#MSCLakeside: Like Wildfire

The Season in a Nutshell

It seems like the start of this year’s Sketcher’s Performance MultiSport Canada Triathlon Series was only yesterday. I still remember, quite vividly, the level of anticipation that I had in the beginning of the season prior to racing my first duathlon this year in Welland. Faced with a jam-packed summer of duathlons as a first year MultiSport Canada Ambassador, I felt a different kind of motivation and drive that I’ve never felt before. I felt stronger, prouder, and certainly more ambitious as I prepared to compete in multiple back-to-back races, tackling new distances, and gearing up my mental game to prime my body for the onslaught that it’s about to go through.

More than anything however, I felt a certain level of urgency for this sport. As much as this season was all about reaching new heights in my athletic journey, it’s also more importantly about the impact that I can make as an ambassador for other people. I hosted a running clinic with the Running Room as part of my ambassadorship, got involved as a volunteer in several races (my experience in Gravenhurst being my most memorable one), connected with Try-A-Tri athletes about their first MultiSport experience, and “pulling in” a committed group of friends into the sport that keeps me going. Everyone, meet the “Empire”.


Back to front: Jordan, Kari, Jazz, Trevor, Kevin, Dempsey

You may recognize them as the loudest and the most entertaining group of spectators at MultiSport races. Since the beginning of my duathlon career, they’ve cheered me on at every one of my race including the ITU MultiSport World Championships in Penticton, BC. In fact, they have become EVERYONE’s biggest supporters. They’ve cheered on every athlete wherever they go, providing them with much needed energy, positivity, and encouragement. I am extremely grateful and proud to have a loving group of friends who has provided me with unwavering support throughout my athletic journey.

The First of Many Firsts


This past weekend was MultiSport Canada’s last race of the series. As expected, it proved to be a very memorable one. Lakeside as a venue was scenic, intimate, and charming. It also happened to be the site of Kevin’s and Jazz’s very first duathlon! To make it even more special, two more of our friends, Ari and Kirill, participated in their first duathlons as well! Jordan, Trevor and myself, as current MultiSport athletes, really made sure that our four friends are well-supported (from nutrition to transition tips) for their first MultiSport race.

Indeed, the tables have turned. This time, we were their loudest cheerleaders.

We were all there on Saturday for the sprint duathlon to see the four of them race. Naturally, there were nervous moments but surely, there were plenty of excitement from our first timers. Prior to the start of their race, we walked them through setting up their transition areas and helped them through the registration steps. May I mention that there were many laughs as they were being body-marked for the first time!

Moments before the race start, we reviewed the race rules and I took them through a gentle warm up. Before we knew it, they were off!

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We cheered so much that we forgot to take more pictures of their race! It’s a great thing that MultiSport Canada provides race pictures for free to commemorate every athlete’s race experience. Our first timers were all smiles at the end of their races and as someone who has had a positive influence on their experience, I felt a great sense of pride in their accomplishment.

Ari shared his thoughts on his first duathlon experience with MultiSport Canada:


“I am a long time road cyclist and quite comfortable with riding long distances. However, there is something about doing a run before and after a bike ride that creates a physical challenge far greater than doing any one activity on its own. On top of the physical challenge, there are the transitions from running to cycling, and then from cycling to running. Based on these challenges, I was a little nervous going into my first event. Fortunately, I received amazing support from my participant friends and experienced duathletes who calmed my nerves and made my experience fun and exciting. Thanks to positive encouragement and coaching from Dempsey, I was inspired to take part in this event and challenge myself in a way I never would have. This experience has motivated me to add running to my exercise mix so that I can excel at both activities. Based on this memorable experience, I look forward to doing my next duathlon.”

Kirill was thrilled after having completed his race and shared these very genuine words with me:


“My MultiSport race experience was amazing! It had a community feel, staff and volunteers made me feel very welcomed. It was very well organized and email instructions were super clear. My personal MultiSport ambassador, Dempsey, shared a lot useful tips on pre and post race nutrition and hydration. He lead a pre race warm up and advised on how to set up my equipment in the transition zone in the most efficient way. All of his advise lead to a very successful race for me. Dempsey and his cheer squad supported me all throughout the race, and gave that much needed moral support.”


Kevin also shared his great race experience on social media despite having a challenging bike. I truly believe we will see more of him in the future races!


“Multisport event”, “Duathlete”, “transition area setup” are all words and concepts that seemed so foreign to someone who never saw himself as anything but a spectator. Fast forward to this past weekend and I’m staring the start line down thinking, “what did I do?!” and before I can answer that question we’re all off, racing ourselves to the finish line with encouraging voices cheering me on from the sidelines. The same voices that cheered on my registration and then my training.  One of the loudest voices came from a Multisport Ambassador, Dempsey Cruz, whose wise words of advice were always well timed (so as not to overwhelm me) and much needed. Having a friendly face with a passion for the event encourage me along the way made the whole experience less intimidating. Now it’s done. And on to the next duathlon!”

