Florida Ironman 70.3 2010

I went over to Orlando yesterday morning with one of my buddies to watch another friend compete in the Florida 70.3 triathlon put on by IronMan at Disney. It was absolutely amazing. I’ve done triathlons myself, but I’ve never gone to see one as a spectator. When you are competing, you’re pretty focused on yourself and what you need to do, so it’s hard to take in the whole event. Even if you aren’t personally into endurance competitions, it’s something I’d recommend going to see once in your life.

It was completely inspiring.

It’s hard to say what the best part of the race was. It may have been watching competitors complete the 1.2 mile swim just before the cutoff time–one lady exited the water with a huge smile and obvious sense of accomplishment on her face, and stopped and broke into tears as soon as she crossed the timing mat.

It was also great to see so many people of different ages and body types doing the race. There were very few elite athletes in the 2,000 person field. They were mostly regular people who have decided to sacrifice a lot of time and effort to take on a race this size knowing they’ll have to make it work around the rest of their lives. As my buddy who went to watch with me noted, “I bet there are so many great stories here.”

After seeing another competitor with only one arm exiting the swim, and yet another getting ready to run with two prosthetic legs and 1.5 arms, you realize that anybody can do a this. All that matters is whether or not you think you can.