Take a Hike: at the MIM Triathlon
Spandex, Speedo's and Sneakers Oh My!
Last week-end Millington, TN's Edmund Orgill Park hosted the 25th annual Memphis in May Triathlon presented by Start 2 Finish Management. I am affectionately dubbing it The Memphis Man Fest 07. Seriously I spent the first 20 minutes or so trying not to look down. I guess because they have to swim, bike, and run, it makes the most sense to wear something suitable for all three but Geeze Louise it was banana wraps (you know, the man sling) as far as the eye could see. I must say these guys had the most beautifully sculpted physiques I've ever seen outside of soft porn on late-night Cinemax. Talk about your well kept secret. I recommend triathlons over Yahoo Personals, hands down. Even if you aren't trying to meet anyone it is a great spectators sport. Who says we can't objectify men every once in a while.
8 good reasons to take a hike:
Um yeah need I say more?
Overall Winner: Chris McCormack
Chris McCormack, of San Diego, CA was yet another of the seemingly endless flow of smokin' hot men. He was also very funny and, well, who can resist an accent. This 5'11 ", 33 year old Aussie native did the tri in 1:47:36; meaningless to me, but he was a really good sport (no pun intended) about letting me get silly pictures of him and he had a really sweet smile. He carb loaded the night before on spaghetti and he said some other really important facts but again (SMOKIN HOT MEN!) I was a bit distracted. I can tell you- he looks great in blue and has the legs of a Greek God.
Women's Pro Division
Laura Tingle, a 23 year old from of Louisville, CO took first place in the women's pro division finishing the triathlon in just 2:02:32. Alisha Lions (pictured above), 26, of Raleigh, NC finished the race in 2:02:35 placing her second. I only had time enough to ask her how she felt about her performance before she was whisked away into the sequestered drug testing tent. Evidently there are people in sports that do drugsCrazy! Don't worry Alisha isn't one of them.
1st Place Male Physically Challenged: Jeff Glasbrenner
Jeff Glasbrenner of Little Rock, AR, age 34, 156lbs with prosthetic, 6'2" ranked 1st place in his division completing the race in 2:25:37. At the age of 8 Jeff lost his leg in a near fatal farming accident.
"My dad and I were mowing the hay and I had jumped off to check the back and he turned the tractor on just a second too soon and it cut my leg clean off."
That hasn't slowed Jeff down a bit. In October he ran the Kona Ironman competition as well as Februarys' Ironman Malaysia.
"My main thing is Wheelchair basketball. I really only got into triathlons as a way to train for basketball, but I love it."
Local Girls Make Good: Cover Girls
Joy Johnson, age 30, of Memphis, TN (cover right) - Placed 3rd in the Overall Female Amateur Challenge. Joy is a Health educator at The Church Health Center on Peabody in Mid-Town where she teaches health and Nutrition. The center also offers healthy cooking classes, diabetes management classes, and smoking cessation classes to Hope and Healing members.
Q. how long have you been competing?
A. for over 7 years
Q. What did you eat before the race?
A. Well, I ate pasta the night before and then a big bowl of Oatmeal in the morning, juice, banana and Gatorade; helps keep your carbs up.
Q. anything special you do before a race for good luck?
A. I always wear the same bright yellow race belt. It's all worn out got safety pins holding it together and it's all stretched out, but I gotta have my race band.
Q. How did you feel about your performance?
A. Good, I had a great swim and I was happy about my bike time, but the run; I was cramping in my leg and I feel like that slowed me down not to mention yesterday I did the mountain bike race so I was tighter and stiffer I think doing two races back to back.
Maggie Finley 34 of Memphis, TN (cover left) placed 2nd in the Overall Women's 30-34 group.
Mother of 3 girls ages 1, 2, &5. YIKES!
"I feel like it's a good example to set for my girls; that it's healthy to be competitive."
She also works part time as a children's occupational therapist at LeBonheur Germantown.
Q. what did you eat for breakfast
A. PB and J
Q. how did you feel about your performance?
A. I was thrilled! I wasn't expecting to do that time. I was expecting to do 2:12 or near there.
Q. What was the hardest part of the course?
A. The run. It's a really hilly coursed but the weather was so nice I can't complain.
Q. What was the easiest part?
A. I don't know that any of it was easy. I would say I was most comfortable on the bike. It wasn't windy so that was nice.
Q. Good luck?
A. Na. I'm not the superstitious type. I just warm up before and do my best.
Q. How long have you been competing?
A. Since 97' with baby breaks.
Maggie is also a member of the LosLoco's Triathlon team based in Memphis.
Darcy Dawson, age 31, Of Chicago IL (cover center) Placed 7th in the Overall Women's 30-34 competition.
Broken Dreams: Phil Wolff
Phil, age 29, drove all the way from Long Island, New York to be in the MIM Triathlon. He'd trained for the past 5 months for this single competition.
"The worst part is that I swam my best time ever. Then 1 mile into the bike course I blew a tire. At first I thought it was a flat so I pumped it back up and tried to go but the tube came out of the split and popped. I just wanna cry you know, butIt's overthere's nothin' I can do."
I had no idea how intense a triathlon would be. I was lost when it came to knowing who was a pro and who was an amateur and trying to catch the names of people you photo as they run past a 30MPH is another mystery but it was fantastic. Really, I was amazed at the ability, endurance, and heart of these athletes. Whether Pro or Amateur one cannot help but respect their dedication to the challenge. From unexpected victories to insufferable defeat, the MIM TRI left everyone with stories they will not soon forget.