I spent most of the day yesterday working the medical tent at the South Carolina Half Ironman Triathlon. For those of you who don't know, this event requires you to first swim 1.2 miles, then bike 56 miles, then run 13.1 miles. All in the same day.
I had a great time. It's always fun getting to do events that require hands-on activities. One of the first things I did when I got there was sew a few stitches in this lady's knee who had tripped and fallen on some stairs. She was a member of a relay team, and was supposed to run the half marathon. So I sewed her up, then gave her some ibuprofen, and put on a bandage. She actually came back after the race was over to say that I had done a good job and that her knee didn't bother her during the run. The rest of the time was mostly spent giving IV fluids to people who were feeling especially bad or dehydrated.
The first triathlon I ever went to was a sprint that Jeff did back when we first started dating. When I went I was amazed because the people there didn't look like super-fit athletes. They looked like, well,... me. At least many of them. In fact, it was at that race that I got the idea that I might be able to compete in something like that. Which I eventually did.
What I noticed at this event, though, is that these people look NOTHING like me. They are like a live anatomy lesson with every muscle visible and VERY well demarcated. Even though I certainly want to compete in more races and triathlons, I do not think I could ever be ready for something like this. Unless maybe I quit my job, started working out four times a day, hired a personal trainer, and started eating only carrots. With maybe some spinach thrown in for fun.
But here are a few somewhat blurry photos, taken with my phone since I had forgotten my camera.
The winner running up the hill (!!) at the end of the course.
No. 2 finisher a few minutes later.
The view inside the medical tent.
The swim start. The sun was aimed directly at us, hence the major glare. All the splashes in the middle are the swimmers.