Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Strongest Finishing Kick I've Ever Seen

Amid the heartache and tough days there are still wonderful blessings.  This morning my family was honored to find out the 3Discipline's would be dedicating this year's Tawas Triathlon Festival to my Father.  A triathlon was on my dad's radar - not too far off.  He had completed 2 duathlons and was an avid kayaker.  He had found a triathlon in Michigan that was a kayak, bike, run event instead of the traditional swim, bike, run and was putting on the race calendar for the end of summer.  He loved the multisport scene - everything from volunteering at races to helping me pick a tri bike, to coming out to cheer his kids on in Washington, DC.  This weekend September, 11 would have been my dad's first chance to see me race - he'll still see me race just not in the same way.

My dad's first experience with multisport was watching my brother complete a sprint distance triathlon in 2008.  After that I began dabbling in multisport and challenging my dad to "Finneren Du's" on the weekends over the summers (him and I were usually the only competitors).  Before getting into the multisport scene my dad became a runner.  We made a family tradition of running in the Detroit Turkey Trot and Clawson Freedom Run 5k.  My dad also competed in events around our hometown such as the Dragon Dash and Lake Orion New Year's Resolution Run.  Prior to becoming a runner my dad was an avid cyclist ever since I can remember.  Some of my earliest memories with my dad were on the back of his bike in a child seat.  When the Lake Orion Rotary Club announced they would be hosting a Duathlon in 2010 my dad was up for the challenge.  He would run and bike and even did a few short brick workouts to prepare for the race.  My brother and I were blessed to be able to come home the weekend of his race and give him some multisport tips and cheer him on.  Since that race and since my brother and I became increasingly involved in the multisport scene ourselves my dad grew to love it.  He again raced the Lake Orion Rotary Club Duathlon in 2011 - improving his time by 12 minutes and finishing 4th in his age group. 

He started a Kayak company and was very fond of the idea of a triathlon that allowed kayaking instead of swimming - and he scoped out such races, planning to complete on this summer.  He didn't write-off the swim though, he practiced, and I even got him out to the lap pool a few times with me to do some training.  He was a great fan and supporter, following my brother and I in a kayak when we wanted to do open water swims.  He volunteered for the 3D Tawas Triathlon festival last year with my mom and loved it.  Since he had recently retired from GM he kept his eyes open for positions to work part time with 3D.  This year it was a tough decision but since my brother and I live in Washington, DC him and my mom had made plans to watch us compete in The Nation's Triathlon on September 11 - the first time he'd see me race.  When we discovered the Tawas Triathlon Festival in Spring of 2010 we knew it was a race we needed to do in  the next few years, so you can bet we will be there next year (with as many people as I can recruit to join me).   Below are his race results from the past years.   We are very honored and grateful for this gesture.  

I am so thankful I got to see my dad race and even train with him.  He could give me a run for my money this past summer is I wasn't on my game.  He never gave anything less than his best.  He committed himself to training and encouraged those around him to train.  I couldn't get away with skipping out on training when I went home on breaks from school because I knew when my dad got home he'd ask me what I did to train that day - not to pressure me but just to know and to share in something he knew I loved.  When him and I would compete in the hotly contested "Finneren Duathlon" he would push himself each and every time, always improving his time and pushing me to be better, because I didn't like seeing his time creep down towards mine.  My dad had the strongest finishing kick I've ever seen :)

If you've been thinking about 'Tri-ing" or "Du-ing" get to it and put Tawas Triathlon Festival on your calendar for 2012!  There is a race for everyone.  Check it out at http://www.3disciplines.com/events/september/tawas-triathlon-festival ! 

If you are in DC come on out to Nation's Tri on September 11th!  Greater things are yet to come.

Dad's Results

Lake Orion Rotary Duathlon: Link broken unable to obtain right now
Clawson Freedom Run 5k: 27:27
Lake Orion Dragon Dash 8k: 46:26 (2nd place AG)
Lake Orion New Year's Resolution Run 5k: 28:18

Detroit Turkey Trot 10k 58:46
Lake Orion Rotary Duathlon:

Detroit Turkey Trot 10k: 1:01:05
Clawson Freedom Run: 29:06

Detroit Turkey Trot 5k: 39:05
Clawson Freedom Run 5k: 28:39


  1. I love it and I love you so very much!Mom

  2. I wont hesitate to say that he is why you race so well! Now go win some more races..like Nations!

  3. Thanks. I'll be putting it all on the line at Nation's - swim or no swim. This may play to my strengths in the hunt for the win :)

  4. I had this in my reader, wanting to wait till I had some free time to read this, This was a beautiful Tribute to your father.