Monday, August 28, 2006

Some Sharing and Tooting…..

Last Saturday, I completed my very first triathlon. Now for some of you this may not seem like much of a feat, but for me this is huge. And I mean huge!!!

So just how did I find myself with 511 much more physically fit people than myself waiting to swim for my life on Saturday morning?

It all started earlier in the spring when my 9 year old daughter and I decided to participate in an after school running program at her school. I have never been a runner and have always admired anyone who could run farther than the distance from couch to fridge.

Our first run was a 5k or 3.1 miles in March. I managed to finish and that was a major accomplishment for me. Most importantly it planted a seed for me that I could do many things if I just set my mind to it and trained. We did a few more races in the spring and then several of my friends and I decided to sign up for a triathlon... Why did I think I could do all of this, you might ask? Well, I knew I could run and I used to bike quite a bit and I figured I could train for the swim. So 10 of us signed up and made plans to train for the summer.

Well, the big day finally arrived last Saturday and frankly…I have to admit I was more than just a little bit scared. My big plans for training never really materialized as the weeks turned into days as the big T loomed ever nearer. My friends and I dubbed ourselves T.I.T.S…triatheletes in training…….and truthfully I did train some and I knew I could do all 3 events. I just didn’t know if I could do them back to back to back…..

We set out Friday evening for the race site, a state park about 50 miles from home. We decided to go the night before so we could pick up our race packets, checkout the course and get a good nights rest. Afterwards four of us went for pizza and a wise-ass competitor sent us over 2 very cold Heinekens….the waitress sent his message to remember we were in training and ½ a beer was ample. Ha….whoever heard of drinking only ½ a beer with pizza.

When we arrived at 7am for an 8 oclock start on Saturday morning, I had my doubts and was really questioning what I had gotten myself into. I can’t tell you how amazed I was at just how fit some of those people were. And interestingly enough….they grease pencil your age onto your left calf. I think this is supposed to make it easier to size up your competition.

With the Black Eyed Peas tune Lets Get It Started Now playing loudly in the background, we all donned our bright orange bathing caps labeling us as novices. And there I was….. down right shaking in my flip-flops…..and when they said “on your mark, get set, go”…..I went, and I went and I went and I went…………I went for 1 hour and 58 minutes and some odd seconds. And I have to tell you it was one of the most fun things I have done in a really long time.

My swim goal was just to not drown and also to beat the 84 year old man that was nipping at my heels. I saw his age on his calf…. The biking was a breeze…my best time of all 3 events …and the run was basically hell. But I did beat my friend Beth and only because she had to pee so badly from all the Gatorade she drank she had to dash behind some trees for relief. It was all pretty hilarious.

I finished 494 out of 512. Not bad for my first time, and I did beat the 84 year old man but not by much.

I am sharing some pics here for you all to see. It was an awesome experience and really deepens my belief in the power of a goal.

Hats off to all of us who attempt something new and challenging!


Blogger jennifer echols said...

WAY TO GO PAMELA!!! I ran my first 10-K last year, and I had a similar experience with a similar 84-year-old man.

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 12:09:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Gina Black said...

GO Pamela GO!! I'm so impressed this is going to motivate me off my duff and onto (what should be) my daily walk. If you can do the tri, I can *at least* do that!

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 12:25:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Bonnie Ferguson said...

Congratulations!!! That's a fantastic achievement :)

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 12:30:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Cindy Procter-King said...

Wow, Pamela, that's impressive. I'm a lousy swimmer, so would never beat the 84-year-old.


Monday, August 28, 2006 at 1:57:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Mel Francis said...

Pamela, you are my goddess. I bow at your greatness.

My idea of a triathalon is drinking a beer while thinking about the fact I should be swimming, biking, and running....

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 2:43:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Lauren Baratz-Logsted said...

Congratulations, Pamela! You rock!!!

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 2:55:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Deidre Knight said...

Okay, not only am I incredibly PROUD OF YOU! These pics are just priceless!!!! Hugs

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 2:58:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Pamela Harty said...

Thanks, everyone. I wasnt really bragging but hoping to inspire.

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 4:54:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Julie Ramsey said...

And inspire you did...

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 5:31:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous pennyoz said...

This morning I heard an interview with Jimmy Connors (tennis player). He's a coach these days and has been working with Roddick (Sp?). He was asked what he would recommend to people who are in other fields. In a nutshell he said the following:

Never have no goal. Whatever you set your mind to, there is no reason that you will not get there if you are determined enough. Never achieve your goal and think that that is it. Always have your next goal prepared so that you can move on quickly to accomplish that.

I thought wow!

I thought that is so appropriate for things like authorship. Don't ever sit around in a writer's funk. Always have something in the small saucepan on the backburner for the times when your brain gets a little tired of the current project. Something that excites you enough to keep the juices flowing while your brain takes a rest.

I must say that the ambition to run ten k's would be level with mowing the lawn or changing the car tyres - which would be equal to visiting the dentist.

But like the Guinness Beer man says:


Monday, August 28, 2006 at 8:24:00 PM EDT  
Blogger M. Green said...

Wow Pamela! What a feat! Triathalons have always scared me, but I would like to someday try a run. Just to prove I can do it, for myself, you know?

Great job!!! Keep it up!

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 9:10:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Marley Gibson said...

I'm extremely impressed with you, Pamela!!! You rock, chica!!

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 9:59:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Natalie Damschroder said...

Pamela, you are totally allowed to brag. My goodness, woman, LOOK AT WHAT YOU DID!

Monday, August 28, 2006 at 11:16:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Lynne Simpson said...

Wow! What an inspiring story! Maybe by this time next year I'll be in good enough shape to start thinking about triathlons. Wouldn't it be cool to do the Ironman in Hawaii?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006 at 1:22:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Shannon McKelden said...

That's incredible, Pamela! Good for you for setting a goal and achieving it. What an inspiration!


Tuesday, August 29, 2006 at 7:37:00 PM EDT  
Blogger MariaGeraci said...

Great pics! Way to go Pamela!

Tuesday, August 29, 2006 at 10:43:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Nalini Singh said...

Wow, Pamela. As a complete non-runner I'm beyond impressed. Congratulations on achieving what you set out to do!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006 at 12:21:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Karmela Johnson said...

My worst and funniest race story? One fall morning, I was in a 5K race after having trained SO HARD all summer long. I thought I was fit. I thought I would do well. I started off confident and in charge.

When the race started, I was in the back of the pack like I always was but didn't think too much of it. I was running, I felt great, thought I was making good time. But then, who do I spot next to me--passing me, no less--than a guy who was speedwalking. He was WALKING, for crying out loud, and he was PASSING ME!

Yep, he finished before I did.

Congratulations Pamela! It sounded like a great time! WTG on finishing and beating the 84-year old guy!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006 at 3:01:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Maureen McGowan said...

Congratulations Pamela!!!! Now I really know I have a superagent!

Thursday, August 31, 2006 at 11:18:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Yasamin said...

wow thats so awesome. Your lucky! I'm one of those people that run like hell and still get nowhere.

Friday, September 1, 2006 at 1:40:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Ovation Leader said...

Just call her IronBelle.

Julie, this is just amazing. And to think all that huffing and puffing came out of such a sweet southern belle. And for your next feat?

Monday, September 4, 2006 at 2:35:00 AM EDT  

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