Swim, Bike, Sprint to the 2010 Indoor Tri

Published: February 25, 2010 | Read Time: 3 minutes

First you swim, then you bike and finally, with all the energy you’ve left to muster, you sprint.

Ultimately using every major muscle in your body and exhausting your lungs, you do all of this without resting, advancing toward a distant endpoint. As you cross the finish line, you smile, you beam. And even after the rush of accomplishment fades, after your aching legs and shoulders relax, you make plans to do it all again.

Some may call it crazy, but triathlon athletes just call it fun, and many local athletes will rise to this challenge at the third annual indoor triathlon next Saturday, March 6, in the J.L. Sorenson Physical Education Building at Southern Utah University.

Sponsored by the SUU Triathlon Club and SUU Outdoor Center, this triathlon will differ from the standard test of endurance to which many tri-athletes are accustomed. Though most triathlons are swim-bike-run ordered, the indoor triathlon at SUU will switch up the events: bike, run, swim.

Also, rather than pedaling past competitors, contestants will remain dead even over a ten-mile course – on stationary bikes. They will then jump onto waiting treadmills, with a similar feeling that nothing feels fast enough when you can’t see where your competitors stand in a 3.1 mile footrace.

At long last and with tired legs, they will dive into a pool – finally able to push, paddle and reach past those around them in a 400-meter swim to the finish.

Even as they envision hamsters on a wheel, racing without going anywhere, and while the reverse order of events may prove challenging to long-conditioned muscle memory, they will still cross the finish line. And they will still call it fun.

And, believe it or not, this seemingly-backward world where exhaustion exhilarates will prove the ultimate testing ground for many newcomers to the sport: runners, bikers and swimmers who may one day find joy in diving into a cold lake only to emerge with miles of road and track at their feet.

In fact, according to Brack Mulliner, president of SUU’s Triathlon Club and seasoned tri-athlete, the backward structure of next weekend’s indoor triathlon will prove much more welcoming to beginning athletes than a standard triathlon.

He explains, “Participants will be able to move at their own pace without feeling pressure by the progress of those around them.”

Additionally, as an indoor event dependent upon stationary exercise equipment, participants will not have to worry about weather conditions or providing their own equipment.

All are welcome to join in the challenge. Registration, for the seasoned tri-athlete and beginner alike is limited to 70 participants, with a deadline of March 6. In addition to the thrill of accomplishment, participants will receive an SUU Triathlon t-shirt for a minimal $18 registration fee.

A fundraiser for the student-run Triathlon Club at SUU, the money raised at this year’s indoor triathlon will provide funding for school uniforms, as the club often travels to compete as a team.

The Triathlon Club also hopes the indoor, beginner-friendly triathlon will encourage those who are unsure about competing in this kind of physical test – bolstering their confidence by providing optimal conditions for success.

To register for this weekend’s Indoor Triathlon, contact the SUU Outdoor Recreation Center located in the Sharwan Smith Student Center: 435-865-8704.

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