Last but certainly not least, our friend Jazz promises that he’ll be back with vengeance next year:



“So today marks another first for me. Today I took part in my first sprint duathlon; 5k run 20k bike 2.5k run. What an amazing experience! Set the bar to beat for next year and my 5k was a PB! Shout outs to @kev_ponte who also ran his first dü, @cruzdemp for amazing coaching and inspiring to try the sport, and @jordytown @karigbell @hoppystar for spectator duty!”

It was truly humbling to read their kind words and see how grateful they all were for the support they received during their first duathlon. MultiSport Canada Race Series always seem to have this effect on first time participants. It is a true testament to all the hard work and commitment that John Salt, Jason Vurma, the MultiSport Canada team, and the volunteers put out to create a welcoming, positive race experience for both first- time and returning athletes. I’m overwhelmed with so much joy that our friends experienced first hand the reasons why I keep racing with MultiSport Canada, and that they will all likely be back to race next season!

Mind Over Matter

The next day, the gang was back to cheer me on for my race. This was my last duathlon of the season before I compete next week at Barrelman in Niagara Falls, my final A-race of the year. Since returning from Penticton, I’ve found it challenging to get back to training and find my stride. I head into this race feeling pretty anxious, unprepared, and untrained. Thankfully, I had the best supporters to negate any form of self-doubt that I had on my mind. As suspected, the competition was fierce but I gave it my all.

The first run was fast and furious. I tried to keep up with the lead group of runners but I could only keep up a sub-4:00 pace for a few kilometres until my fatigue got the better of me. I was the 4th duathlete into T1 after three fierce athletes, Garvin, Scott and Ricardo. The bike course was scenic with rolling hills. Despite losing two places on the 40km course, I maintained composure, stay focused, and just enjoyed the sights. I made sure to hydrate and re-fuel with my F2C Glyco-Durance on the bike. This set me up nicely for the last 5km of the race. I managed to hold my place on the last run, finishing 7th overall and 1st in my age group. Special thanks to Ryan Dockman and Darren Cooney, fellow ambassadors, who volunteered this weekend in Lakeside despite not racing.


My trusted BLADE Carbon Wheels!

2017-09-10 | 2017 MultiSport Lakeside Triathlon (Sun)

Two thumbs up!

2017-09-10 | 2017 MultiSport Lakeside Triathlon (Sun)

Being silly on the podium 🙂

Many thanks to my supporters this season:

  • MultiSport Canada Triathlon Race Series for the Ambassador opportunity. I hope to be back next year to bring on more first time multisport athletes!
  • BLADE Carbon Wheels for giving me some serious fighting power this season. I’m proud to be an ambassador and on the BLADE race team. I can’t stop talking about how PERFECT my wheels are!
  • F2C Nutrition for truly revitalizing my training and race day nutrition. I’m thankful to see your tent at every race!
  • My blog readers and followers. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and share my race experiences with me on my blog site.
  • My friends and family. You all keep me going. Thank you for the ongoing love and support.

Next stop: Barrelman!




#MSCBracebridge: Something Bigger Than Myself

The Journey Continues

This race season has been quite the whirlwind! Rewinding a few paces back, in the still- wintry month of March when I was just starting to plan my race calendar, many would agree that I was pretty ambitious then. My partner, Jordan and I naturally have ongoing discussions about our life choices (mainly pertaining to training and racing) and always arrive at the same familiar, great big question: why do we keep doing this?

It’s hard to believe that this is only my second season of racing and I know that I still have a long way to go to reach my peak. I’ve decided on three “A races” this season:

  1. Ironman 70.3 Muskoka
  2. ITU Standard Duathlon MultiSport World Championships
  3. Niagara Falls Barrelman Bike/Run.

Keeping these three at the forefront of my training, I’ve added “B races” where I could practice “the essentials” (i.e. pacing, transition, and nutrition) to prepare for my A races.

On August 12/13, MultiSport Canada held the 4th race of its series in Bracebridge, Ontario. This was also the weekend of the “Du-The-Double” Duathlon Challenge, and the international distance duathlon qualification race for the 2018 ITU MultiSport World Championships in Denmark. Needless to say, it was a pretty significant race weekend. As tempting as it was for me to race both days with guns blazing (sprint distance on Saturday and international distance on Sunday), my goal was easily not to “go hard or go home”.

The field was decorated with the fastest duathletes in Ontario and it was really hard not to push myself outside of my boundaries. Having cycled from Toronto to Montréal (bikerally.org) the weekend before and doing a back-to-back duathlon race for the first time, I knew that I was going to treat my races this weekend to “tune up” for my upcoming A race in Penticton, which is happening in just a weeks time.

Two races in one weekend; definitely a new challenge for me, but this determined duathlete is ready to go out there, stay focused, and just have fun.


