Over Labor Day weekend, since I had a little extra time on my hands due to a three-day weekend, I decided to work some Team-In-Training fundraisers for my marathon.
Basically, for each hour that you work, Team In Training lets you put $10 towards your marathon fundraising, at a maximum of $150.
I was also interested in seeing how triathlons worked, so I thought that working the Old College Tri in Denton, TX, on Sunday, and the Blackland Triathlon in Plano, TX on Labor Day would be the perfect opportunities.
What I found was that working these races was a lot like working many other races. In the Old College Tri, me and another guy were along the running portion, directing runners in a portion of the path that COULD have been confusing. In the Blackland Triathlon, they put the volunteers along the finish line, handing out info about Team In Training, and trying to get people to sign up.
So, in essence, I didn’t get to see how triathlons – mainly the transitions – worked.
One thing I DID learn, though, was that when you’re getting your numbers before the race starts, they put your age on your left calf muscle, and your race number on your right. Therefore, looking at everyone’s age over and over became an obsession. What I learned were that there weren’t very many people my age competing in Triathlons. At the Old College Tri, there were a few students from the UNT Triathlon team competing, and a few teenagers at both (I think the youngest participant was 11? Can you imagine competing in a triathlon at age 11), but I think the median age of these triathletes had to be about 40.
Which settled it for me: I WILL run a triathalon one day. At least by the time I’m 50.
Aside from the actual Triathlon race itself, The Blackland Tri proved to be the more eventful of the two days. As previously stated, we were manning the Team In Training tent, to pass out brochures. Except that…the tent broke…and went flying about 10 feet in the air. Once we set up the tent, we realized that the wind was blowing at about 15-20 mph, and we didn’t have any stakes to hold the tent in the ground. So we improvised and used two pens (yes…writing pens) that we found in our Swag bag, to hold the tent in the ground. They worked for a while, until the wind started picking up, and as previously stated, picked up the tent and threw it about 10 feet south of us, on top of the bathrooms. The people one tent over from us, from REI Plano let us borrow their extra stakes after we picked the tent up off the ground. That worked too, until a surprise gust of wind took and flipped the tent…while the stakes were still in the ground.
Needless to say that that tent is no more.
The Blackland Tri was also more eventful because it also served as a mini-tweetup. I started following @NaturalRunStore on Twitter after I had the opportunity to hear Patton speak on running at Ignite Dallas:
And after hearing that he was going to be at the Blackland Tri, I took it upon myself to introduce…myself (I PROM that I don’t work for the department of redundancy department). So we had a little talk and tweetup, he gave me a mini running lesson, and let me try on some slick running shoes. My friend @ScottVann bought the shoes right there on the spot. I would have bought them then and there if I didn’t have to eat for the next week (BUT If I had had a choice…those shoes would have won). But when I get some money…
It was also so great seeing so many people with a lot of passion for what they’re doing; these athletes with their passion for sport, keeping in shape, making themselves better, and some for a special cause: Patton with the IMMENSE amount of passion, for not only running, but for social media, helping people, and, dare I say it: happiness.
I need to find out what kind of fiber he’s on, because it’s working.