This past Sunday, I went up to Moraine State Park to check out 2 of our members, Noe & Greg, for their sprint triathlon. The event was the Mighty Moraine Man. Let me say this, it was a very well run event given there were several different categories of triathlons being run, I could hardly keep up. Triathlons are not for the faint of heart. They are challenging.
Noe, who recovered from 2 back injuries and surgery, is not faint of heart.
Noe has had quite a journey. Having always been a fish as she says, swimming has been a favorite activity of hers for a long time. Given the opportunity to train and cultivate it at a young age, it could’ve led to something special in the way our young athletes flourish. She’s also run and biked much of her life.
As what almost seems the next step, later on in adulthood, she took up triathlons. Triathlons are events where you swim, bike, and run in succession as one race. They can be of varying distances that range from far, to “are you insane” far.
In 2019, Noe suffered a back injury doing crossfit. She had rehabbed it, but then reinjured it biking earlier in 2020 That rendered her unable to compete at her best, and in fact she walked the 5k of the Mighty Moraine Man triathlon in 2020, Afterwards, she got surgery on her back at the end of 2020.
For those who don’t know, back surgery is intense no matter what procedure is done, back surgery is intense & can truly mess with a person’s confidence to move well, let alone compete.
Well, Noe is quite dedicated and intense. Over the course of 2021 she took her rehab as an opportunity to become a better swimmer. As her back recovered she began to bike and swim. Relentless, she did a triathlon relay in the spring where she swam as our friends Greg and Jack biked and ran the other legs.
We met in the summer as she was determined to get back to it and wanted to work on her running. 3x a week, she came out to Trackside to run alongside really fast kids and trained in the gym to get her legs and core strong. She got faster (won her age group in the Run Around the Square 5k) and was able to complete a 6 mile distance as she was worried about having the back strength to complete that distance and didn’t reaaaaalllllyyyyyy want me to have her try it.
This past weekend, she completed the Mighty Moraine Man in a time of 1:30 and 1st in her age group, 7th overall woman, and placed 20th overall of 128 people. In 2020 she completed the final 5k in 50min because she walked. On Sunday she ran it in 27 minutes.
And I only include this part because they joked about it in our group chat and it seems it was a known goal of hers between them: She beat Greg. By 20 seconds.
Kudos Noe. Completing triathlons after back surgery is certainly not for the faint of heart. Glad to tell the story.
While your life may or may not include this type of event, you’ll have moments that challenge you to bounce back, big and small.
You got this.