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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Capitol View Triathlon

Race Swag Capitol View Triathlon, Waunakee Wisconsin

"Nothing will work unless you do." - Maya Angelou

You never know what things you do in training you will someday need in a race.  I got a chance to test that at the Capitol View Sprint Triathlon on May 21st.  Even late May is really early in Wisconsin for a triathlon.  I signed up for the race because it was in Governor Dodge State Park in Wisconsin. The location was only about 4 miles from my brothers house in Waunaukee.

That meant an easy drive on race day.  I wanted to do an early triathlon to shake off the rust. The first open water swim of the season always seems a bit rough to me. I wanted to get some practice in a race that did not mean much.

I knew the water would be cold, but after a day of pouring rain the water temperature was 53 F on race day. The Olympic distance swim course was shortened to the same as the sprint distance due to the cold.

I always do a swim warm up and knew it would be important with the water being so cold. I wanted to be sure I got in a good pre-race swim so that my asthma did not cause me any trouble.

I got in and was treated to the feeling of chilly water running down my spine inside of my wetsuit.
Every time I put my face in the water to swim, I got an ice cream headache.  I was afraid what would happen if I tried to force the issue.

I remember a friend telling me that the lake was really shallow so I decided to see how far I could run in the water. I often did running in the pool when I was training for marathons since I can't run every day.  The 400 meter swim course was an upside down U. I was able to run to the first turn. The kayakers told me the race director was going to allow walking and running on the course. Word quickly spread.

I was in one of the last swim waves and I watched almost every athlete, even the elites, walking and running the course. The runners seemed to be as fast as the swimmers.  Everyone ran to the first turn, then swam for a bit until the second turn.  After the second turn it was shallow enough to run again.  I did side stroke and back stroke for the swim part. I was calm the whole way. It was the best 400 meter swim I've every had.

I got to transition and my hands were so numb from the cold, I could not buckle my helmet or get on my bike gloves.  The air temperature was only about 55 F so I needed a jacket for the bike ride.

The rest of the race was pretty routine. The bike was hilly and windy.  The 5K run was mostly on trails in the park. I turned my ankle on a rock. The trails were quite muddy and slick going up and down hills. The worst part of the run was the last mile in open grass fields. There was standing water and mud from the rains the day before. Everyone was covered in dark black mud. I wore a really old pair of running shoes for the race because I knew it would be muddy. I ended up throwing them away when I got home.

I finished 3rd out of three women in my age group with a time of 1:40:40.  A great way to start the season.

World Championship Aquathlon Cozumel 2017

Chris Wodke
Founder & Manager Team CMT

Chris is a triathlete and long distance runner. She is a three time participant of the Boston Marathon.  In 2012 she finished 2nd at Boston in the Mobility Impaired Division. She was on the course in 2013 when the bombs exploded.

She has appeared three times at the Paratriathlon National Triathlon Sprint Championship. She was the 2012 and 2014 National Champion Paratriathlon Open Division Champion.

In 2014 she was the PC Open Champion at the Duathlon National Championship and at the Aqua bike National Championship in 2016. She represented Team USA at the Aquathon ITU World Championship in Chicago in 2015 and at the World championship in Cozumel in 2016.  

 In 2014 she represented the U.S. as a paratriathlete at the Pan-American Triathlon Championship in Dallas, Texas.  She has won state championships in cycling and triathlon as a senior Olympian. In 2017 she placed 2nd in her age group at the Winter Triathlon National Championship, earning a spot on Team USA for the World Champsionship.

She travels around the country raising awareness of CMT.

She is the author of the book, “Running for My Life” that details her experience as a CMT affected athlete.

You may visit her author page at:

Team CMT is a group of athletes and supporters working to raise awareness and to find a cure for CMT. We have 210 members in 38 states. We also have members in Australia, England, Scotland, Canada, Vietnam, Turkey, Finland, Scotland, France, Poland, Iran, Norway and Sweden. If you wish to join us visit our web site; or

CMT or Charcot-Marie-Tooth is the most commonly inherited peripheral neuropathy. It affects over 155,000 Americans (as many as MS).  It is a disease of the nerves that control the muscles. It is slowly progressive, causing loss of normal function and or sensation in the lower legs/feet and arms/hands.

Symptoms include; muscle wasting in the lower legs and feet leading to foot drop, poor balance and gait problems Atrophy in the hands causes difficulty with manual dexterity.

Structural foot deformities such as high arches and hammer toes are common.

Poor tolerance for cool or cold temperatures and many people have chronically cold hands and feet.

Additional symptoms may include fatigue, sleep apnea, breathing difficulties and hearing loss.

Additional Link
Follow CMT affected Paratriathlete Timmy Dixon

Follow CMT Author Chris Steinke

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