Uplifting, from start to finish

We had arrived in Bracebridge on the Friday and stayed there for the weekend. As Jordan, Trevor, and I were taking our bikes into our hotel, we bumped into two friendly ladies who started asking us about our bikes. We learned that mother and daughter, Debbie and Samantha, were also staying that weekend in Bracebridge to compete in their first triathlon race on Saturday with MultiSport Canada’s Give-It-A-Tri. We would see them again the next day for their big debut!

I participated in the sprint duathlon on Saturday with the intention of practicing my T1 and T2. After chatting with fellow MultiSport Ambassador, Matt Straatman, and saying hello to Rob at the BLADE Carbon Wheels tent, I proceeded to the start line. I had a solid 5km run at 3:53/km and a very smooth transition into the bike, where I biked comfortably at 30.29kph (new bike, new shoes, new race F2C nutrition!). After a very graceful flying dismount (proud moment!), I ran into T2 with a nagging feeling in my calves… both were starting to seize! It took the duration of the second run at 4:25/km to shake off the feeling and the race was over before I could rev up my engine again. I finished 10th OA, and 3rd in M20-29.

After my race, I found Sharon (the amazing volunteer coordinator!) to volunteer for the rest of the day. The skies opened up and it started to pour intermittently as the Give-It-A-Tri athletes were starting their race. All I could think about was how much harder we would need to cheer for the triathletes to brighten up their race experience! I walked up to the bike mount line (Jordan and Trevor also volunteered with me!) where I took my post with the Triathlon Ontario Official to ensure athletes mounted their bikes past the mount line.

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Athletes mount just past the line!

It was incredible to see so many first time triathletes across all age groups participating in this weekend’s Give-It-A-Tri. Many were smiling and all were appreciative of the support the volunteers were providing throughout the race. We saw both Samantha and Debbie prior to the race start and they seemed more excited than nervous for their first race! Samantha mounted her bike with a smiling face and Debbie a few minutes after. Both seemed to be having the time of their lives! After seeing them off on the bike, I ran to the finisher’s chute to provide water to all the finishers and congratulate them all for a great race!

Volunteering for the Give-It-A-Tri event quickly became the highlight of my weekend!

I had the opportunity to catch up with Samantha a few days after her race to ask about her experience.


Debbie [L] and Samantha [R]. They were incredible this weekend!

[D] What was your main reason for participating in the MultiSport Canada Triathlon Series’ Give-It-A-Tri this weekend in Bracebridge?

[S] I love finding new ways to get active outdoors and challenging my fitness. This event was an opportunity for my Mom and myself to do just that, while also enjoying ourselves in Bracebridge for the weekend.

[D] What did you enjoy the most about racing with MultiSport Canada?

[S] We loved the venue and the people! We got to see how beautiful Bracebridge is, and we felt comfortable with the terrain for our first race. The welcoming environment of people made our first race feel like we belonged from the start. We had met three very friendly participants of MultiSport Canada the night before the event, who were staying at our hotel. They helped us decide about wearing our wetsuits, gave us tips and tricks before the race and overall made us feel very welcome to the triathlon community. During the race they stayed onsite cheering on the participants and all three of their smiles truly made us feel supported and confident through our first triathlon experience. We met numerous other MultiSport employees and athletes who were all full of advice before the race, encouragement during the race, and long conversations to follow. Overall, the race day was an uplifting event start to finish.

[D] It must have been very cool to race your first triathlon together with your mom! Share some of the main highlights from both your races. Did you learn anything new about yourselves this weekend?

[S] After finishing my own race I joined my Mom to help her through her running portion. Being able to run side-by-side through the finish-line together with both of us smiling ear-to-ear was an amazing feeling. We learnt that we are able to push ourselves on our own to find our edge during the race. However, we also can push each other to succeed.


[D] What was your overall impression of the race experience with MultiSport Canada Triathlon Series?

[S] Overall, we absolutely loved the experience!!!! Both my Mom and I left the event in such a positive mood. The event was extremely organized, all of the staff/volunteers were helpful and friendly. Oh, and my mom is obsessed with her MultiSport Canada hat… Hahahah, she hadn’t taken it off after the race until about 10pm that night 🙂

I couldn’t have said it better myself! Samantha’s words truly capture what it’s like to race with MultiSport Canada. It was truly inspiring to witness their race experience from beginning to end, and to see both of them beaming with pride after their race. I can’t help but return to the question of “why do we keep doing this?” that I had posted in the beginning of my post. It’s because no matter what your reason is for racing, you will always find someone out there whose reasons are far greater than yours.


pictures courtesy of Samantha.

With a brand new perspective


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Trevor, Kirill, me and Jordan

The next day, the three of us returned to the race site with a new friend. Kirill had driven all the way from Toronto to see us race! This would be my second race of the weekend and Jordan and Trevor’s time to shine in the olympic distance triathlon. It was a beautiful, sunny day and all the excitement from Saturday’s events has evidently carried over. It was time for me to practice my nutrition in the international distance duathlon event. F2C nutrition has given me a refreshing way to approach race day nutrition and I am officially in love with their products.


