Beth places 3rd

Last buoy turn. Finishing strong.

Setting & Crushing Milestones

Carolina Multisports athlete, Beth Cook, represented well with her 3rd place finish in her age group this weekend at the Hurricane swim at Jordan Lake. Currently living in Roanoke, VA, Beth was searching for a break through in her open water swimming.

Beth was an regular at the local Master’s Swim team. But even though her coach was only feet from her, she wasn’t getting the feedback and coaching she needed.

Not knowing it if was even feasible, Beth reached out over the summer. Not being local, we communicated often, managed her workouts through her TrainingPeaks account, and her husband sent me several videos of her swimming. Coupled with video analyses, drills, and specialized workout sessions, Beth put in the work and broke through this weekend with a huge PR, dropping 15 minutes off her 2 mile time!!!

We’ll done Beth. I can’t wait to see you crush your next goal.

CM athletes having fun this weekend at the Sandling Beach Triathlon, both racing and volunteering. David and Paulette tore up the course while a couple of us volunteered behind the scenes.

ITU Multisport World Championships, Almere, Netherlands

Racing with Team USA this year was an experience of a lifetime! The certainly rolled out the red carpet for us.

Traveling during the COVID -19 restrictions made the visa application process much more difficult and stressful but everything came through just in the nick of time. One big perk of traveling during COVID restrictions was the empty transatlantic flight! I had an entire row to myself! And with a plane that seats several hundred people and with only about 20 of us on the flight, I practically had the entire plane to myself too!

I went several days early to get acclimated to the time change. Being able to get out and do some sightseeing helped keep me busy so I could get used to the local time.

It didn’t take long to get into race mode. I scouted to course and did a few workouts to familiarize myself with the lay of the course.

Before I knew it, race morning had arrived.

The swim went great! I set a personal record.

The first transition came and went effortlessly.

Heading out on the bike felt great too. But shortly after doing so, my stomach started feeling bad. It kept getting worse and worse and I kept getting slower and slower.

T2 was a relief mentally because the bike portion was over but little did I know, the toughest part of the race was just ahead.

Once I started the run, the bouncing of my stomach was too much. I visited every porta-potty for the first half of the marathon! Not only was it physically taxing to just complete the race, but the added complications made it excruciating. On top of that, I was fighting the mental and emotional battle of not quitting. Many of my teammates gave me encouragement and support. I was also fortunate to have a couple of personal friends that made the trip with me that provided a lot of support.

In the end, I finished. It wasn’t the race I wanted or planned for, but being able to focus enough to persevere through the darkness moments taught me a lot about myself.

Niki, Mike, & Degaulle IMCHOO 2021

Purposeful Racing

I watched an episode recently of, The Little House on the Prairie, where Charles Ingalls was traveling for work and he was asked by another if he could join him for his company while he too traveled to look for work. In the end, it was the friendship developed that was more valuable an gold.

This weekend was a similar experience for me. Traveling to Chattanooga this weekend to cheer on some friends in an Ironman triathlon was truly a pleasure and an unforgettable experience.

For Niki, it was her first. For Mike, it was number 26! For Degaulle, it was a return to the sport that helped save his life. As night fell and the fatigue of the day started to set in, it was moving to watch each of them dig deep to find the victory that was inside each of them. Everyone has a different reason for doing an Ironman event. I was inspired this weekend with each of their stories and I’m humbled and grateful to be called a friend.

Team USA racing

2020 was a weird year with most events being canceled or postponed due to COVID-19. Gyms, fitness centers, and pools also closed, making it harder to train. However, I didn’t let that slow me down. Most of my training took place outdoors anyway, so I kept working hard as if I were still racing despite the circumstances. Like so many, my garage also became my new fitness center with a few new purchases.

The summer of 2020 was hot and humid of course. I had every excuse to say, “Why am I doing all this training? I’m not doing any events.” My coach, Jackie Miller, with BritFit Personal Training and Coaching, kept me focused.

I remained hopeful that a race would eventually be held that year but it just didn’t seem likely. Surprisingly, I got an urgent email from her in late September saying the Great Floridian Triathlon was going live in October and I should sign up. It was also a USAT qualifying race. I signed up immediately. More than anything, I wanted to bring closure to a tough year of training.

The race was a success. I had friends and family around me for support during the race and celebration afterward to make it even better.

It wasn’t until February of this year that I got an invitation from Team USA, that I had qualified to race with them and represent the USA at the ITU Multisport World Championships in Holland in September of this year! Needless to say, I was thrilled to get the invitation and I look forward to another year of training and a trip to Europe.

Don’t give up on your goals no matter what life throws at you. Life is too short for excuses. Pursue your passions singlemindedly. 2020 had its challenges and obstacles but there is always an opportunity to be found.

Hi, I’m Joel

I found sports as a young kid enjoyable. I played soccer and I wrestled. I enjoyed the camaraderie of my teams. I was influenced by great coaches, mentors, and friends. I learned many life lessons along the way that shaped my life with unforgettable experiences. Through adversity and success, lasting memories and friendships were created.

As an adult, I found myself spending each day locked in the routine of “everyday life.” Each year that went by, I was losing the vitality and excitement of life that defined my youth. I needed a change.

I looked to my youth for inspiration and took on the challenge of learning a new sport. I hired a coach and completed my first sprint triathlon. I was hooked. I wanted to do a longer one. I did. As I was training for my first Ultra Triathlon (140.6 miles), something really special happened. The longer the workouts got, the more time I had to spend inside my head. I thought I was doing something to get away from my problems but I was forced to face them each day. Those were uncomfortable days, not necessarily physically, but mentally and spiritually. However, new goals were set. More adversity prevailed, but new miles stones were achieved. My coach and triathlon changed my life. Through it all, new life lessons were learned and lasting memories and new friends continue to be a constant reward.

Out of this experience, I started Carolina Multisports Endurance Training and Coaching. Whatever reason you are interested in doing an endurance sport, let me know what it is. I want to share in your journey. It is my passion to help you do something that sounds impossible. To reach a little harder than you normally would for something meaningful. To help you tune in a little more clearly to that still, small voice guiding you along the way.