About Me

About Me

Va Nou Af | From Now On!

It Only Took 27 Years

aspiration [as-puh-rey-shuh n]
  1. a strong desire, longing, or aim; ambition
  2. a goal or objective that is strongly desired
It all started when I was 13 and we volunteered to man an aid station for the inaugural St. Croix Ironman in 1988. We stood on the corner and handed out sponges and water bottles to the athletes. Little did I know at the time how that very moment, that singular experience at 13 years old would shape, form and turn me into the man that I am today.
Same corner I stood on as a 13 year old handing out sponges and water bottles.
My very first triathlon shortly after.

I did not understand it at the time, but I very vividly remember being in awe at the athletes. Not at what they were doing, but their eyes. At 13 I did not understand it, but I could see it. I could see something in their eyes.

What I saw in their eyes was the will to be in the moment, the drive to push yourself, the ability to not break in the moment, but to be in the moment and find ways to get you through the now. It was a determination and will that can only come from being uncomfortable, uncertain but having trust. Trust in your own ability to take you to the edge and then some.

View of Christiansted and it's Harbor as seen from Hotel on the Key where we stayed.

The ability to know what your limits are both physically and mentally. Because when the body gives up physically, the heart is what takes over and at that point you’re just along for the ride. That was the look I saw in their eyes, that was the moment when I told myself that I am going to do this!

Well, 27 years later I can finally say… I did it and it was surreal. The last two miles as we ran though town past my dad’s office, my old barber shop, my school, my library, my home – it all hit me at once.

This wasn’t just my journey, this was our journey. One that involved all the individuals that have been an influence in my life from my school teachers to my family and everyone in between.

Running down King Street to the finish. This was by far the worst race ever but by far the best experience.
Salvador's Barber Shop | The kind of place that you learn so much from if you just sit and listen.
My family! 20 years later all grown up and with our own little offspring.

A few that I would like to personally thank are Duff Tyler, for being the constant in my life when there was none. For giving me the self assurance that anything was and is possible despite what is thrown at you. For my team mates John, Jason “Woody” , Jason, Jesse, Tim, Dave, Kathy, Kerry, Andrea, Allison, Evelyn, Jill, Karina, Karoline, Alisa, Beth, Mary, and Andrea, who always made you smile when Mr. Black was getting on your last nerve. But more importantly they were always there for you at all cost no questions asked. I love you guys and cannot thank you enough for all that you did and have done for me. I am proud to call you my family.

I also would like to thank Norman who was an unexpected surprise in this journey. For whom I am grateful that I was able to share this moment and experience with. Brother you have no idea what you did for me and I simply do not have the words to articulate what I am feeling or know how to express my gratitude. Just know that I will forever be grateful and thankful for the moment and the “SWOOSH”

Cramer’s Park Beach on the north shore of St. Croix’s East End, near Point Udall.
Norm conquering his fears and making it look easy. I am proud of you brother.

But most importantly to my loving wife Lauren for putting up with my nonsense and supporting my goals and dreams. I love you to the moon and back beautiful. You’re my rock and my foundation and I thank God every day for bring you into my every day.

My Beautiful Wife - Waiting on me again!
You're the smile to my face and the beat to my heart.

The race was definitely one for the books. From the Flash flood warnings to the tropical storm and everything in between.

All in all it was a great experience from getting stung by jellyfish 15 minutes into the swim, to experiencing a flat 5 miles into the race. Of which I would consider us fortunate, since I lost count after the 20th person I saw on the side of the road repairing a flat. I experienced more bottle ejections to last anyone a lifetime and I finally got to pee myself during a race after blindly going throw sections of road I wasn’t sure what was under my wheel or feet!

In all honesty, I would do it all over again and I would not have had it any other way. It gave me the opportunity to really enjoy the race for what it was and not what it is! Because at the end of the day it is what you make of the situation that dictates the outcome.

Yup, that little Island is right under all that CRAP!

I would like to take a second and also Thank Maverick Multisport. The world class team and athletes that Chris has assembled from the Pros to the Age Groupers has been a long time coming. It is refreshing to see that the sport as a whole is heading in a positive direction.

After a three year hiatus from racing and almost giving up. Maverick was a BIG influence and motivator in getting me spooled up and ready to roll in a few months. Through the inspiring words of Sarah Cameto – Professional Triathlete to the positive feedback from Jake Rhyner to the amazing Wassner Twins and their story of overcoming adversity. Maverick fueled my passion and desire to Soldier On!

Thank you Chris and your entire team for truly embracing what the sport is and raising the bar to a new level and in my opinion the right direction for the people by the people. Forever a Maverick Ambassador!

Manny your average age grouper