Lessons Learned From My First MultiSport Event


This past weekend I had the opportunity to participate in my first “multi-sport” event, the Prospect Park Duathlon in Brooklyn, New York.  I’ve done numerous biking events but I’ve never done a multi-sport event or even a running event for that matter.  I won’t lie, it wasn’t easy, but I finished and in the process I learned a few things about myself, my training and how I can help my clients reach their goals.

For this race, I chose to do the classic duathlon distance, which was a 3.1 mile (5K) run, then a 14 mile bike ride, then another 3.1 mile run.  Little did I know that the 5k route was packed with hills, lots of big hills.  “Not to worry I thought, “I’ll pace myself and run my race.”  Two miles into the run, and on the second of two major hills, I started to second guess my decision to wake up at 5am on a Saturday morning to drive an hour simply to torture myself.  Again, “not to worry,” I thought, “what doesn’t kill me will only make me stronger.”   I made it through the first run and onto the bike only to find that the hills had done a number on my otherwise strong bike legs.  But even with a stiff headwind around most of the course I dug deep and pulled out a decent ride.  Then it was on to the second run and those damn hills again.

It was during the second run that it really hit me… the pain that is. When I thought about stopping for a second to let my legs catch up, a little voice in my head said, “Don’t stop…..keep running….how bad do you want it?”  By this time I was well out of any chance to place or win an award.  To me it was a matter of proving to myself, not anyone else, that I could do whatever I set my mind to, no limits.  So I picked up the pace and headed up the first hill and then the second.  I eventually arrived at the finish line in one piece, tired but proud of what I was able to accomplish.  It wasn’t the Ironman in Hawaii, but it was something.

We often underestimate or fail to recognize the power of our mind.  Keeping what motivates you fresh in your mind and staying positive is often enough to get you through something that you perceive to be hard or difficult.  I try to do this with my clients all the time when they’re having a rough day or it’s a hard workout.  I remind them of that wedding that they’re in 2 months from now or that trip to Vegas in another month.  That’s usually enough to pep them up until the end of the workout and beyond.  This applies not only to sports and working out, but to life in general.

So find a goal that stretches you, keep in fresh in your mind, stay positive and you can achieve anything you put your mind to. 

PS.  I’ve already signed up for my second race in the same park in May so that I can beat my time

About Kelvin Gary

Florida native and NYC based Personal Trainer Kelvin Gary looks to help motivate, inspire and inform those looking to better their lives through fitness and healthy living.

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