You’ve competed in so many events over the years. What are some of the strangest things you’ve seen on the way to the finishline?
Having been in the sport of triathlon since 1988, I have seen a lot of odd happens along the way: nausea, nudity, costumes, marriage proposals, fights….Here are some of the more memorable moments:
At the LaPorte Triathlon in 1988 or 1989, no one ever talked about the high schooler who won the race afterwards (a friend of mine who went on to swim at Clemson University). Instead, no one could stop talking about the busty blonde who dropped her swimsuit top in the transition area, put on a sports bra, and then put the swimsuit top back on before heading out on the bike and run portions of the race.
In the 1990s, I participated in a triathlon in North Houston late in the season, in early November. In Texas, the weather can change on a dime, and that day it did. Midway through the bike portion, a cold front blew in. It got so cold and rained so hard that a lot of the competitors were not able to take their helmets off when they finished the bike portion and ran the entire 5k with their helmets on. One Master’s athlete even did the entire race in his wetsuit!
I’m the subject of the last one. It was my first full triathlon at Ironman Florida. I had a foolproof nutrition plan for the bike and run…or so I thought. My plan went great until I heard the voices of my friends from Austin saying, “Don’t drink water; it has no calories. You should drink Gatorade instead.” So, I added Gatorade on top of all the other sports drinks I was consuming. Shortly after mile 60, my stomach decided to revolt from all the sugar. Without leaving my bike, I proceeded to hurl at least a half dozen times until there was absolutely nothing left in the tank. Somewhere along the way, another competitor rode past, and all I heard was, “It’s going to be a long day for that guy!”
Amy Marsh is a four time Ironman champion, two time IronDistance champion, and was named the 2010 USAT Long Distance Triathlete of the Year. Brandon Marsh has been competing in triathlons since 1988, and can be counted on to be a top-10 contender in every event he enters. Got a question about swim-bike-run or sports nutrition for Team Marsh? Email them at email@example.com. On Twitter, follow Brandon @BrandonMarshTX and follow Amy @AmyCMarsh.