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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Marquette Indoor Triathlon-Season Kick-off

"We are meant to be athletes, not spectators. And we must find our sport." - Dr George Sheehan

My season got off to a good start last Saturday with the Marquette Indoor Triathlon.  It is a small event with only 40 athletes and just the second year for the event. My sports are most certainly swimming, biking and running.

The volunteer are all students and faculty from the University. I was surprised how many of them came up to me and said they remembered me from last year. I guess that is a good reason to be on my best behavior. I wear my Team CMT uniform and it was the only team uniform I saw both years.  So I may be raising a bit of awareness as well.

This race is really relaxed and low key. There were six swim waves and I was in wave number five. My start time was 10:30, so no super early start. Plus I live only about 15 minutes from the race venue.

The swim was right across from check-in and from the bike site.  The run would be three laps around part of Marquette.

The swim was 500 yards, I have been working on perfecting flip turns and hoped to use it for this race. I tried it on the warm-up and decided I just was not ready. When I watched the heat before mine, only one athlete did a flip turn.

The swim was pretty routine.  I was not the last to finish, I beat one of the college guys with a time of 10:50.

The bike portion was a 10 mile course with a giant hill on the compu-trainer. I was last to finish, but averaged 16 mph. Not bad considering I have been riding my trainer this winter, but not doing anything too intense.

I had five minutes to report to the check-in table at the run start and then get to the start line.  The start line was just outside of the check-in building.  It was nice to have everything so close together.

It was 33 F and really windy. When doing a loop, you are going to have the wind in your face twice. At least the predicted rain/snow mix did not happen. There were a couple of nice long up-hill sections. The only bad thing about the run, is you start when done biking, because I was the last one in my wave, I started well after everyone else. That meant I was out on the course by myself.  I did see course volunteers at every corner. They seemed to be Marquette students decked out in the school colors of navy and gold. It was a really cold day to stand there all day, but they cheered every time I passed.

I finished with a total time for the day of 1:22:01. The race is a qualifier for age group nationals in Cleveland.  I qualified last year because I was the only one in my age group. That was not the case this year and I finished 2nd out of two. I am OK with that because I had not plans to go to age group nationals.  My goal for this race was to get a time that qualified me for para-triathlon nationals. The time standard is 1:29 and I was well below that.

It was a really fun race and I got to talk to lots of great people. It was a fantastic way to start off the season.  I also did a bit of networking for my USAT Ambassador role. All in all a great day!


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 Championship.

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 213 members in 39 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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