The adrenaline was flowing! Everyone was pumped! Some nervous, some excited, but everyone ready! It was even exciting to be there as a spectator. This was the 2010 Triathlon Extremo Coronado!
This annual Coronado event, known as Triathlon Extremo due to the many hills in the area that the cyclists must face in the bike portion of the event, drew close to 100 participants this year. And as everyone gathered down at the water’s edge at the Coronado Beach Club at 7 AM on Sunday morning, there were at least that many supporters there to cheer them on. The day was cool and a little overcast, just perfect for the participants. The triathlon began with a 750m swim in the ocean, followed by a 20km bike ride around Coronado and ended with a 5km run around the same neighborhood. The event was quite well organized with a sea-doo and boat out in the water watching for the swimmers, an ambulance on-site for any incidents, and lots of water and liquids everywhere for participants to rehydrate. And, there was a great turnout from the Coronado expat crowd! Most were participants on a team, each member taking a leg of the journey, and one was actually brave enough to take on the challenge all by himself.
However, for me, the most exciting part was seeing two of my co-workers compete!!! Jamuna Burry took on the swimming; Vicente Guzman took on the bike race; and Corrin Skubin joined them to take the running portion which concluded with a run in the sand on the beach! They were all fantastic and made a great team! But so were all the other participants, including the second oldest person to compete, Steve Jorgenson. Steve is one of those people we hear about who often inspire us to get up off the couch ourselves. Steve is 63, and up until 9 months ago, he did little to no exercise. But when Steve made the permanent move to Panama and met another expat who ran triathlons, he decided that he would take up the challenge of training for the Coronado event. He completed all three portions of the triathlon himself: his first 750m swim, his first 20km bike race, and his first 5km run! He did an amazing job and can now tell his grandchildren about competing in his first triathlon. Way to go Steve!!
It was interesting to see that the amount of time it took to complete the circuit wasn't what was important to our Coronado gang. What was important to each of them was finishing the race, doing the best they could, and being proud of themselves and their accomplishments,….not the clock. The competition was really with themselves. The drive and determination was evident on everyone's face. It was a fantastic experience for participant and spectator alike.
If you would like to compete next year and need more information, then check out the following link www.panamacanaltriathalon.com. Several different events are held throughout the year with varying levels of difficulty, as many of our local participants showed, its never to late to try something new!