Winging it

© AdobeStock

In 1978, a number of elite athletes were debating who were more fit: swimmers, bikers or runners. To settle the dispute, they decided to stitch the three disciplines into an uber-triathlon to see who would win. Eleven hours, 15 minutes and 58 seconds later, the first Ironman crossed the finish line.


The birth of the Thalontri this summer was a bit less auspicious. With the Mont-Tremblant Ironman series cancelled again this year, it was time to pivot. There were no elite athletes debating. Random swim, bike and run distances were pulled from thin air. The order of the disciplines was changed (hence the mixed-up event name).

My friend Charles and I plotted out a Thalontri race plan. We would begin our day on the bikes, and ride from our respective homes to Montebello. Afterwards, we’d get in a swim and a run.

A new twist

Our friends Jacynthe and Wendy agreed to serve as support crew. Special needs bags were prepped with extra water, bananas, a bit of pickle juice and a bandage or two. Coffee at the makeshift aid station in Namur was most welcome. The bike ride to Montebello was not without its challenges. There are monster hills to climb, some wretched roads and no shoulders.

However, homemade signs of support along the way kept both Charles and me smiling. We made up the rules as we went. We did two swim segments instead of one. We stretched the event over three days. We took naps; we had lunch. Regardless of the modified distances (and rules), we pushed ourselves.

Most importantly, we had fun. Events get cancelled. Plans get changed. Pivot and make the best of it. Mount the podium this season in your own homemade event. It’s certain to be a personal best.


More from this author by clicking on her photo below.

Cathy Bergman


Cathy Bergman58 Posts

Cathy Bergman est devenue athlète de façon inopinée à un âge relativement avancé. Elle nous montre qu’il n'est jamais trop tard pour retrouver la santé et la forme. Cathy Bergman is an accidental athlete who found health and fitness late in life. She shows us that is never too late to get healthy and fit.

Ask yourself why

Crazy delicious

Opportunity knocks

The power of community


Leave a Comment


Welcome! Login in to your account

Remember me Lost your password?

Lost Password