Regardless of all the typical race day logistics that were going through my head, I still remember Samantha and Debbie’s race experiences. They reminded me of the positive impact encouragement can make in someone else’s race. I wish I could give you the run down of the specifics from my race but at that point, while I was racing, none of the specifics mattered to me anymore. I made it my goal to cheer on my fellow athletes during my race and the race was over before I knew it! I surprised myself upon realizing that I finished 14th OA, and 2nd in M20-29.

I proceeded to volunteer both in transition and finisher’s chute with my fellow ambassadors, Daniel Clarke and Ryan Dockman, handing out water and medals to the finishers. I’ve never had so much fun racing and volunteering at any race. It was remarkable to see first hand what great sportsmanship and camaraderie can do and how they can empower athletes to achieve their goals.


As I recover from this weekend and prepare for my race in Penticton, I will take with me the lessons I learned this weekend in Bracebridge. I hope that everyone reading my post will consider signing up for the Toronto Island Race, in support of SickKids, this coming weekend with MultiSport Canada Triathlon Series, either as an athlete or volunteer (or both!), and experience for yourself the fun, safe, and the incredibly supportive atmosphere that John Salt and the MultiSport Canada team provide at every race.

Toronto Island Women’s Triathlon, August 19

Toronto Island Triathlon/Duathlon, August 20

Thank you for sharing my race experiences with me and until next time!

Next stop: 2017 ITU MultiSport World Championships, Penticton, BC.


race pictures courtesy of Jordan and Kirill.

#MSCGravenhurst: A Different Kind of Race Report

Truly a humbling experience

Saturday, July 15. My alarm clock went off at exactly 3:00 am and I got out of bed to the smell of coffee and breakfast. Jordan, my partner, had already started his early morning race day routine and as usual, I was second out of bed.

This race morning was a little different from the typical. At this ‘ungodly’ hour, instead of  checking our transition bags, reviewing our race prep list, and doing last minute bike checks, we were packing cold brew iced coffee in our traveller mugs, stuffing Clif Bars into our designated ‘spectator bag’, and leaving our bikes in our condo.

MultiSport Canada Triathlon Series hosted its second race of the season in Gravenhurst, Ontario this past weekend. Exactly a year ago, I participated in this same race to qualify for the ITU Multisport World Championships in Penticton, B.C. Though this time, we were on our way as volunteers. We were looking forward to experiencing a race outside of the athlete’s perspective since this would be our first time volunteering at a race.

Being an age group athlete living in downtown Toronto has its challenges.

Race venues usually require quite a bit of travel for us. We typically spend between 5-6 hours on average of combined travel time, not accounting for traffic, to get to and from a race site. In addition, we don’t own a car which means we have to get a rental every time we need to drive to a race located outside of the city. As an age group athlete, I also have a full time job that requires me to work on weekends. Considering these variables, my race involvement is usually pretty limited to just one of the two race weekend days.

Despite these challenges, we make it known that this sport is our passion. Our commitment to its promotion and helping it grow far outweighs any of our limitations.

Every time we make it out to a race, whether as athletes or spectators, we make the experience count and as first time volunteers, we were ready to make this one count!


We rolled into Gravenhurst just before 6 am (how odd it was to be one of the first in the race site… we even beat SportStats there despite our GPS accidentally re-routing us to a private road!). We made our way over to the volunteer’s tent where we had the pleasure of meeting Sharon, our lovely volunteer coordinator.

After receiving our shirts (finally got my MSC Ambassador Shirt! Yes!), we took our post at the transition entrance where we handed out transition wristbands and assisted athletes in finding their bib numbers.

I LOVED every second of it because not only did we get to meet and talk to many athletes, we also had the priviledge of being what we called the ‘welcoming committee’! With how the race site was organized, we got to create the first impression for the athletes as they entered the race site. After a few trial and error, Jordan and I figured out that the best game plan was for him to stand further out by the entrance and hand out wristbands while directing them into the transition zone, and for me to be by the course maps and bib numbers to help athletes.


I have to thank my fellow MultiSport Ambassador athletes, Daniel Clarke, Darren Cooney, and Spencer Summerfield, who all took the time to stop by for a quick pre-race conversation keeping me company. As the race start drew closer, Jordan and I got separated and he was positioned on the other side of transition.

I resumed my post until the race start.

As the triathletes made their way to the water, I made sure to wish everyone good luck, to enjoy, and to have a great race day!

There were many looks of nervousness, excitement, fierceness and intensity but they all had one thing in common: they were all smiling. It was so cool to just be able to observe everyone’s pre-race routines and reactions. As an athlete who finds comfort in being in my own head before every race, I oftentimes forget that people race for many reasons; whether it’s to be competitive or to take on a new challenge, to race with friends and loved ones, or to just go out there and have lots of fun!

