Racing to Get My Life Back
Why do you race in triathlons?
When I was 9 years old, I was in a snowmobile accident that essentially severed my left foot. Doctors were able to reattach the foot, but I’ve spent the last 40 years in pain. I’ve gone through dozens of surgeries in hopes that eventually my foot would be repaired enough for me to participate in sports again. I finally realized I was missing out on life and decided to electively amputate last fall. Once I was up and moving, I found Dare2Tri.
“I finally realized I was missing out on life.”
Dare2Tri is a non-profit organization that helps physically and visually impaired people try and learn the sport of triathlon. Once I got started, I was hooked. The people and the sport are awesome! I enjoy the multiple disciplines and how they challenge me in new ways every day. The triathlon community has become another family to me.
YWCA Women’s Triathlon was a great first race for me. I felt comfortable in such a diverse group of women — young and old, fast and slow. I was amazed at all of the high-fives and kind words I received from women I didn’t know while I was in transition and on the course. They made me want to keep going. Everyone was so accepting and kind to each other. I saw so many instances of women helping to build the confidence of others.
“I was amazed at all of the high-fives and kind words I received from women… They made me want to keep going.”
How did you find out about YWCA Minneapolis Women’s Triathlon?
My sister watched the event for years and always thought it would be a great race for me, even before my amputation when I wouldn’t dream of doing the whole thing on my own. She originally wanted to do the relay with me this year, but once I decided on having the amputation, she encouraged me to set it as a goal to do it all on my own.
What are some nutrition tips you have for the offseason? For race day?
Hydration, hydration, hydration. More water; less carbonation. That applies every day. And before a race? Don’t eat a big dinner the night before.
How did you make time to train?
I find time to train just like I find time to brush my teeth. It’s got to be done. I prefer evening workouts, but I’ll get up early if I know I don’t have time in the evening. I started a training program on July 1, and the YWCA Women’s Tri was a great way to test out the training I had done up to that point. This whole thing is a work in progress so races aren’t really endpoints for me, they are fun ways to get energized and encourage those around me.
Why do you support YWCA’s mission?
I support YWCA’s mission because the statement embodies everything that I believe the way life should be. We were all put here to live and thrive together. TOGETHER. No one person is better than another. We should all be helping each other to live our best lives.
“We were all put here to live and thrive together.”