Why I Tri

Pun Intended

Why I Tri

I am going to preface this entry with this. I am not naturally... anything. Not many things come natural to me other than a sense of determination and (sometimes) a very positive attitude. I promise you no matter how far I seem to have come since working my way to being slightly good at triathlon, it still takes a lot of willpower and grit to keep up the pace.

So Triathlons Eh? (I am proudly Canadian)

Yeah, that's me. I spend a lot of my time in a pool, a smelly room with a bike, and on a treadmill or the pavement. To some it may seem utterly uninteresting, but to me, it's as close to natural now as anything has ever felt in my life.

For those of you that don't know, a triathlon is an athletic event where a person swims, cycles, and then runs one after the other. Distances vary.

It may sound excruciating, but people really do them for fun!

But Why Though?

See, that's a loaded question. I have never been good at sports... or anything related to fitness whatsoever. I attempted soccer and basketball, but for the most part I was just a lazy kid who like video games and junk food. It didn't make me happy. I knew I was meant for more than what I was. So, like the times before, I got up... and tried. Except this time was different.

I was kind of forced into running a five mile race a few years ago, and hated every second of it. In the end though, it felt so rewarding. I did it! And as much as I hated every step of that run, I started running more. Eventually as running became regular, I noticed how I was feeling better. Not just physically but emotionally. So I kept at it! Then came the swim team, and my first bike. Long story short, I got into triathlon and was training consistently and feeling better than ever.

My why for the beginning stages is that it made me feel good. I was looking a lot better too I might add. As I was growing taller, I was also losing weight because of the training. It was everything my dad ever said would happen to me, except it took a lot more work than just letting puberty hit me.

Why Now?

I realized it wasn't about the weight management anymore. Honestly I think the reason why people get addicted to triathlon is because the people are SO NICE. I'm very grateful to be surrounded by a community of athletes and coaches who have supported me from the start and just keep the positive vibes flowing all the time. We all feed off of each other's goals and successes. It blows my mind to see some people older than my grandparents complete a 15 hour long race. It also blows my mind to see a mother of two attempting to make her way to the Olympics... the hecking OLYMPICS! Doing it all in style with a smile too. It doesn't matter how fast you went or if you won. If you complete a triathlon, you will be met with mass amounts of congratulations and huge smiles and high fives all around. It's such a supportive community.

Swimming, cycling, and running is also like a meditation. It is very beneficial for the mind. If I'm having a good day, bad day, doesn't matter. I'll feel better after having worked out. Something that I haven't necessarily seen after a lift session, or another kind of practice. Every single time I fall out of a routine and come back to training, it's like an epiphany of "oh I remember why I keep doing this." Because it's like a complete mind reset and it's like my emotions are balanced out and I can focus again. It's so hard to explain so I'll stop trying. Just take my word for it.

Final Thoughts

Triathlon is like the warmest, fuzziest teddy bear of sports because of the welcoming community. It will humble you, don't get me wrong. You can and will be crushed by some tough stuff. But you will feel amazing after each goal you crush. I found my motion in life in triathlon. You could find yours.



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Zachary Boulanger

Zachary Boulanger is a Canadian musician currently based out of Halifax Nova Scotia. He studies music at Dalhousie University. Zach's debut EP and album are set to be released in early 2020. 

See all posts by Zachary Boulanger