On Sunday August 15th I was blessed with seeing one of my Earth Angels. A woman I hadn't seen in a few years, a woman who changed my life and in doing so changed the lives of so many! What makes this woman so special? Well let me tell you!
Way back in 1999 I met an extraordinary woman by the name of Kathy Ewing. What made her exceptional even back then was that she was 47, a mother of 5 and grandmother who was single, had a 'dodgy' back along with knee issues, carrying around extra weight AND was a TRIATHLETE! This woman started pestering me about doing a triathlon too - the first time she brought it up I'm pretty sure I laughed in her face and said something like "ARE YOU NUTS?!?!?!?"
Being ever persistent she kept at me until I finally agreed to this outlandish goal in 2000. I figured that if she could do it then most likely I could do it too. It was the most impactful and empowering thing that I have ever done by myself and for myself. I'd love to be able to tell you that I was a natural Triathlete but that would be a tad misleading..... Suffice it to say that I was woefully under prepared for the experience.
Since I swam and dove competitively I only did 2 swim trainings which were both in a pool. I did no run training because I was NOT going to run. I DID do a LOT of bike training though..... I had so many learning opportunities the day of the event and the things I learned I share with my athletes to this day. Even though I was admittedly arrogant about the swim all the years I spent swimming came to my aid and I was able to do the swim in only 15 minutes. I did have a moment when I was panicky so I flipped over on my back and gathered my wits and caught my breath and got into my swim rhythm.
The bike was great and I felt strong! Well at least until I got OFF of my bike and had to stand on my legs... It felt like my strong legs suddenly turned into noodles made of Jello! I was so caught up in the excitement of the event I even tried to run. Well that didn't work out too well - the spirit was willing but the body was weak. I did run across the finish line had a medal placed around my neck and was SUPER glad to be done! I can honestly say that I didn't feel different immediately, in fact it was in small moments over the course of the year that I learned how much my life been impacted by my achievement.
I discovered that I was stronger , more capable more determined, had greater follow through, and was much BRAVER than I thought I was. I started coaching a triathlon program for beginners back in 2003 and since then I have shared my experience, strength and hope with my athletes in an effort to help them see what THEY are made of but in a way that is fully supported. I do my best to help them have great experience on the day of the event because I've trained them so well they know what to expect.
Thanks to my Angel Kathy Ewing, I've helped over 150 women cross the finish line of their first triathlon. Without her persistence, love, support, guidance and unwavering belief in ME I would never have attempted such an outlandish goal.
Here's to You in Health, Wellness and Fitness,
Jennifer Malocha CEO of Fun at Wuhoo Fitness
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