Pre-Ironman Words of Encouragement from Mom

Sep 03

Pre-Ironman Words of Encouragement from Mom

On Sunday I completed my first Ironman. I had been training for the race for the past several months and recently conquered the distance for the first time. A couple days before the race, I called my mom to remind her of what I’d be doing all day Sunday since she was too busy with her peppers to fly out and cheer me on. The call went about how you’d expect.

Me: “My big race is on Sunday.”

Mom: “Oh-kayyyy honey. I tell Kurt [my stepdad] about you race and he think it’s cool.”

Me: “Really? What’d he say?”

Mom: “He say, ‘That’s cool.”

Me: “Oh…do you remember what the race is?”

Mom: “…no.”

So Mom’s telling my stepdad about my “big race,” but she has no idea what the race entails. At least she sort of remembered that I was even doing a race. Baby steps.

Me: “It’s a triathlon. Do you remember what a triathlon is?”

Mom: No.”

Me: Silence.

Mom, indignantly: “Mommy old!” Yes, that was her excuse.

Me: “A triathlon is a race where you swim, then bike, then run. I’m doing an Ironman, so I’m going to swim 2.4 miles…”

Mom: Silence.

Me: “…then bike 112 miles…”

Mom: “Whaaaaa?”

Me: “…and then run 26.2 miles.”

Mom: “Oh my gahhh, you gonna DIE.”

Me, laughing: “I’m not going to die, Mom. I’ll be fine.”

Mom: “They have doctors there?”

Me: “Yeah, there are lots of doctors and volunteers. It’s very well organized.”

Mom, unconvinced: “You gonna die.”

Me: “I am not! I’ve been training all year for this. It’s gotten me in really good shape and it’s good exercise.”

Mom: “Is too much exercise! You do too much. Do other things.”

Me: “I have been doing other things…I’ve been swimming, biking, and running.”

Mom: “What you get for doing race? You get a prize?”

Me: “Uh, I get a t-shirt and a medal.”

Mom: “…that’s it?”

Me: “Yeah.”

Mom: “No money?!”

Me, sighing: “No, not at the level I’m at. Just a medal and a t-shirt. Is that not enough?”

Mom: “No, you should get money or something.”

So there you have it. My mom a) didn’t remember the race I had repeatedly told her I was training all year for, b) said I was going to die when I reminded her about the race, and c) was disappointed that I wasn’t going to win any money or receive an adequate prize upon completion. I knew I should have taken up figure skating — that’s something she can wrap her head around.


  1. I laugh every time we relive this story….so funny!!! tn

  2. Elizabeth /

    This cracks me up. Maybe next year: an endurance figure skating race!

  3. Dr. Pete /

    Don’t tell her you actually have to PAY to run the race – we let that slip with my mother-in-law 🙂 “Yes, Mom, we pay people to do something we could do for free”.

    Congrats on the big finish; just saw your other post.

  4. LOL! I’m sending this to my Asian mom and my brother and sister… they’ll get a kick out of it, too!

  5. Lenny Mayzel /

    That’s awesome!!! Gotta love it!! Congrats on doing so well at IMCda! I am doing it as my first IM in less than 4 weeks, you race report was a great read, very thoughtful and entertaining!!! 🙂


    • Rebecca /

      Which Ironman are you doing? You’ll have so much fun (I know it sounds sick to say that, but it’s true).

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