I’m 29 years old with two awesome kids and a beautiful wife. During the day, I manage the marketing of UPS freight forwarding products in Alpharetta, Georgia.
Early in the mornings and occasional Saturdays, however, I am an enthusiastic amateur triathlete.
But I wasn’t always like that – not by a long shot.
Before triathlon, there was a LOT more of me
In 2013, I was 80 pounds heavier than I am today. I think I topped out at 233. When your wife is an incredible southern cook, it’s hard to not eat three plates at dinner. Over the next three years I lost the weight and came to love running (read more about how I lost the weight here – it mostly involved just tracking what I ate).
Shockingly, running became a whole lot easier as I lost weight. Eventually, a mile didn’t utterly destroy me. A couple miles did, but I just kept working at it. In April 2015 I ran my first half marathon, and in November 2015, I did my first full marathon in Richmond, Virginia, with a time of 3:35. That was the first major race I competed in, and the enjoyment was addicting.
My legs started to feel the stress of running six days a week, so I really wanted to start cross training to prevent injuries. The big problem, however, was the funds. I was finishing up graduate school, and budgeting every penny. My wife was supportive, but I knew we had to be very wise about what I could spend money on for my new interest.
The super-frugal triathlon newbie phase (hasn’t ended yet)
I got extremely lucky and found a road bike on craigslist that was fantastic. I started riding, and (very) slowly buying tri gear – clip on aero handlebars, clipless pedals, etc.
Swimming was the next new horizon. Every time I went into the pool, I felt as if I was drowning. I did my best to learn how to breathe – but I was still gulping in water by the mouthful every lap – and that was if I could even complete more than one lap. Two months of almost drowning finally paid off, and I slowly started to actually enjoying swimming.
As my final year of graduate school came to a close, and I prepared to start working full-time with UPS, I gave myself a graduation present of entries into a couple of the Trivium Multisport series, a fantastic local series around Greensboro, North Carolina.
My first race was the Hagan Stone Park Duathlon. I really have to hand it to Trivium for making the event approachable for a first-time athlete. I talked with the race director, who gave me lots of encouragement and eased all my worries. Only about 100 people competed, which was perfect for me, and I ended up in 13th place overall. It was such a blast, and the people were all so fun, cool, and supportive, that I knew I’d found my passion. Best of all, I had the most enthusiastic cheerleader – my daughter Rachel.
Today, I’m training for my first full Ironman and continuing to learn and grow
Currently, I am training for my first Ironman, in Houston Texas April 22, 2017. I had a great first season with several sprint triathlons and an Olympic distance one as well. I’m excited to make the jump to longer distances. My goal is to finish the race in under 12 hours – although it’s my first one, so finishing will be a highlight no matter what my time is. Eventually, I would love to break 11 or even 10 hours, but I need to keep training and get a bit faster before I see those numbers.
My training load is between 10-12 hours a week, generally following Kevin Coady’s Sub 10 Ironman in 10 Hours Per Week, although I add in a couple functional strength sessions, and take Sunday completely off to attend the LDS church.
I’ve learned a ton so far, and I know I have a lot more to learn. This site is dedicated to my experiences and passions in a hope that they help others and bring opportunities to connect with like-minded future friends.