Following the Hachede Triathlon in Geesthacht yesterday, I received lots of congratulations, with many kind people wishing me well for finishing second in my age group. Yes, sure, it was good, but first in my age group was the winner, who finishing the sprint (750m, 20km, 5km) just about 13 minutes ahead of me.
This super-human-42-year-old even lapped me on the 2.5km run course. So, he’d finished, having barely worked up a sweat, and I still had another 3km to run. WTF???
Anyway, on my second lap – running pretty well, feeling good and enjoying the race – I thought a bit about what it would take to be that fast in your forties (or even in your twenties). I concluded it would have to be a full-time commitment. There would be no time for a job, a family, friends or anything else apart from triathlon. There would only be training, racing, sleeping, eating and taking “vitamins”.
And what a boring person that would be.
So, as I loped through my second lap, I was completely fine with being lapped by the winner, who had probably already packed up and was heading home to spend the rest of the day training. I don’t want to be that guy, and I don’t want to take anything that would give me an unfair advantage.
On that note, I’m seeing this year that, while my results are pretty much the same, I’m finishing further down the field, often being beaten by guys far on the other side of 40 and by guys who don’t look like athletes at all. This makes me wonder if these triathletes, fed up with being unable to compete or improve, have reached for the “vitamins”. You know, if you can’t beat them, join them. If this is the case, and from the times being posted, it looks like it is, then I think it’s a real shame.