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November 28 Weekly Update

November 21 Weekly Update

Swimming Gear Checklist

Swimming Gear – Checklist

Rubber duckies are great additions to bath-time, and water-wings and pool noodles are wonderful for a summer afternoon in a backyard pool. Photo Feb 04, 9 56 44 PM

But what swim gear should you buy for a pool workout?

If you are joining us for our coached swims, here is a list of ‘toys’ that we suggest having on hand (links provided for educational purposes).

There are two mandatory pieces:

  • Goggles (because chlorine in the eyes is NOT FUN!)
  • Swim suit (seriously people, no naked swimming in the public pool) – we strongly suggest something a little more streamlined than boardshorts, but the choice is yours

To get the most of your workout, we also suggest the following items:

  • Swim Cap (strongly suggested for people with hair longer than 1 inch long)
  • Fins (we recommend the longer fin version rather than short or split – see example here)
  • Pull Buoy
  • Paddles (if you never used paddles before, we recommend that you start with small ones – these are a good example – S for women, M for men)
  • Band (example of this torture instrument here)
  • Kickboard/Flutterboard (these are usually provided for free at most public pools – but some people like to use their own)
  • Mesh bag (to carry your swim toys around)

 

 

November 14 Weekly Update

November 7 NewsLetter

Curtis’ Laws

“Lessons learned in my first year of triathlon or, Things I Gained in the Fire”.

As a latecomer to the sport after nearly 30 years of sloth (my first sprint tri was earlier this year on June 24, 3 days before my 49th birthday. You do the math. Gift cards to Ye Old Tri Shoppe are welcome.), I thought it might be instructional to do a post-mortem (not quite literally, but close) of my first year in triathlon.

I thought about playing it straight but a) I can’t write that way and b) Zin and Mel and Paul and Matt and, well, just about anyone who trains or races with me, would giggle out loud if I pretended to give serious advice about going fast and I’m-not-going-to-give-them-that-satisfaction so here goes nothing. Well, not nothing, but a couple of “LAWS OF TRIATHLON”.

Law of triathlon number one – it is not as hard as you think it is.

You may not be fast, but with a little dedication, some help and encouragement from a club or a coach, and maybe a little shaming (OK, sometimes it takes a lot of shaming) from your significant other/family/friends after you spend all that money on wetsuits, bikes and other stuff they never knew even existed, you can finish a triathlon. Of some sort. Probably. Eventually.

Corollary to Law One – it is not as easy as you think it is.

Finishing is one thing. Not getting defensive when someone whose grandchildren might be in your age group, swimming in a 70s vintage speedo, riding a penny-farthing bicycle, running in one wooden clog and one flipper wearing a ragged “Wally World” t-shirt, finishes their run as you roll into T2 on your shiny new carbon fibre “Italian Stallion!” will be more difficult. The grandchildren, in the crowd to support ol’ pops, will silently mock you as you limp across the line in your $400 barefoot running shoes and technical (aka “expensive”) tri-suit made by a manufacturer whose name you aren’t quite sure how to pronounce. Train harder. P.s. not saying this happened to me ok it did but I had a cramp I swear.

Law Two – You will hate it.

At some point in the swim you will be sure you are going to die. LAKE ZOMBIES! You will say to yourself “I AM NEVER DOING THIS AGAIN AND IF I SURVIVE I WILL KILL THAN SUMMABICH THAT GOADED ME INTO THIS”. You will not die. You will do it again. The last part is discretionary. You will have similar thoughts on the bike. “HOW IS IT POSSIBLE TO GO UPHILL, INTO THE WIND, FOR ALL 40k, AND WIND UP BACK WHERE I STARTED?”. The run is almost entirely self-loathing.

Corollary to Law Two – You will love it.

(caution, serious bit here) Life is not about just doing what is easy. Truly living requires stepping out of your comfort zone, feeling a little fear and yes, even a little pain. You will rarely feel more alive than when you have been in agony, and fought through and reached your goal, regardless of the opinion of the chip-time god. There may have been some lows, but I can say with unshakeable conviction and satisfaction that some of my greatest highs this summer, and indeed in a very long time, were forged in the fire of doubt, and tempered with pain and humility. (ok serious over) Post-event depression is a thing. The day after a race you will feverishly scan the interwebs for an event, any event, to slake your thirst for more. Caution – this can lead to unintended consequences, such as a tri in the morning and an obstacle course race in the afternoon. This is not advised.

Law Three – It will make you more interesting.

Friends and family will love to be regaled with your tales from T2 and stroke by stride recital of The Great Sprint Triathlon of 2017.

Corollary to Law Three – No, no it won’t.

“I SWEAR IF YOU SAY THE WORD SPLIT ONCE MORE I WILL SPLIT YOUR HEAD OPEN WITH A CLIF BAR”. Do not be alarmed if your spouse is googling “Whole Life Insurance” and “Involuntary Commitment”. Pro-tip – Do be suspicious if he/she “accidentally” leaves the browser on the recipe for “Arsenic and Hemlock Protein Smoothie”. It’s not for them.

Law Four – Tri-buddies

The quality of the triathlon experience is directly proportional to the calibre and character of the people you encounter in the course of training and competing. I had a stellar summer. You know who you are.

Have a great winter, and hope to see you around T1.

Member Bio – Robert McCullum

This month we’d like to introduce you to Robert McCullum.

One of the earliest and most joyful childhood memories I have, is of running on the sidewalk and out onto the boulevard grass. Reveling in that sense of freedom and absolute joy. It is still the same for me every time I put on a pair of running shoes.

Running is where it all began for me. As with some or you, I ran track at school and after that life took over and got in the way. Work became the main focus for quite a while. One day however, I was looking through some pictures from work, that had been taken over that past year. I kept seeing this person I did not recognize. I asked one of my colleagues, “Who is this fat guy in all the pictures?”

Upon closer inspection I recognized MYSELF. I had gained almost 100 pounds. I immediately changed my diet and after several months started to run by myself. I was inconsistent so, I went to the Running Room and joined the Learn to Run program. That was 2008. I ran my first 5km run that same year. The following year, I ran my first Half Marathon at Mississauga and my first full Marathon and then another, and another after that. I kept going in 2010 and joined adult swim lessons with City of Brampton. I also joined FMCT that year and signed up for my first Triathlon experience in the relay at Ironman Muskoka 70.3, to do the swim portion only.

Shortly after this time I tore my MCL and kept re-injuring the same knee over and over. It has been a long slow journey back but I have now done 70.3 events in Syracuse in 2016 and Mt. Tremblant in 2017.

Having been away from FMCT for quite a while, my partner Lorraine and I signed up again this past year and I have to say it is great to be back and to see some familiar faces as well as lots of new ones. I look forward to meeting everyone and getting to know and train with all of you. For me at least FMCT really feels like home.

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October 24 Weekly Update

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