It all started back in 2003. I was working on an individual as a PTA when I noticed a tattoo on the back of the calf. Unbeknownst of its origin I researched this sign, and there it was, the Ironman MDot symbol that represents the successful completion of the Ironman long distance triathlon race. So after some questions and many discussions I began my journey.
At my first race in Galena, IL, I had a pair of swim shorts, goggles, a borrowed Trek bike (from the client mentioned above, thank you sir!) and a pair of tennis shoes. The race was glorious and miserable all in one. 2:35:00 later I finished my first sprint. Although the results were less than desirable I was intrigued by what could be possible.
Since Galena, triathlon has taken me to many destinations. With its scenic diversity and the individuals who make up this sport, one can truly find out what they are made of. I have realized a few things since my first race. Apart from the taste of your own limits, triathlon has mainly one goal: connecting the athletes, support crews, and spectators by inspiring experiences and true challenge.
This brings me to my current state. I was referred to Coach Joe by a co-worker who was also enjoying the journey of triathlon. (Thank you for the most excellent referral, Jim, cheers!) My first meeting with Joe I will say was most impactful. He did not try to shake me down to join this club or tell me I needed this kind of bike or to buy these kind of shoes. He asked me, “Why triathlon?” He said, “You know, Tom, triathlon can be lifestyle, a lifestyle that can help define who you are as a person and how you approach life.” This instantly displayed to me that Joe’s focus was on the journey and personal development. Since our first meeting everything has gone beyond my expectations. The Experience Triathlon staff has been most helpful and I am extremely happy to be a part of the team!
I would like to say thank you to Coach Suzy for opening the door of her home for me to pick up my race gear because I waited until the last minute to order!! And Coach Sarah, who essentially PULLED me around my first loop in Madison at ET Summer Camp. Everyone at Experience Triathlon has been extremely supportive and inspiring. I will say that when you Experience Triathlon, boundaries can be broken and inhibitions are blown away.