• 11th May 2002 - By greg

    May 11, 2002 (pre trip)

    When I was being interviewed by SlowTwitch.com (an online triathlon magazine) on Friday, I was asked the question “what will you do next to top this?”. I realized that this trip is really just a warm up for the original idea – the ‘pure’ triathlon cross country trip.

    The idea was spawned last summer during a bike trip around Vancouver island with Helen and two great friends of ours. It was probably near the end of a long day of cycling – maybe even after a few major climbs. I was tired, but knew we still had some miles to go before we reached our camp ground. I remember wanting to get off my bike and run for a while to give my cycling legs the break they were demanding. It was then, I think, that the idea for a ‘true’ cross country triathlon trip evolved. I imagined cycling for a while each day, then somehow running with my bike and gear for an hour or two, then maybe even swimming across any lakes in the way while again, somehow towing my bike and gear through the water as I swim. I wondered for a brief moment, what kind of strange bike / run push cart / swimming thingy this contraption would be. The crazy triathlon cross country machine.

    I suppose this trip could be considered a sort of warm-up for something a bit more ‘pure’ – something definitely wackier.

    I would want to contact Guinness Book of World Record people and establish a new category possibly called “Most distance cross country covered by a solo, self supported, person travelling by using the three triathlon sports of swimming, cycling and running in approximately the same proportions as an IronMan triathlon”. The ‘rules’ for such a challenge would be:

    1. The competitor must cover the proposed distance solo and self supported meaning that he/she must carry all food and other necessities required for the duration of the journey (sleeping bag, tent, cooking equipment, clothing, etc). Water can be supplied on route as required. No hotel or hostel stays are permitted.

    2. The competitor must carry with him/her all gear required for the entire trip at all times meaning that he/she must cycle, run AND swim while towing, carrying, pushing or pulling a bike, food, and sleeping gear.

    3. The total number of miles logged must be comprised of 18% running, 80% cycling and 2% open water swimming.

    Anyhow – further to this trip being a ‘test-run’ for the more ambitious world record attempt, I’m still dealing with making my “running while pushing the trike” something that is more similar to just “plain running” rather than the “running while pushing a shopping cart down narrow isles at the grocery store” that it seems to be sometimes.

    Today I tested out my newest fangled modification – a push bar that rises up from the handles allowing me to shove the trike with my chest while my arms continue to swing back and forth in the normal running style. It actually works really well – except that after an hour, the ‘bump pad’ started to rub the skin on my chest raw as you can clearly see in the photo that I have included below:

    Seven days to go and my ‘to do’ list is getting longer rather than shorter! Next week is going to be busy. Not only must I pack for the trip and pack for Ironman (Helen is bringing my tri bike and Ironman gear with her and I need to have it packed and ready for her flight), I also need to do my LAST long bike ride (6 hours) and my last long run (3 hours+) and one more long swim (1 hour, 45 minutes).

    Plus, there are a some interview requests to coordinate with a Montana newspaper and two triathlete magazines on Monday (my 15 minutes of fame I guess).

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