Category Archives: Team Member Race Reports

Race Report: Townebank 8k

Following is a guest post by Team Zer, Lisa C., who recently completed her first 8k in Virginia Beach, the Shamrock Townebank 8k.  Congratulations!

We’ve all heard the phrase “Always a bridesmaid, never a bride.”  That was me and running and triathlon.  I did support for countless marathons/Ironmen over many years, including Marine Corps Marathon; Shamrock Marathon; the Richmond, Boston, and Philadelphia marathons; and Ironman Lake Placid!  So maybe that’s why this finish and PR meant so much to me.

Continue reading Race Report: Townebank 8k

Race Report: The Anthem Shamrock Half Marathon

Following is a guest post by Team Zer, Eileen S., who recently completed her first half marathon in Virginia Beach, the Anthem Shamrock Half Marathon.  Way to go, Eileen!  Let this be the first of many happy half marathons!

Kevin and I signed up for the Shamrock Half marathon as our very first half marathon.  We did our best to follow the training plan over the winter, but a number of factors, including the weather, kept us from completing a number of the long runs.  Still, we headed off to Virginia Beach hoping that the training that we were able to do prepared us enough to complete the race.  We spent Saturday cheering on the runners in the 8k race, and then enjoyed the pre-race dinner, met dozens of other Zers, and listened to Alexis’ pep talk.  We were ready.

We set three goals for the race:

  1. Start;
  2. Finish;
  3. Don’t get injured.

Since it was our first half, as long as we finished, we were guaranteed a PR, so neither of us was concerned about time.

We anticipated windy and cold conditions on race morning and were pleasantly surprised when we woke up to perfect running weather – 40s with very little wind.  Score!  We ambled the few blocks from our hotel to the start line, found our corral, and lined up with all the other runners.

Continue reading Race Report: The Anthem Shamrock Half Marathon

Don’t Dream it Be It Part III, Val Dix’s Prospective on 2013 Ironman Louisville

I did something a bit crazy and completed two full Ironman races just four weeks apart, one of them being one of the hottest Ironman races on the circuit. All of this, while being a very solid and proud Back-Of-The-Packer 16 hour+ Ironman finisher. Am I crazy?! Of course I am. I did not wake up one day and say “hey, I’m bored, how about I attempt to tackle a challenging ½ ironman in the Canary Islands, followed by the hardest Ironman bike course in the same location six months later, then do Ironman Lake Placid 10 weeks after that, and why not top it off with Ironman Louisville just four weeks after that?” I won’t go into details but I had my reasons for doing all of these races and I’m happy to discuss them with anyone who is curious offline. Continue reading Don’t Dream it Be It Part III, Val Dix’s Prospective on 2013 Ironman Louisville

Don’t Dream it Be It, Val Dix’s Prospective on 2013 Ironman Lake Placid

I DID IT!!! Those are the words that I repeated to myself so many times after I finished Ironman Lake Placid. It’s amazing how empowering those three little words are and it’s something that I hope all of you get to tell yourself and celebrate both within and outside of your triathlon careers in the near future.

In May 2013, I attempted and was not successful in completing Ironman Lanzarote, a race with a reputation of being one of the most challenging bike courses on the entire worldwide Ironman circuit. With that DNF over my head, on June 16th, right as I was beginning my build for Ironman Louisville, and just six weeks before Ironman Lake Placid, Coach Ed sends an email to the team announcing there were 10 slots available for Ironman Lake Placid. Armed with the ok on whether or not I should race from Coaches Ed and Tony Stocker, I decided I wanted my next big race to be with my friends and teammates and I wanted to share the experience of me overcoming a DNF with everyone. My goals were simple, get my ass to the finish line before the 17 hour cutoff. That’s it, no race plan, no over analyzing or over stressing the course or the weather forecast, just continue to move forward and take the day one swim stroke, pedal stroke, and foot step at a time. Continue reading Don’t Dream it Be It, Val Dix’s Prospective on 2013 Ironman Lake Placid

Ironman Mont Tremblant – Club Champions

Way to go folks.  This is the award that you earned, and that you should have received at the ceremony on race day.   You guys kick butt, and you deserve the recognition!  These are cool awards, except this one has some French on it (wink).   I can’t believe that 10 years ago we were just hanging out and trying to have fun.  And now, we are still hanging out and having fun except we seem to be much better at it than we used to.  Good job folks, way to represent – again – in a super positive light on the main stage!


mont tremblant 2



Ironman Cozumel Info Report

I raced Ironman Cozumel in 2011 with the team, and I thought I would write this report to give our future participants some info and perspective on the race.

