I am married to an age group triathlete who, in the past, has finished in the top 20-25% of his age group; not World Championship qualifying, but triwife worthy admiration status, none-the-less…He is also an Ironman XC athlete, which HAS allowed him to qualify. In the past five years with Ironman XC, he has qualified for the Ironman World Championships twice and 70.3 World Championships, as well.
We are now officially in the “been there done that” stage of triathlons and looking for new challenges and adventures. Although in this comeback year, it may seem different. David recently raced Ironman 70.3 Puerto Rico, a wonderful destination race, but the rest of the 2015 race season will be repeats for us with Ironman Texas and Arizona. The reason being, it is simply a comeback year for David; a first for us. But, 2016 will be all destinations! And, it’s never too early to start planning!
So, back to why we choose destination races…
For my triathlete:
- He loves the challenge of a new course. The idea of the European switchbacks or swimming in new bodies of water is a rush for him.
- The beauty of the course. As an age group triathlete, of course he loves the competition, including racing against himself, but there’s more to it than that! Destination races allow him to see new states and countries and the beauty within the course.
- He’s heard amazing things about the race. This can be from either word of mouth or from reading all of those triathlete magazines.
- To say he has done it. He may not be a Luis Alvarez or Dave Orlowski, but he would like to race as many different races around the world as he can.
- To see the world. You see, my husband is not a traveler like me at all! He likes to be home. He has traveled so much for work in the past and simply works so much these days, that his happy place is home. So, doing triathlons around the world gets him out of his normal element. That said, he will most likely always fly home after the race and allow us to explore more. This past trip to Puerto Rico, he and I arrived 3 days before the race and he stayed on 4 days after the race. I stayed on for almost an additional week past him to explore more and spring break with our daughter.
- To make his family happy. The kids and I are travelers and so, to make us happy, he is racing different places!
David’s actually thinking Ironman Japan is it for him, because it absolutely satisfies every one of his criteria, especially #6!
For me and the family:
- To explore new places! I am a traveler and I have raised two travelers. For some strange reason, they are refusing to meet us in The Woodlands for Ironman Texas…Hmmmm…They have done it once and refuse to go back. Thus, if hubby wants to travel with the twins, he must pick races they want to visit. They are now old enough to make those decisions for themselves…
- To support David. Doing triathlons are not mine or the twins things; they’re his thing. Just like he supports us in our extracurricular activities, we support him. So of course, one, two, or all three of us will always be at the race. But, pick that awesome destination and I bet he can get all three of us there!
- Meeting old and new friends. Triathlon families are amazing. This is a lifestyle choice for most who do triathlons; it is truly a way of life. No one else quite understands what it’s like being kids of a triathlete or a partner of a triathlete, other than another triathlete family. Traveling to destination races allows us to meet new friends and catch up with old ones. We have even planned destination races to meet up with folks we have met over the years.
- Getting to plan the trip. Now that the twins are in college, we have a ton of fun planning races around their vacation schedules. Planning our schedule can be a challenge, but we’ve found a way to make it fun and easy.
For the two of us:
- Compromising. As I’ve mentioned, my triathlete hubby does not like to travel, but I do. Planning a destination triathlon is the perfect compromise for us and meets both of our needs; I get to travel and he gets to race.
- Destination races are a wonderful benefit for my hubby and me as the kids getting older. You see, as the kids go off on their own, this thing called life happens. They get busy with their own lives. They travel, like to be with their friends, have school, and then there’s their diving and dance; thus making their time limited. We have found that if we pick awesome destination races in locations they would like to go, we will more likely have them tagging along. It’s not that they don’t love us, it’s just life…