8/29/19 — It is over. But now what?
It is over. The build-up over the past 14 weeks has concluded. No more 4 to 6-hour exercise days on the weekend! But now what? Will I do it again (many asked)? And yes, I would. It was, by far, the hardest sporting event I have ever done. But it was more than that. It was humbling. It was inspirational. It was transformative. And I was not alone.
Without the vision and leadership of Traverse City Tourism (Trevor Tkach) to not only bring the Ironman 70.3 to Traverse City but also looked for ways to help 5 local charities as well, I would not have been doing it. To the many staff at Goodwill Industries, especially Julie Povolo, who organized our efforts and provided support and encouragement throughout the process I am thankful. To the many people who participated in my training, especially my amazing neighbor Tim Barrons (Byte Production), who loaned me his customized bike for training and the race. This included all bike maintenance and many training rides. To Ironworks at Hagerty where I took spin lessons from the same Tim Barrons. To the YMCA, an incredible community asset, where I took spin classes, joined Master’s swim, and ran on treadmills (including a few 2 hour runs!). To TCOWs (Traverse City Open Water Swimmers) who let me join them in open swims and patiently waited for me to catch up to them. To another neighbor Don LaFaive, who provided me a training workout and was my accountability/support buddy to get through the trials and tribulations of the journey. To the many other people who provided advice and strategies about endurance racing.
And to my family, Christine (wife), Gabrielle (daughter: 9), and McKeiley (daughter: 11) who were immensely supportive, encouraging, and excited for the opportunity. They endured me being gone for many mornings on the weekends, being tired (and bit crabby) at times, and for listening to me talk incessantly about my latest workout, concerns, doubts, running/biking/swimming strategies, for making me drink celery juice, and for picking up the slack on chores around the house. It wasn’t always easy, but they never wavered in their support!
This was a larger effort and it was about something more. I got to be a participant for the larger purpose of bringing awareness and support to the needs of many in our community who do not have access to healthy nutritious food. I am humble to have been a part of this. Today, consider contributing to Food Rescue so that the pantries in our community can have fresh and nutritious food available to the many needy families and children of our community. Thank you for your support!
Goodwill Industries of Northern Michigan