Disclaimer: the information I’m providing is to help you prepare for the race. Please don’t rely solely on this information. This is my perspective from when Team Z raced it in 2011, 3 years ago. Things may have changed including the course, weather, aid stations, and any other race logistics. Go to the official Ironman Cozumel site for specifics and review the athlete guides and any other documentation they provide.

Continue reading Ironman Cozumel Info Report

Ironman Mont-Tremblant Race Report – Matt Watson


Matt Watson’s Ironman Mont-Tremblant Race Report

Fair warning, I had 12 hours on the drive home to collect my thoughts so this is a long, long, long report. I’m up to 9 pages.  I put the acknowledgements up front.  Hopefully you will get a least that far.

First off I have to thank my wife and my family.  Triathlon may be an individual discipline but it takes a team effort to get to the starting line.  Julie, Mom, Dad, Heather, Jennifer, Nate and Graham – I could not imagine this without having you to share it with.  This wasn’t just my race, it was ours.

Secondly, I have to thank the Team Z coaches.  As I said, this is a team effort and having you there to guide me and support me made all the difference.  Ryan, Ed, and Alexis – thank you for your guidance and patience answering my un-ending questions.  Alyssa, Scott, Amy, and Jessica – thank you for teaching me how to swim and then how to fly.

Finally, I have to thank my teammates.  Your dedication, drive, humor, and passion for this sport is both inspiring and humbling.  This really is the greatest Triathlon team in the world because of you.  I’m not going to name names for fear of forgetting someone but you know who you are and what you mean to me. Continue reading Ironman Mont-Tremblant Race Report – Matt Watson

Jeff’s Race Report


When I started triathlon, I had turned 40 and wanted something new to try for that year.  It’s difficult to make a claim on youth at 40.  Mistakes are no longer “youthful indiscretions.”  Commitments and Very Serious Things demand our attention – mortgages, memos, car payments, staff meetings.

At the time, my first triathlon was also a Very Serious Thing.  Even though it was ‘only’ an Olympic distance – I was dialed in.  Gels, bike clothes, swim strategy…backup gels, backup bike clothes, backup swim strategy (much needed as I got lost during the point to point swim).
Continue reading Jeff’s Race Report

Team Z takes on the Fat Bet – Triathlon Fitness Across Washington, D.C. Area

From “Granny”

I just checked Fatbet to see if I had time to lose any more weight. Turns out the challenge ended three weeks ago. 


It’s a bit late, I know, but congratulations to all of the participants. It was a long winter’s fight for sure. Whether we posted only once or twice, persisted through a hundred ups and downs or dropped weight like a stone, we all toed the line. And for that we can be proud.

I am curious, though. What was the relationship between rate of weight loss and number of workouts per week? Did those  zigs and zags on some charts reflect irregular workout schedules, nutritional stumbles or both? And what about those who stopped posting? Did they stop losing?

I did. And after much reflection, I decided I stopped losing because February sucked.

Wait, that’s not right. I stopped losing because JANUARY sucked. I started gaining because not only did February totally suck, it brought with it aisles and aisles of little foil-covered chocolate hearts. And which I felt absolutely awful for eating. Until I read one of the promises. “Remind yourself that it’s okay not to be perfect.” Awww. It understands. No dieter is perfect. Another said, “Curl up and take a cat nap!” Who knew confectionery could be so wise? The third read, “It’s OK to not do it at all.” 

Say again? 
“It’s OK to not do it at all.”  Wait. I don’t have to ride in minus 20 degree windchill? “Nope. Swim at Zero dark frikkin early?
 “Uh-uh. Get a couple of miles in on a treadmill?
 “Nope. Not at all!” And it’s OK? “Yep. It’s OK!” Oh I loved these chocolates!! A couple of weeks after that bag was emptied and gone, I found a red foil wrapper tucked in the pocket of my jeans. Smoothing it out on the top of the washer, I read it once again. “It’s OK not to do it all.” Wait. What? “It’s OK not to do it all.” Did it just say –

“It’s OK not to do IT ALL.


Anyone up for another Fatbet?