Regardless of the reason, MultiSport Canada creates the perfect environment for all athletes to achieve their race goals.


Shortly after the race start, we ran back to our car and made our way to the 3 km aid station, where we spent the remainder of our day.

Upon finding out that we were the only two volunteers stationed there, we were a bit concerned with how we were going to simultaneously fill water and F2C electrolytes on both sides of the run course, while trying to hand them out to hundreds of athletes coming from both directions. It seemed like an impossible mission but we were determined. Many thanks to our site supervisor who continuously checked in on us while giving us race updates.

After a few minutes of frantically covering every space of the table with cups full of water and F2C, we anxiously waited for the athletes’ arrival.


From a distance we saw the lead group of duathletes (Matt Straatman and Charles Bedley) swiftly making their way towards us. Not having previously done this, Jordan and I grabbed water with one hand and F2C in the other. We quickly learned that this is not the best way to do it as we could see many confused looks while we excitedly yelled at athletes “water in the white and F2C in the other!”

We immediately changed our approach and I ended up handing out water while Jordan owned the F2C (even telling athletes that it’s neither Gatorade or Heed.. way to promote the MultiSport Canada Series Official Nutrition Partner!). Duathletes started coming from both directions of the course but thankfully they were separated far enough from one another for us to manage both tables without facing any problems.

As the final duathlete made his way through our aid station, we knew that we have the duration of the bike course to figure out another strategy for the triathletes. With the sun burning through the clouds and the heat intensifying, the bugs started to become vicious.  We worked to replenish all the cups with water and F2C, and cleaned up all the empty cups off the road, while dealing with the heat and bugs. Good thing we had company from our paramedics on their bikes!

At this point, the 10 am mark was approaching and we anticipated the lead triathletes to start arriving. Lo and behold, we saw Daniel Clarke with Jessie the Elf not too far behind him. We assumed our position and did our thing while cheering on the lead triathletes.

A few moments later and more triathletes started passing by, grabbing a lot more water than we had anticipated. As we scrambled to fill more water and electrolytes, the lifeguards pulled in and helped us work the opposite aid station! We were so delighted to finally have a full team of four!! Together, we brought the enthusiasm to a whole new level, cheering on all the athletes as they passed us.

The next two hours flew by and it was time we wait for the arrival of the final triathletes. As we picked up the empty cups and tidied our area, it was already passed 1 pm. Tired and cooked from the sun but still with big smiles and high spirits, it was time for Jordan and I, along with our trio of lifeguards, to drive back to the finish line. We arrived back to home base where we were welcomed back by Sharon. I had the opportunity to stop by the Blade Carbon Wheels tent to say hello to Rob, and to speak with Garvin, a fellow duathlete who had just competed in the duathlon. Then we saw the tail end of the awards ceremony and noticed that there were significantly less athletes remaining on site. I thought to myself, “that was much harder than racing!”

These are the lessons I learned that day:

  1. Volunteers are the unspoken heroes of races. They work hard to help create the safe and fun experience for the athletes, and they ensure that all athletes are supported during their race. A million thanks to everyone who took the time to express their gratitude for the volunteers’ hard work.
  2. MultiSport Canada cares for their volunteers as much as they care for their athletes.  I was impressed by the level of support we received throughout the day; from providing us with bug spray and refreshments to keeping us company at our aid station, we felt supported every step of the way.
  3. We need more volunteers. After going through this experience, I believe that every athlete should volunteer at least once during their race season. It’s a very cool opportunity to experience the race from this angle and it really helps develop a deeper appreciation for what goes on behind the scenes. It truly is a great way to give back to the triathlon and duathlon community and to continue its legacy.

Check out http://www.multisportcanada.com/volunteer/  to learn more about volunteering with MultiSport Canada.

Jordan and I returned to our car for the long drive back home. We both agreed that this experience was worth it and we certainly felt proud of what we have accomplished that day. Thank you to John Salt and the MultiSport Canada team for always going above and beyond in organizing this fantastic race series.



Until next time!








#MSCWelland: Race Report

Lights, Camera, ACTION!

This weekend (June 24/25) was MultiSport Canada’s Season Opener presented by Sketchers Performance in the beautiful city of Welland. A few days ago, I published in my pre-race report how excited I was about racing in the Rose City. I did a bit of research prior to the race and learned that Welland is not only a city rich with history going back as early as 1788, but is also home to the finest rose gardens in the Niagara Region thereby earning its name of Rose City. Naturally, this fun fact stuck with me on my way to the race venue and throughout my racing experience on Saturday.

If there is one word I can use to describe the venue, I would use the word STUNNING. The gorgeous Welland International Flatwater Centre, with the sunlight kissing its surface was the first thing I saw as I rolled into the site.


