Happy spring, ygk! I love this time of year. The sun is shining, birds are singing and people are emerging, bleary-eyed from their homes ready to embrace the longer days. I love keeping track of the various signs of spring I come across at this time of year: a crocus in my yard, tulips starting to sprout up, seeing the causeway back in action, tour boats returned to their docks and groups of cyclists finishing up their rides as I drive along highway 2 each morning. It’s training season!
Now that the temperature is rising, we are seeing more and more people going outside to be active and a lot of these folks are doing this with specific goals in mind. Kingston and the surrounding area has a pretty good variety of athletic events available to us that range from catering to the elite athlete to people like me who like to set a goal to help us stay on our fitness track. Six years ago, on my thirtieth birthday, I tipsily shook on a deal to compete in the K-Town Triathlon that occurs over the Civic long weekend in August. OK, “compete” isn’t the right word, more like “drag myself to the finish line”. I trained hard with a couple of friends, with lots of very early mornings and very cold swims in Lake Ontario. The day finally came and not only did I do it, but I lived to tell about it! This started a new interest for me and I went on to complete a couple more runs and three more triathlons. I haven’t done a race in two years now but am feeling the pull again since Harvey has decided to the Sydenham Tri this year.
While training for a triathlon is a lot of work and a huge commitment, there is something magical about being a part of such an event. The feeling of support and mutual understanding that goes on between the athletes is incredibly uplifting. I did my first tri on a mountain bike, which is really tough, especially when everyone is whizzing by you on their high end road bikes. Every time I was passed by someone who was clearly a lot more serious than myself, they always said something supportive and motivating as they passed: “You’re doing great!”, “Keep going, you’re awesome!”, “You can do it!” It was an incredible experience.
I’ve also enjoyed cheering people on from the sidelines. It’s exciting and even emotional to watch people complete such a challenging goal. Charitable events have an especially strong emotional element that can leave athletes and their fan base feeling incredibly proud. So, whether you’re lining up at the starting line or waiting with your noise maker at the finish line, this week we want to know:
Which local summer sporting event is your favourite?
- Beat Beethoven Run (44%, 181 Votes)
- K-Town Triathlon (30%, 125 Votes)
- Sydenham Triathlon (19%, 78 Votes)
- Wolfe Island Classic (4%, 16 Votes)
- Canada Day Limestone Mile (3%, 12 Votes)
- Limestone Race Weekend (1%, 3 Votes)
Total Voters: 415
If you take a look at the Kingston Road Runners Association’s website, you’ll notice right away that this list is not even close to complete. Just runs alone could make a large list of options for this week’s poll but we wanted to include triathlons/duathlons as well, so we hand picked the events we consider to be some of the more popular and well-known in our area. If we’ve missed something really obvious to you, please drop off a comment below and tell us about it. We’d love to know more about your association with these types of events too. Are you a participant, a supporter or maybe even an organizer? Tell us what it is about these races that keeps you coming back.
Thanks to Anthony for today’s photo.