Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I'm A Triathlete by Natalie Conte

A funny thing happened not long ago. I was ready to head out for lunch with three friends from the office and it was my turn to drive. As we walked to my car I started to justify why someone else would have to drive this time and I’d take the next turn. There wasn’t much to explain really.

I'm a Triathlete.

My friends and family understand now. My vehicle no longer has room for people. It's an outlandishly large gear bag. That day I happened to have my bike and all it's related gear tucked safely inside along with towels, swim gear, a random pair of running shoes, tissues, jacket, rain gear, Powerade, headbands and 3 extra layers of clothes in preparation for whatever weather condition may arise.
I imagine most triathletes have had a similar experience. Whether you consider yourself a triathlete or a triathlete-in-training, you likely can't go a day without your triathlon way of life sneaking into the rest of your lifestyle.

A typical morning in my home goes something like this: It’s early. The sun hasn’t come up yet. I stumble out of bed and immediately brush my teeth. Clothes are setting on the edge of the bathtub waiting for their workout. Change quickly. Pull hair back. Put on watch. Nevermind. I haven’t taken it off in at least 3 days. I never intend to wear it to bed but inevitably it remains. A quick roll-on of the deodorant and I’m off. It doesn’t take me too long to realize that wasn’t deodorant. It was Body Glide. But a little extra Body Glide never hurt anyone. Why?

I’m a Triathlete.

And thank goodness for triathlon friends. Only amongst friends can we speak so eloquently; “How was your brick? Did you bonk? Did you hear I DNF’d? She must have needed more Gu. It was a rough wave. Doing more Fartlek’s may have helped. Maybe he put the Yanks in wrong. She checked the crank right before she hit the wall. T1 was good till he ran into the Clydesdale. Her tube cracked. I told him to use the cooking spray. Let’s eat.”

This is a very selective community. Not just anyone can participate. Some people wouldn’t even dream of it. But anyone can tri.

I’m a Triathlete. And proud.

Natalie Conte has been a TNT alumni since joining the Disney Marathon team in 2003. She has since been a triathlon participant and mentor and is currently coaching the triathlon team for the 2010 St. Anthony's Triathlon.

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