Devil's Challenge 2003

September 14, 2003

My last triathlon was in 2001. It was my first Devil's Challenge. This year, I hoped to have a better time. I trained for a couple of months either running, swimming or biking every other day. I was up to 3 mile runs before race day - which is a personal success for me as I hate running.

The course had changed since 2001. The bike route had several smaller hills compared to one giant hill. And the running course ran through the paved camp ground, unlike the dirt trails along the south shore. Luckily, Ben and I biked the coarse a week before so I was prepared for the hills. This is a Sprint Distance triathlon - 1⁄4 mile swim, 15 mile bike and 5K run.

It rained almost the ENTIRE morning which killed everyone's time - on the bike especially. It was cold too - I'm told my lips were blue the whole time. The water, however, was warm - but low due to a very dry summer. We had to do a water start, walking knee deep into Devil's Lake.

I felt pretty good about the swim, but 3/4's of the way I had to switch from the crawl to breast stroke to take a break. The bike was nerving as it was very wet and you couldn't help but go fast down the hills. There were a lot of bikers wiping out. The run was a piece of cake but I wished I had not worn my cut-offs. By now, they were soaked and weighing me down. I was tempted to jump behind a tree and whip them off but I didn't want to lose any time.

In the swim and the run I shaved off time compared to two years ago: 1 min. faster on the swim, 4 mins. faster on the run. Only the bike was slower (by more than 5 mins.) which I blame on the weather. All total, my 2003 time was 1 min. slower compared to two years ago. I have some work for 2004.

The best part had to be the fans who showed up. Not only were Kathy's parents and my parents there to cheer me on but as I came flying down the last hill, I saw 4 people wearing letters spelling my name. It was a real boost. I understand the dogs had the words "Go" but they ran off into woods and lost them. Thanks to everyone for coming out.

37 of 43

see the results for myself and Kathy for all past triathlons

Water start

Water start-close up


Coming in

First transition

Second transition

Hanging bike

Changing shoes

Removing helmet

Still changing shoes

Coming in

Finish line


Removing time chip


Fans and me

Mom and Dad

Yes, I would like a coat

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