I can’t believe that it has been almost a year since I have done my 1st triathlon and 1 year to the day ( Sept 17, 2017) when I was to compete in my 3rd triathlon (I have deferred my race-more on that in another post)!!
NEVER in a million years, would I have thought that I, Tamieka would be a TRIATHLETE!
That I Tamieka, would have improved:
-as an athlete;
-a swimmer…even be a swimmer;
Never in a million years would I think that someone would ask me about my experiences, my improvements as a beginning triathlete and use that information to include me in an article but that is exactly what happened!!
My friend, former Luna Chix teamamte, Mom to 3, writer, NatGeo author. 3 x TEAM USA triathlete.Team Rev3, MCRRC, Nuun team member, Sarah Wasser Flynn asked me to be a part of an article that she was writing about rookie triathletes.
You can read the full article HERE. There are some amazing people in this article!
Here is my contribution:
“I learned how to swim six months before my first race.”
Name: Tamieka Skinner-Thomasson
Resides: Germantown, Maryland
Last spring, Tamieka Skinner-Thomasson registered for the notoriously tough Savageman triathlon — her first-ever — without knowing how to swim. Bold? Yes, but once Skinner-Thomasson sets her mind on something, there’s not much that’ll stop her.
“I had no prior swim experience, though I could tread water,” says Skinner-Thomasson, a mom of two. “I started lessons in January and the race was in August. Plenty of time, right?”
Though she had fears about open water swimming, Skinner-Thomasson first focused on getting her technique down in the pool. She says that being in a group of adults with the same skill set helped assuage a lot of her nerves and made her more confident in her ability. “There was no pressure and I didn’t have that feeling that I had to be better than anyone else,” she says. “We were all starting from the very beginning.”
Under the guidance of her teacher, Skinner-Thomasson went from simply floating to swimming across the pool to logging laps. Still, she had another major hurdle to clear: The open water swim. When she slipped into the murky waters of Deep Creek Lake for the 750-meter Savageman swim, she repeatedly reminded herself to just finish the swim — no matter what.
“I didn’t care how long it took. My family and kids were there, and I didn’t want them to see me quit,” she says. “Even if it took me three hours to do the swim, even if I had to ask for help from the volunteer kayakers, I knew I’d get it done.”
Skinner-Thomasson did get the swim done — and went on to conquer the hilly bike and run course, too. Afterward, she “slept for hours” and, as the fatigue and muscle soreness set in, she questioned if she was really cut out for the sport. Those doubts only lingered for a day or so, though, and soon, Skinner-Thomasson was already thinking about her next race.
“Triathlon is just such a friendly and welcoming environment,” Skinner-Thomasson says. “And I love the challenge. It’s easy to get hooked.”
Looking back on this year as a triathlete, I know that I have learned so much and have improved but also know that I have plenty of room for improvement.
Can you guess today’s word?…..Improvement.