The atmosphere was calm at 7am with the venue slowly filling up with athletes. It was a very easy and straightforward process navigating through the registration process and setting up my transition zone. It’s always nice to have a seamless, stress-free start to the race and we have the MultiSport Canada team and their amazing group of volunteers to thank for creating such a friendly and welcoming environment for all participants.

The registration area was well-marked and easy to follow, and the transition zone was well-organized and excellently set up. The venue was also spectator-friendly and the set up definitely made it easy for friends and family to cheer on their athletes throughout the race. It was incredible to see the venue packed with families and parents who brought their children and hopefully future MultiSport athletes, to participate in all the fun. F2C Nutrition had a tent set up for spectators to engage and create posters to cheer on their athletes.


My small but mighty team of spectators!

This race was the PERFECT season opener.

I raced in the Sprint Duathlon event on Saturday, June 24. The athlete turnout was impressive with almost 100 duathletes participating in my event! It was fantastic to see so many first time duathletes of all ages come out and race that day as well.

The course was fast, flat, and friendly. The race started off by the transition zone with a simple out and back format along the water (it was cool to see the triathletes swimming at the same time) — great set up for beginner athletes!

The first run was over before I knew it! Finishing the 2.5 km in 9:29, I hit a personal best right away! The spectators had created an electrifying energy as they cheered on every athlete in the run course. They provided great encouragement for all athletes and made the run so much fun!

The positive experience carried throughout the 20km bike course. The roads were well-marked and I was not concerned at all about finding my way on the bike. It also helped that the course maps were made accessible on the website and on-site prior to the start of the race. The bike course lived up to its reputation of being flat and fast as I achieved another personal best on the bike course. I have to especially thank the volunteers and the police officers on the bike course for keeping the roads safe for all athletes.

The last run was two loops on the same course as the first one; familiar course to wrap up a great day of racing! Once again, the volunteers were impressive at the aid stations with not only handing out water and nutrition but also cheering on all the athletes. I had a smile on my face for the duration of the second run. It was a day of PB’s for many athletes and I owe it all to the perfect execution by the MultiSport Canada Team. Thank you to all the volunteers, John Salt and Steve Fleck, and the team of MultiSport ambassadors for a spectacular season opener!

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Race with us!

Free race photos by Zoomphotoinc are available after the race and race results are posted on SportStats shortly after the event.

There are plenty of opportunities to get involved not only as an athlete but also as a volunteer. MultiSport Canada does a tremendous job in ensuring that the races are executed in an organized, fun, comfortable, and safe manner. Volunteers are essential in making this happen. Click the link below to see the list of volunteer opportunities:


I mentioned in my pre-race report that the energy is guaranteed to be electrifying in Welland and it sure was!

Great sportsmanship, a community of passionate athletes and volunteers, and a fun multisport race series; these sum up what it’s like to race with MultiSport Canada. Check out their website at http://www.multisportcanada.com to see how you can get involved!


1st AG (M20-29); 10 OA

#MSCWelland: Pre-Race Report

“Where Rails and Water Meet”: The Rose City

While perusing the MultiSport Canada website last season, I found out that Welland is one of their race venues. To my dismay, I was a little behind with planning my race calendar and totally missed this race! Since then I’ve been looking forward to racing in this historic city and now that it’s only a few days away, I’m beyond excited that I finally get to compete in this spectacular venue!

The first time I visited this venue was last September when I spectated the Niagara Barrelman 70.3 distance. The swim took place in the stunning Welland International Flatwater Centre, a facility built in 2013 to host the Toronto Pan Am Canoekayak Sprint Events. This is also where triathletes will be swimming 750 m (sprint triathlon) or 2 km (long course triathlon) this weekend.

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Welland International Flatwater Centre, Niagara Barrelman 70.3

I was curious as to how the City of Welland adopted the name “The Rose City” so I did a bit of research on the city website and this is what I found out:

“…the city of Welland is the outgrowth of a settlement which commenced about the year 1788, when a scattering of farms between what we now know as Quaker Road and South Pelham Street, along the Welland River came to be.

In 1829, when a wooden aqueduct was built to carry the Welland Canal over the Welland River, a true urban presence of settlement came to be around that location. The settlement was called Aqueduct or The Aqueduct.. The settlement was incorporated as the Village of Welland on July 24, 1858.  Incorporation as a town took place on January 1, 1878, and as a City on July 1, 1917.

Welland is located in the heart of the Niagara District..  There are 462.61 acres of fine parks and one of the finest Rose Gardens in the Province.  This garden with others privately-owned, has earned for Welland the appellation of “Rose City” a title officially confirmed by resolution of City Council on October 18, 1921.

In 1991 Council adopted Rose #K0802647 as Welland’s Official Rose. The colour variation of yellow, red and orange was deemed appropriate by the selection committee as it represented Welland’s blend of cultures.”


Taking the time to research the city’s history has furthered my appreciation for what this beautiful city has to offer, and I’m certainly going to have a richer and more meaningful racing experience on Saturday.

