This Sunday I will have the honor of racing the Landsharks Triathlon in tandem with three amazing children. These kids and their families have refused to let disabilities keep them from living life to the fullest. Through the tireless work of the therapists at The Kids Center, these children have made great strides in their physical, social and mental abilities. I now get the privilege of helping them experience what it’s like to race as part of a triathlon!
Let’s meet the athletes!
Derek will be joining me on the 1500 meter (0.93 mile) swim portion of the race. His parents let him decide which discipline he wanted to participate in and he chose the swim. So I will pull Derek behind me in a raft as I swim the course. We had a practice run the other day and the smile on Derek’s face was priceless! Here is some more information about Derek:
- He is 8-1/2 years old (if you have children, you know how important it is to add that “1/2”!)
- He is learning to eat with a swivel spoon (has a mechanism to keep the spoon level)
- He is making choices on his communications device (he used this to communicate that he wanted to do the swim)
- He is now walking independently
- He loves to play with pretend tools and he loves to tell jokes on his device
Levi will be my partner on the 40K (24.8 mile) bike portion of the race. Levi and his mom were the first people that I contacted and their enthusiasm for this race is contagious! I can’t wait to pull Levi around on the beautiful scenic roads! Here is some more information about Levi:
- He is 4-1/2 years old
- In therapy he is working on walking and using his right hand
- Levi wants to be a doctor just like Dr. Mutchnick (Pediatric Neurosurgeon)
- He is working on taking his shirt off by himself and he loves the sensory gym at the Kids Center
- Levi loves to play tricks on people (hopefully I won’t be a target come Sunday!)
Zander will help push me through 10K (6.2 mile) run portion of the race. Zander and Levi met in therapy and are now good buddies. Zander is younger than the other kids, but it sounds like he has lots of experience in a jogging stroller, so we should have a good time! Here is some other information in Zander:
- He is 2-1/2 years old
- He has two pets – Teddy and Dazie
- According to his therapist, Zander is the happiest, determined and most charming little boy. He never fusses with his therapist.
- He is learning to walk in his gait-trainer
I can’t wait to get other there with these guys. It’s going to be an exciting day!
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