A Time to Grow

A Time to Grow

by Jim R.

The Experience Triathlon group shook off the cobwebs of all the off-season training we do during those cold dark days of winter at Galena this last weekend. All those long runs in the cold winter months, all those dark days or evenings in the CT “cave” or our basements, and all those early morning Master’s swim sessions were about to pay dividends in our first race.

You could feel the excitement and anticipation of the beginning of the race season with each person you met. There were huge smiles on everyone’s faces, there was anticipation to a new season, getting reacquainted to friends you hadn’t seen in awhile, and there was a promise of growth in the air, growth as individuals, as a team, and as athletes. For some of us it was our first triathlon and for others it was their tenth but all of us had the vision of being a better person/athlete.  Why else would we endure all the off-season training?  What we didn’t know was that our plans for growth were about to be tested.

Most races in May are usually in the high 60’s at the height of the day.  Saturday, May 19th started at that temperature and just went up from there and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. All the ET athletes were going to be tested; it was a mentally tough day and a good day to grow as an athlete.

Triathlon at its very core is an extreme sport no matter what distance and its participants are a naturally driven group to succeed at whatever they do. This trait in us coupled with the day that presented itself for the Galena Triathlon did not make for winning combination. However without fail we all crossed that finish line with a smile; we all dug deep within ourselves and overcame whatever our personal demons were; we succeeded under very tough conditions; we found untapped strength that maybe we didn’t know we had; we grew as athletes; and we grew as a team and became better people because of it.

“If you can keep your head when all about you Are losing theirs, you can be a winner.” – Anonymous

Again without exception everyone kept their wits about them, correctly adjusted their race plan, and finished the race due to their own personal strengths and the support of the ET Team and Cheer Crew.

I think we all learned a little bit more about ourselves this day and hope we take this learning into our daily lives and future races.

Thanks to the ET Cheer Crew for enduring the day with us, in a lot of ways I think your part is harder than what we as athletes endure, your unending support is always appreciated far more than you’ll ever know and is never taken for granted.

Enjoy all the Galena Triathlon and Duathlon pictures on the ET Photo Gallery.

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  • Thanks so much Jim for sharing your view on Team ET, what we do and why we do it.  Your perspective is inspiring and right on point.  That only if we dare to test ourselves in the most challenging situations, do we get an opportunity to become everything we are meant to become in training, racing and life.  And that when we share these experiences with others, it is priceless.  Congrats again on your breakthrough day at Galena!!

  •  So glad I was able to experience this great day with all of you!  I’ll remember it for many years to come.  Congrats to all the finishers and thank you again to our world-class ET Cheer Crew! 🙂

  •  Well said Drew.  I know you’ve been out there many times in the extreme conditions and push through with success!  Thanks for cheering us on!!

  • Jeff

    Great read, Jim! As if the heat wasn’t enough, some of us have to go and bloody up our feet to make the race more challenging 😉 Good job in Galena. It a the beginning of another great year for you!

  • Thanks for summin it up for all of us, Jim, and for reminding us that this sport is about SOOOOO much more than just our own little race!!!!!

  • Sarah F.

    Nice article, Jim! You sum our beings up well…. A huge congrats to you all on a fantastic day in extreme conditions, and for staying true to yourselves all the while–an accomplishment to be proud of no matter the finish time!! (and on that note, congrats to you, Jim, on your podium finish amongst the grueling heat and bloody feet!!)