Saturday, 21 August 2010

August 8th Triathlon

Back in March Richard made the decision to train towards taking part in the Frank Dunn Triathlon at Waskasew.  Before he changed his mind he paid the necessary fee and began training.  He was not able to train with the Triathlon club here in Prince Albert as they were doing all their training on Sunday mornings and of course there is no way for Richard to join them at that time.  I wasn't sure about this new goal of his but it was something for him to aim for.

He spent several hours each week at the gym until the snow was gone and he could once more get his bike out and start riding again.  He had managed last year to ride to Emma Lake and swim then ride back home again which totaled about 120 kilometers biking and about an hour of swimming.  This spring he added running to his training and was up to running 10 K.  The triathlon would require swimming 1.5 K. biking 62 K. and running 13 K.  this would be quite and undertaking for someone who is over weight.

On the Saturday August 7th we took our motor home out to Elk Ridge Recreation Spot and camped over night.  At 6:00 am we packed up and headed the final five miles into Waskasew.  While I fixed a breakfast for myself Richard took his gear over to the pen, transition spot, where his bike and running gear would sit while he took part in the three stages of the Triathlon.  Once he was set he came back to the motor home and collected me and a chair etc. and we walked to where I would have a good view of the swimming.

Richard was one of the few who did not wear a wet suit, this is a picture of him, at least the back view.  He is wearing his heart monitor which was allowed.  Now Richard does not do a crawl when swimming but a side stroke which means he is not very fast and the 1.5 K. swim took him 55 mins. to complete but he was not the last to finish the swim.


This is him about half way point and I figured I had time to go and find a washroom and then find a coffee.  I missed seeing him come out of the water having not yet got back from my coffee and pancakes that I found being served in the community hall.  I did catch up to him at the bike pen though.


Here he is just about ready to set out on the bike portion.  I'm afraid this is the last picture I have as I took video after this shot and as of yet have not loaded it onto the computer but will add anything that has come out later.  Even though he was not the last to set out on the 62 K. bike portion of the race he was the last one to arrive back and so the last to set out on the 13 K run portion.

As 2:00 was getting close I realized that the organizers were beginning to pack everything up and yet still no Richard had arrived back.  Finally one of the volunteers saw me still sitting waiting and asked if I was waiting for someone.  I explained that my husband had not yet arrived back from the run and I was a little worried.  They took time to check with the various water stations along the route and found that he was still  6 K. out.  At that point Richard said a couple of the girls from one of the drink stations began to run (walk) with him along the final stretch of the route...  a vehicle was sent out to see if he wanted to quit and get a ride back but he persevered and kept going.  From that point on they kept me informed of his progress.  When he made his appearance at the edge of the park all the volunteers lined the last few 100 yards and cheered him on.

The race took him 6 hrs and 2 mins. but he completed it and I am proud of him.  The majority of participants in the event were part of teams where only one person does one of the events.  There were only about 30 who did the whole triathlon themselves.  He was the last man to finish but was not truly last as there were a couple of disqualifications and a few who did not finish.

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