Canada's Para-triathlete of the year for 2016 will be in Steinbach this Sunday. Triathlon Manitoba is organizing a camp and Chantal Givens of Winnipeg will be there to train with athletes.
Triathlon Manitoba has announced this one-day camp is open to 11 to 19-year-olds. It begins at 10 am at Steinbach Aquatic Centre for swim and time trials. The group will then move to Steinbach Bible College for lunch, a lecture and bike workout. The day will end at 3 pm.
"The idea is to get a bit of good training in," says Givens. "But also to give exposure to the sport and to get people excited and see what triathlon is really about."
Givens says it is important for her to help out in this way because triathlon is a fantastic sport, but one that doesn't get a lot of exposure. She notes Manitoba has produced some amazing triathletes. Last summer she competed at the Paralympic Games in Rio; it was the first time triathlon was a Paralympic sport.
"Being part of the very first event ever was something amazing," she says.
Though not critical, Givens says getting into triathlon at a young age is certainly helpful. She entered her first event at age 24 but says starting at a young age allows you to develop some of the technical aspects. Givens says not only does your body adapt more quickly when you are younger but it is also easier to develop discipline and habits at a young age.
For those who think the Olympics is nothing more than a far-off dream, Givens says, dream big, but live each day by setting little goals and focus on the process. She says even if that means improving only one aspect, such as a swim stroke.
"If you focus on the process, the outcome follows," she says. "One of the big things too with triathlon is being consistent."
Givens admits for her, swimming is the most difficult of the three disciplines because she doesn't come from a swimming background. And she says the least difficult is the running discipline. Though running has some technical aspects, she says it requires a lot of training and being able to use mental strategy to push oneself.
The registration deadline for Sunday's event is Friday, January 13 at 5 pm. To register, or if you have any questions, contact Leah Kerger at firstname.lastname@example.org.