The Human Condition – A CFLA TRI TEAM REPORT by Jamie Silber
Guest blog by Jamie Silber
This past Sunday, the CFLA Tri Team once again toed the line at a triathlon. However, this event would prove to be very different.
Let’s start with the distance: 1.2 Mile Open Water Swim, 56 Mile Bike and a 13.1 Run…of which 3.3 miles were in the sand! This is the standard Half distance of the Full Ironman event you might of seen on TV in Hawaii. Now to the parts that revealed them selfs as the event unfolded…
At 6:00AM the team approached the SWIM start to find the surf report was wrong! It was a strong west swell of 5-6ft waves, not the 1-2ft swell previously reported. The team had to navigate a two loop course and exit the water to a 300m sand run before completing the second loop. All five of them performed very well, in fact some achieved personal bests. One the BIKE…the golden rule was to take in fuel and hydration early and often. The BIKE in triathlon is a fickle balancing act of expressing power yet taking on fuel & hydration. Event the fittest and most experienced triathletes get it wrong sometimes and either do not absorb/empty fuel and hydration or take in too little…both scenarios will have disastrous implications on the run.
From my vantage point, the whole team got off the bike looking good for the 13.1 mile run. The RUN was not your typical 1/2 Marathon. The course was designed by Navy Frogman and Seals to continue to test there physical capacities while not on deployment. There were barren roads, sand dunes and out and backs than seemed to go on forever – not to mention, there was only one small patch of shade on the entire course. As the coach, I worked feverishly to get eyes on all the team members at some point on the course. This is when I found one of our athletes not feeling well…John Bonds.
John Bonds later that same evening said to me: “I do triathlons because I refuse to let the current human condition around me define me. I do not want to be defined by my occupation, devices, materials or even just my day to day activities. I do things like this to remind me that we (humans) once had to physically work, run, jump, swim…even crawl to just stay alive.”
John stopped metabolizing calories and absorbing water at the halfway point on the bike. He was faced with stopping or managing his energy reserves for approximately the next 4+ hours. At mile 10 of the run this was revealed to me as he ran by with a stiff jaw and a determined attitude. Before I could see how bad his situation was, he was running away from me looking like the person he would later describe to me later that night.
John performed and finished the race not the way he wanted to, but in hindsight, I realized he completed the event as if this IS his “human condition.” The work you put forth is the every defining aspect of who you really are at you core.
The rest of the team also finished the event on their own terms: with new found growth, personal bests, and even their very first triathlon.
Congratulations to the CFLA Tri Team:
Running skill session
10s 2×4 L-sit hold
4 Alt. Balancing tripod transitions
6 Lateral burpees
8 Kipping pullups
3 Rounds DT* (135/95)
1 Round Cindy**
2 Rounds DT
2 Rounds Cindy
1 Round DT
3 Rounds Cindy
–Courtesy of the CrossFit community / Goldsobel’s suggestion–
9 Hang power cleans
6 Power jerks
5 Kipping pullups