Race With Us!

There is literally an event for everyone in this venue. If you’re still on the fence about participating in the MultiSport Canada’s season opener, i’s not too late to register. Whether you’re new to the sport or an experienced athlete, you can choose to participate in the following events:


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Check out the MultiSport Canada website for more information.

There are also plenty of opportunities to get involved as a volunteer. MultiSport Canada does a tremendous job in ensuring that the races are executed in an organized, fun, comfortable, and safe manner. Volunteers are essential in making this happen. Click the link below to see the list of volunteer opportunities:


The energy is guaranteed to be electrifying in Welland and expect to witness great sportsmanship and camaraderie! Meet a community of passionate athletes and volunteers, and partake in all the fun that the sport of triathlon/duathlon has to offer.

I will be at the venue before and after my race, along with my group of amazing MultiSport Canada Ambassador Team, to share our experiences with the sport.

Hope to see you there!


09.11.16: Georgina Sprint Duathlon

The day started very cold and windy.

From the moment we saw the white caps on the water, we knew that the swim would be cancelled. This is the second time that I have done this race and both times it ended up being a duathlon day for all! 😊

georgina_run.jpgNot long after we arrived, the sun came out and the sky cleared. It warmed up and the conditions became significantly more favourable for a race. I had little expectations before the race as I spent the past three weeks recovering from my injuries from the Toronto Island Race. My goal was simply not to crash on the bike… not for a third time this season.

The first 5km felt great! Running by the water and feeling the light breeze on my face carried me at 3:55 min/km. I could see three athletes ahead of me but my plan of attack is usually on the second run.

I was one of the first athletes into transition. I’ve always had the fear of ‘losing my bike’ in the transition zone and for some reason, this fear has become a reality for the second year in a row on this race. Imagine trying to find your car in a full IKEA parking lot! My goal was not to panic as I started to see more and more athletes enter transition. I looked around for almost a full minute until I finally found it.

The bike course was a 20km loop. Cross winds on the first 10 and headwind on the way back. I didn’t crash, thankfully, but I was careful since every bump on the road hurt my strained wrists. A 32.7 kph was good enough to keep me in the top 10.

I had already lost my previous placing and it was time for me to go ‘flat-line-hard’ on the last 2.5km. I counted ‘one, two, three..’ as I passed athletes one by one. 8 minutes later, I crossed the finish line.

Well, I ended up surprising myself with a first img_3702place finish in my age group and third overall. What a nice way to end the duathlon season of 2016!

A million thanks to MultiSport Canada Series, Recharge with Milk and all the volunteers for the top-notch race series, Steve Fleck for the amazing job that he does on every race, ZoomPhotoInc and SportStats for the action shots and official timing.

Last but not least, thank you to GNC Canada and CrossFuel PurePerformance for helping me achieve my fitness goals.


2016-09-11 | 2016 MultiSport Georgina Triathlon

Until next race season!

all images are courtesy of Zoom Photo Inc.

08.21.16: Toronto Island Sprint Duathlon

A year ago, I raced my very first sprint duathlon at the MultiSport Toronto Island Sprint Duathlon.

I was excited that I finally get to do a race that I’ve done before and I knew exactly what to expect heading into it. Last year, I placed 1st in my age group and I was ready to defend my title this year. This time, my family decided to spectate for the very first time. Hoping to impress them with a great performance, I put my game face on. It started off to be a rainy and cold day but the conditions progressively got better as the start of the race drew closer.

A running coach once said to me to always expect the unexpected. I’ve trained well, fuelled properly, and strategized my race but alas, the unexpected did happen. The gun went off as I ran with the front pack, pacing at 3:43 for my 5km. I had a quick transition and I could see my mom jumping and cheering from a distance. I was having a fantastic race.

Starting off at 38kph on the bike, my confidence was soaring. Then lo and behold, everything sort of fell apart on the bike course. Just before the 10km mark on the bike, I heard a steady hissing sound and at that moment, I knew that I had gotten a flat on my front wheel. I knew that at 36 kph that I could make it back to the transition zone without changing my tire.

Little did I know, the morning rain had left the road slippery and around the 15km turn, my Cannondale slid and I (once again for a 2nd race in a row ☹️) crashed my bike. With a strained wrist, a few bruises, deep cuts and abrasions, I finished the bike (thankfully!) with a flat tire and a deflated but still determined spirit. The look of exhilaration from my parents quickly turned to concern when I rolled into transition looking pretty banged up.

The last run hurt a lot even with adrenaline fuelling my body. “Just finish” was the phrase I was repeating over and over again in my head. I looked pretty kick-ass crossing the finish line with a bloody face. Meds quickly rushed to my aid and so did my fellow duathletes as they saw me at the finish line.

