As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17
This was our fraternity verse in college, something that has always stuck with me. In our own individual ways, we always have an opportunity to help, encourage and support others in life.
Towards the end of my triathlon I started worrying about what I would do next. I was worried that I might not have motivation to keep it up because I didn’t have a goal to work towards. Uh-oh.
The day after my first tri, Brian Dawson, one of my fraternity brothers completed his first Ironman in Louisville, KY. A full Ironman consists of a 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and a full marathon, 26.2 miles. Dawson did a great job and it was awesome to see him cross the finish line!
So what’s next?
Me and a team of my friends including Joe Bland, Austin Lee, Brian Dawson and Matt Thein have all registered for North Carolina’s first Half Ironman in Raleigh, NC. The race will be on June 2, 2013. That’s 274 days from now. That’s 274 days to get into the best shape of my life. That’s 274 days to the biggest challenge yet.
To prepare there will be more triathlons to come, my fiancee and I will be running a half marathon together and there will be countless hours logged in the YMCA pool and weight room as well as many more miles put on my bike around Fort Jackson.
What’s a Half Ironman?
Well, I’m glad you asked. A half ironman is still a triathlon, but it’s much, much further than the sprint triathlon I just completed.
The swimming section is 1.2 miles. The biking section is 56 miles. The running section is 13.1 miles. For those of you who run, that’s a half marathon!
My goal is to finish in under 7 hours.
More about the team
Matt Thein: What can you say about Matt Thein? He’s a man of God and a man’s man! He might be a novice, but he has a warriors heart! Matt manages a full time job in the navy, a family, a passion for writing and performing music. He claims to have have zero triathlon experience but have a few friends that are steering me to success! his goals are to push himself to be healthy and always live in a state of reformation
Austin Lee: Austin lives in Atlanta, GA and he is training for his first triathlon. He and his wife Courtney are some of the best people you’ll ever meet. You can keep up Austin on his website. I’ve known Austin since college and I can tell you that Austin accomplishes everything he sets his mind to. I cannot wait to cross the finish line with him in 2013!
Joe Bland: Joe is the Founder of our sponsor: Raleigh Coffee Company. Joe loves the outdoors. This will be his first Half Ironman. Joe says “I’ve never participated in an athletic race aside from the middle school track team. I’m here to inspire my philosophy of anyone can mentally do anything that they are physically able.” Joe is no average Joe, watch out for him!
Brian Dawson: When I think about ‘Beast Mode’ Brian is at the top of my list. Brian recently completed his first full Ironman in Louisville this year, but considers himself a novice triathlete. He has also completed 10 marathons and numerous other endurance events such as the 24 hour burn mountain bike race as part of a team and he finished the Shenandoah 100 Mile MTB race last year as well.** Why? Many reasons**. He “likes the challenge of setting a goal that seems a little harder than what I think I could do and then working to achieve it. I like the feeling of being physically fit and enjoying the days I have on this earth. In college I worked as a CNA (certified nursing assistant) and was not as healthy or active and I remember one of my patients who was bed bound. Ollie told me that she would give anything to be able to go outside. She begged me to commit to taking the stairs whenever I could. She said she took her legs and health for granted for too many years. Ollie challenged me to be fit and enjoy life. Kind of like an old lady telling you “Carpe Diem” or “Drink of an idea - go live it!”.” BOOM!
More about our sponsor
Raleigh Coffe Company has graciously agreed to sponsor “Team RCC.” RCC has what they call ‘Bean Projects.’ All team members will raise at least $100 towards Project 8. Bean Projects are charitable projects which Raleigh Coffee Company established with the founding values of its course of work. They’re also treating us like superstars and hooking us up with team jerseys, meals and lots of other great stuff. If you’re interested in support us or Project 8, please contact me soon!
Let’s have a heart-to-heart
I would be lying if I didn’t tell you that the idea of this scares the living crap out of me! The sprint triathlon was great, but this is on a whole other level. I want to take this fear and put it to work. It means long hours, no social life and another lifestyle change, purchasing more equipment, running longer, swimming faster and biking harder. Personally though, I can’t wait. I know that I will be crossing the finish line as an Ironman on June 2, 2012.