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A greener way to race

As I was deciding which triathlons to compete in this summer (because, yes, June 8th at Keuka Lake is to be my first triathlon) I noticed a trend with several race applications.

The question was: How were you going to offset your carbon footprint at the race?

You could car pool or ride your bike to the race. Or you could calculate your "carbon cost" and tack it on to your registration.

Interesting I thought.

So on this Earth Day, I looked a bit into the idea of greening races -- making them more environmentally friendly. Because it's not just the cars that drive the racers to the event that creates a nasty carbon footprint but all those disposable plastic cups at the aid stations and water bottles at the end of the race which end up in the trash can instead of being recycled.

I found two sites on the web which are designed to help race directors run a more eco-friendly race: Athletes for a Fit Planet and 5430 Sports.

Additionally, in my handy USA Triathlon magazine this month is a note that the XTERRA ECO TEAM is researching how to turn old and leftover swim caps into flip flops.

Meanwhile, I think about what I can do to help keep races green and that includes recycling my water bottles and bringing my own reusable bottle with me.

And trust me, I needed to tote around my own water bottle all day yesterday. Yes, three workouts scheduled, three workouts completed. A friend asked when I find time to actually, you know, work. Well, run in the morning, spin at lunch time and swim at night. Leaves more than enough time to get my actual day job done.

It was a long, long, long day and ended with 3,000 yards of swimming. Oh, and that 3,000 yards included just two sets after the warm up -- each of 1,000 yards. It wasn't always pretty (I am so focused on pushing my body up that my swim coach needed to stop and correct my reach and catch on the stroke) but I swam 1,000 yards without stopping. Twice.

Thankfully today is an easy 45 minute run.

Never did I think I would be thankful for 45 minutes of running. It's amazing how quickly your perspective can change.

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