I knew for sure that I would have placed 1st in my age group and definitely in the top 5 men had it not been for the crash. Sure, I was disappointed but despite the setback, I still had a strong finish, placing 4/14 in M20-29 and 6/114 overall. I sure gave my family one race to remember.


Lesson-learned: Always keep the rubber side down.

08.07.16: Bracebridge International Distance Duathlon

What a day!

A week after riding my bike from Toronto to Montréal, I knew that I was going to have to let genetics take control and ‘just race’ this one. Before the race at transition, I bumped into a fellow duathlete Mark Cullen and he reassured me that the run course was flat (and thankfully it was!). It was exactly what I needed to hear before the start to calm down my nerves!


I ran the 10km quite comfortably at 4:14 min/km, and I finished just over 42min. I could still feel the soreness from my legs and it took some restraint to conserve my energy for the remainder of the race. Heading out of T1, I was a bit concerned. The 42km bike was quite interesting. Despite it being a hilly course, I was averaging a decent 35kph until the 20km mark when another athlete had made an illegal pass on me. As a result, I crashed my bike for the first time while racing 😥. A little shaken up, I lost my momentum and I couldn’t stay focused. I finished the bike with an average pace of 30.2kph.

I gave the last 5km run my best effort while trying to fight off leg cramps at 4:46 min/km. Pretty good run nonetheless. My legs were done.

It was so awesome having a few friends and family there to keep the hype up. Overall, I placed 9th and 3rd in my age group. I feel so lucky to have gotten the results that I did and I’m so going to train properly for my next race!


07.16.16: Gravenhurst International Distance Duathlon

It was just moments after we had gotten home, mid-martinis, celebrating another successful race weekend at the Belwood Conservation Triathlon and Duathlon Races, when a crazy thought crossed my mind.

What they say about ‘post-race high’ is true. This is the feeling of euphoria after finishing a race, leading one to believe that they can accomplish absolutely anything. I’m quite familiar with this feeling as it was what led me to sign up for my first marathon a few years ago. I trained for months in preparation for this season… but with the intention of racing sprint distances (2.5k-20k-5k).

In exactly a weeks time, MultiSport Canada would be hosting the Ontario Provincial Triathlon and Duathlon Championships in Gravenhurst, Ontario. This race also happened to be the 2017 International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships Qualifier Race in Penticton, BC. If I register, I would have to race my very first Standard Distance Duathlon (10k-40k-5k). Untrained for this distance, and with less than a week to recover from the Belwood race, it seemed unwise to register for Gravenhurst. There definitely wasn’t enough time to recover and taper for a race twice the distance that my body was trained for.

So naturally, I signed up!

A week later, we were on our way to Gravenhurst. We arrived at the venue two hours later. With feelings of excitement, mixed with nerves and a hint of regret, I got out of the car and set up the bike trainer to do a short warmup. Before I knew it, I found myself in a sea of athletes at the race start. Then, the gun went off.

10k run, 40k bike, 5k run: my plan was simple. I’ve ran many 10k’s and my goal was to achieve a negative split (run the second 5k faster than the first). Through the rolling hills, I ran calmly with hawk-like focus. It wasn’t until the turnaround when I realized that I was just behind the lead group of athletes. Confidence boost = check! Running into transition, I saw my friends and I yelled ‘negative split!’ with a big smile on my face. At 4:00 min/km, I was having a good race.2016-07-16 | 2016 MultiSport Gravenhurst Triathlon (Saturday)

My game plan for the bike was to pedal comfortably. I knew that it would be the hilliest course I’ve ever raced on and I would have to fuel properly to prevent bonking. I always attack on the third run and I wanted to ensure that I had enough fight for my last 5k. I counted one kilometre at a time, hydrated every 10 minutes, and maintained 95-100rpm for the duration of the bike. I wasn’t nearly going fast enough at 29.7kph to keep my placing and undoubtedly I’ve fallen behind due to my calves painfully seizing at the 30k mark. The last 5k of the bike felt like an eternity. I sped up my cadence to spin out my cramps and re-focus for the last run. I rolled into transition feeling defeated.

I ran out of transition for the last haul. My plan of attack was to pace a 4:15 and finish strong. I ran a little slower at 4:22 but when I crossed the finish line, I felt accomplished and proud.  Despite any hopes of qualifying for Penticton disappearing into thin air, I took my wins. I completed my first Standard Distance Duathlon and I competed with the best and the most talented athletes that I’ve seen. Although I didn’t finish on the podium, the post-race high sure was back.


I learned two conflicting lessons that day. 1) training 101: it is not wise to put your body through something that it isn’t ready to do, and 2) don’t be afraid to take risks and believe in your capabilities. My body wasn’t ready for this distance but I did it anyway. The only way that I could survive this race was to condition my mind to believe that I can push my body beyond its limits.

There was a third lesson: don’t lose hope so quickly for what’s meant to happen, will happen.

I opened my email a week later… I am going to Penticton after all.



all race photos courtesy of ZoomPhotoInc.