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First Triathlon Story and Triathlete Profile: Bobby Medders

Bobby MeddersWell, I did it! I finished in 53:57, thanks in part to a leaking front tire on my borrowed bike and a 4:04 T1 time. Other than that, it was amazing! I've run plenty of road races, and ran the local Marine Mud Run a couple times but nothing matches a triathlon. The transitions add such an element of strategy to it. I can't wait to do the next one!


  • How long have you been doing triathlons?
    This was my first one, and it was AWESOME!
  • How do you balance workouts with family/job responsibilities?
    It's tough with a full time and a part time job. I belong to the YMCA and try to swim/workout early in the mornings before work. On days off, I take the family and we all swim.
  • What inspired you to try a triathlon?
    My friend Ronnie, who is very competitive, suggested I give them a try.
  • What is the best advice you can give a newbie?
    Train train train, and listen to those who have already done them. I picked up great advice along the way. One tip I got, but didn't do....at least once while you train, transition from bike to run so you'll know what to expect as far as how weak your legs will be for the first mile or so. YOU HAVE NO IDEA!!! Oh, and at the minimun, buy some elastic laces and a race belt to cut down on transition times.
  • What is your favorite workout?
    So far my favorite is the swim, however I don't own my own bike yet. When I get one, I think I'll enjoy the bike a lot too, along with brick training.
  • Where and when is your first triathlon? What is the distance?
    Here in Knoxville, Tennessee at the Westside YMCA. 200 yd. swim, 7 mi. bike, and a 4K run. I finished 105th overall out of 165 competitors, and 13th in my age group.


  • How does your pre-triathlon vision compare with what the actual event?
    Some surprises, and some other things I expected. I swam a lot faster than I ever had in training. My legs weren't quite as miserable coming off the bike as I had readied myself for....but close. After the race, and the days following, I hardly had any soreness which surprised me. The bike went about as I expected as far how challenging I thought it would be.
  • What was your favorite part of your first triathlon?
    Crossing the finish line. I know that's a canned answer, but it being my first one it was amazing to have completed it and have it behind me. Aside from that, the swim was awesome! Not sure why because I started way back in line and only passed a few people, but something about it was really neat.
  • What was the most challenging part of your first triathlon?
    The first mile of the run. Waiting for my legs to get back under me after the bike is an experience you should train to avoid, though I know that's not entirely possible.
  • What advice would you give a newbie now that you’ve completed your first triathlon?
    Pick out a short sprint triathlon, and while you should train all you can for it, just focus on completing it. When it's over, no matter what your time or place is, you'll know you've done something that you can be very proud of.
  • What’s next for you?
    I have two more sprint triathlons planned in the next two months. Varying distances, but pretty close to the first one. Also while I know it will be a while, I hope to complete an olympic distance triathlon one day.

Bobby from Tennessee

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