You look tired. Of course, you didn’t have to run through soft sand.
The upcoming weekend brings three races:
- I will race at Islandman,
- I will mentor young athletes at Islandkids,
- I will bring aid and comfort to some brave souls who are conquering the dreaded 140.6 in Atlantic City.
This weekend will challenge me in ways I’ve never experienced. It will grind at my body, nay my very soul. It will push me to my breaking point. What I’m trying to say is I’m going to need a lot of donuts.
While his manners could be better, I get it.
Here’s the timeline for the weekend. If you need to step away from the computer for a moment to weep for me, I understand:
- Friday, June 27, evening: For several hours, I will work in Avalon Community Hall at Islandman packet pick-up. I will direct people to registration tables, body mark and check in the Youth Mentors. Between the pleasant banter and the Sharpie fumes, I will become light-headed and woozy. I will probably require IV Vitamin Water or Vita Coco (or whatever beverage Midge had donated.)
- Saturday, June 28, 8:00am: Islandman. I will race. I will curse every living being as I run through soft sand for what seems like miles.
- Saturday, 10:00am: Islandkids. I will station myself in transition and help kids mount and dismount their bikes, don and remove helmets, shoes, socks, etc. My fellow adult triathletes and I will praise and assist smallish triathletes through a shorter version of the adult race. In addition, I will personally be that loud-mouthed Mentor who yells at interfering parents. I relish the role. If your kid is racing at Islandkids, and you are a helicopter parent, just consider me anti-aircraft artillery. You start hovering, and ka-BOOM.
Step away from the transition area, Mom.
- Saturday, 11:00am: I help Midge with awards, which means at times I may serve as a human shield against parents because YOU GAVE MY SON THIRD PLACE AND I WAS COUNTING THE BOYS IN FRONT OF HIM AND I KNOW HE GOT SECOND PLACE. ARE YOU GOING TO FIX THIS? ARE YOU? ARE YOU? Don’t mess with me, Psycho Dad.
- Saturday, 1:00pm. Beers at the Whitebrier. What?
- Sunday, June 29, 12pm-12am: The first ever Challenge Family race in the U.S.A. happens in Atlantic City. A 2.4 mile bay swim, a 112 mile ride through beautiful countryside, then a mere marathon on the AC Boardwalk. I will work the Aid Station at miles 15/19 on the Boardwalk. My local triathlete friends and I are in front of Bally’s Casino, which is nice so we can take blackjack breaks. We will distribute water, sports drink, food, band aids, body glide, peanut M&Ms, rosary beads, hugs, beer, wine, soda, sandwiches, chicken wings (mild or spicy), lobster tail with melted butter, and baked potatoes. Also, we honor all special requests. Challenge AC racers: let me know what you want, and I’ll have it there!
This is going to be EPIC!
By Monday morning, I will be dead.
Slight exaggeration aside, I am looking forward to all of it (minus the soft sand running). Triathlon is crazy and fun because of the people. And this weekend I get to meet a lot of new people who are crazy, just like me. When you share crazy with many others, you feel a little normal.
Good luck to all racers this weekend: sprinters and ultras, adults and kids!
Some photos from Islandman races past:
Always for charity, always for kids!
See? Even National Champions hate the soft sand. Sorry, BDuff. Caught you walking.