have a gaggle of children so we know how difficult it is to get training in. He came to my 2nd race. This guy who didn’t really know me stood out in the sun with crazy high temperatures mid June with one of his daughters and cheered me on. We did my third race and his first race together. Now he and my husband ride together just about every weekend. Justin is my own personal pep rally. During training we all have days/weeks when we find it difficult to stay the course and follow the plan. Injuries get in the way, mental and physical exhaustion sets in and let’s not forget about that gaggle of kids and working hard to maintain the balance of life. Justin reminds me why I’m in this sport, the trials we have faced in the past and how we got through them. No matter how down I am about myself or my training I can always count on Justin for a pick me up. Just last night he sent me a note telling me to get pissed off and get after it which is exactly what I needed.