Sunday, July 27, 2008

Fun T-Shirts (4)

I guess since I'm better at swimming than biking or running, it is, by far, my favorite of the three triathlon sports. Most of my childhood summers were spent in and around a pool or lake. We lived across the street from a park with a swimming pool, and later spent lots of days at our lakeside trailer fishing, canoeing and swimming. My sister, ML has made a career of swimming. She's taught swim teams, led water aerobics and arthritis therapy, and has been an aquatics director at several venues. Swimming is fun, and you don't get too hot, (although I have been known to sweat during some of our Flounder swim team workouts).

Here's our Flowood Fighting Flounders Masters Swim Team uniform T-Shirt. This is what we wear to intimidate the other teams at swim meets.

Our team is registered with US Masters Swimming, and we compete in the Southern Masters Swimming Dixie Zone. We got a nice warmup jacket at the meet in New Orleans last December.

We're participating in the USMS 2008 Check-off Challenge, wherein you complete 18 different events using each of the four strokes - freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke and butterfly - at various distances. Some are routine for most swimmers and quite easy. Others are a bit more challenging, such as the one remaining event we haven't completed, the 200 yard butterfly. Last Thursday we checked off the 400 individual medley, a feat I wouldn't have dreamed possible a year ago.

A fun thing our local YMCA sponsors is the English Channel Challenge. You simply record your swim distance each day on a big chart, and if you complete the English Channel distance within a specified time frame, you get a free T-Shirt!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Fun T-Shirts (3)

Here's the T-shirt design of our local big bike ride. Paul and I do the metric century - around 66 miles. On my first ride I was very new to cycling and had just bought my bike a few months earlier. I had a flat tire nearly every time I rode. So on the 06 Century ride a had my usual luck and more, changing a probable record 6 flat tires. Now, you may be thinking "wasn't there something obvioius that was causing the flats?" Well, we had a SAG group from a major bike shop patrolling the route, and the guys just kept giving me new tubes and eventually a new tire. They even did the fix a couple times themselves. As it turned out, the lining around the rim was plastic and very old, and had cracked unnoticeably. After only a short while under pressure, the liner would cause a split in the tube, and POW!! - another flat. Soon after the ride I purchased new liners and another new tire to match my freebie.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Fun T-Shirts (2)

The Heatwave is our hometown race. Three years ago, the week after I did my first "beginner" tri, I volunteered to help at the Heatwave to get an up-close feel for what it was like. Finishing the next year's Heatwave was my goal, and I began training, a routine I continue today. Since then I've done the race 3 times.
It's an Olympic distance race (sort of). I think the bike leg is a mile or two short.

There have been problems with the routing of the bike and run legs and with the local traffic, and a buoy even broke loose once on the swim leg, causing swimmers to chase the buoy some extra distance as it drifted wider from the original course. I would love to say it gets better every year, but there always seems to be some problem that goofs something up. This year everyone had vastly improved swim times because the course was not laid out accurately.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Fun T-Shirts (1)

All my triathlete friends rave about the health benefits of our sport and look forward to the thrill of competition, but don't be fooled - we all do it primarily for the cool T-shirts! I thought it might be fun (at least for me) to post pics of most of the recent shirts Wifeunit and I have collected.

This one was from my very first tri, a short beginner race created by the Jackson Triathlon Association. The race got me hooked, of course, but I realized it would take lots more training to move up to a longer distance.

I trained for a year and did the second SUTS without much problem.

Now I help out at the race as a volunteer, and it's almost as much fun as being out there with them. And we all know you've got to give something back.