Bucket List Trip for Elite Athletes
If you had an opportunity to spend a week on the French Riviera, what would you look forward to most? HealthPoint Fitness members Terry Crocker and Sarah Eftink are planning a trip to the south of France the first week in September and on their list of things to do--- “Compete in the Iron Man 70.3 World Championship.” This elite athletic event may not be a bucket list item for most travelers, but will be an amazing accomplishment for these two tri-athletes.
“We didn’t have the world championship as a specific goal,” says Terry, “but after we both qualified for the event at a recent Half Iron Man competition in Muncie, IN, we decided to make the trip.” It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to compete with athletes from around the world. In fact, over 3000 qualified competitors, both professional and amateur, will descend on Nice, France to swim one and a half miles in the Mediterranean Sea, bike 30 miles through a challenging hill course once used for the Tour de France, and run 13.1 miles along the sea shore. The women’s event will take place on Saturday, September 7 and the men will compete on Sunday, September 8.
The two athletes train separately, completing workouts as their busy schedules allow. “I do longer training sessions two days a week and less lengthy sessions four days a week. That leaves one day for rest and recovery,” says Sarah. And, Sarah fits in these workouts around her professional life as an Emergency Department nurse.
Terry is a 53-year-old, seasoned athlete who started out as a trail runner. “After being injured, I got into triathlons,” he said. He currently serves on the board of the SEMO Tri-Athlete Team, a group of 35 or so local triathlon enthusiasts. He has been a member of HealthPoint for four years and is quick to compliment the quality of the facility, staff and equipment. “People don’t realize just what a great place this is,” he smiled.
Terry and Sarah are both going into the championships with a positive attitude. “My goal is to finish around the five hour mark,” said Terry. Sarah smiled and noted that her goal “is to not finish last and to simply enjoy the experience.” Both feel that the chance to be shoulder to shoulder with some of the world’s best athletes is reason enough to participate.
After the competition, the couple will be able to relax and explore Nice and the surrounding area. “We have rented a beautiful apartment and plan to sightsee and enjoy life in France for a few days,” they shared.
For those who would like to monitor how these two athletes are doing during the competitions, download the Ironman Tracker app on your phone to receive periodic updates on their times. And, the event will be streaming live on Facebook.com/Ironmanlivenow. Sarah’s bib is #944 and Terry will wear #690.