After graduating college I tried to find the easiest way to make money and do triathlon. Coaching, personal training, all the things where I can make my own hours and work from home - GENIUS. But I noticed that I wasn't good at selling those things, which is a problem :-)
I started working at the Flagstaff Medical Center to see how the healthcare field is in 2009 and it has changed my thinking completely.
I came to the realization that a bad race, a twisted ankle or a flat tire are not actually problems. I realized that there are many many people who have real injuries that might change the rest of their lives and there are many people who from one day to the next, cannot do what they used to anymore.
Well moving forward, ever since I started working there I knew that I wanted to stay in healthcare and help people. Help them smile, help them forget about their injuries or illnesses and help them get better.
Trifest for MS was the first time that I got be involved in a race where the main focus was not the race itself (at least to me), but to raise awareness for MS.
TRIFEST FOR MS
...was the most moving experience. I flew to Arkansas on Friday and spent a weekend with wonderful people. My SKINSTRONG family not only took me and Brad (Seng) in, but they spoiled us A LOT. SKINSTRONG is such a great company. The people behind it are the nicest people, they are not only involved in big races (official Ironman partner) but they also make sure that small races get supported. The entire family is so giving and even their smallest girl does triathlon (she took first place - age 6)!!!
Trifest was not only about racing, but most importantly it was about celebrating life. Meeting the Rampy's (Rampy MS research foundation) was incredible. Their enthusiasm is incredible, they are fighting hard to battle MS and to help find a cure. MS can change your life from one day to the next, but being around the Rampy's I get a feeling that they are going to kick MS in the behind with their positive energy!!!
Saturday was the Sprint race and we got to cheer on everyone competing. I realized that I should really learn the national anthem. The national anthem was sung by a girl with an incredible voice. She had recently lost a friend in the war so she got very sad during singing, to the point where she just couldn't keep singing...so the people of Bentonville, Arkansas started singing for her. 400 people singing the national anthem...and I didn't know the text :-(
Now that gave me goosebumps (not that I didn't know the text, but the fact that the community didn't even hesitate to finish the anthem :-)
This community is so supportive, no matter if it is for filling in during the anthem or fighting MS...they hold together like glue.
The pro race was Sunday and the weather could not have been more perfect. 800 m swim, 40 k bike, 700 m swim, 10 k run. In the ladies field it was Morgan and me. Morgan and I raced bikes together when I was a student in South Dakota. I got dropped in every race :-) We completely disconnected, most likely because she was a cyclist and I was a runner. It was so good to reconnect with her over the weekend and getting to hear what she has been up to. She is also a wonderful person to be around!!!
I came out of the water only a little behind her, I did a time check within the first few miles on the bike and it was 15 seconds. On lap two out of 7 I noticed that my rear tire was feeling low, I stopped, checked and psssssssssssssss, the valve was loose and came completely out. I tightened it back up but by then I had lost too much air to keep riding. Well, that was my race. I came back to transition and checked if I could compete in the supersprint later in the morning and without hesitation Scott Rampy said yes. There was prize money in the race and since we were only 2 people it would have been a nice pay day, but now the leftover money will go towards the foundation and that is a good thing!!!
I had a ton of fun during the supersprint. All out for 30 min. What a great format. I think if Supersprint was more popular I would only race supersprints.
The weekend was a wonderful eye-opener to what truly is important in life!!!
I will definitely be back for the Trifest for MS in 2013!!! Check out what the Rampy MS research foundation is all about and learn more about MS at http://www.researchms.org/ .