By Wiley Rankin
I first got interested in doing a triathlon in 2011 when I got back into running. I have always enjoyed
swimming, and we had an old bike, so I figured what the heck. A friend from church told me
about the Bay Area websites for triathlons and there were a million possibilities. The idea of doing a benefit for CMN came naturally after I heard about Anna Stange doing an amazing hike and family concert series along the Appalachian Trail as a fundraiser for CMN in 2009.
I got a foot injury in May 2011, followed by physical therapy and the therapist’s introducing me to a radical concept: “Wiley, why don’t you actually get some good shoes?” So for the first time in my life, I spent more than $50 on running shoes. Oh my gosh. When I put these shoes on, I felt like, “This is unfair, it feels like a trampoline.”
I found my event (Marin County Triathlon http://www.marintriathlon.com/) and I got the good advice from the organizer to do the shorter event the first time out. Yikes, I’m glad I did. The course has a lot of hills for the biking and running, and the swim is in San Francisco Bay, some against the current. There are 2 categories: Sprint (misnomer, because I can’t sprint at these distances) and Olympic. So I did the Sprint: 500 meter swim in the Bay, with a wetsuit, which I had never worn before except briefly the weekend before, 8-mile bike through the hills, and 3.1-mile run through a hilly area.
The idea for the video came from our niece and nephew whom we visited after the CMN conference in September 2011. We sped to a performance in Hanover, NH, right after the Joanne Hammil Magic Penny ceremony at the conference in Hyannisport. We stayed with Bess, Paul and Peter Schmidt and they showed us their skills in making iMovies with puppets. It was so fun!
We got ideas for using Facebook to publicize the event from Mr. Billy, a fellow CMN member. I signed up for the triathlon, and away I went! I really liked doing this for a larger purpose. This showed me how I could turn something I love into something even better – a benefit for CMN.
You can do this, too. If a triathlon isn’t your thing, find an event in which you feel purposeful. If you can make it available to the public through social networking and a video, you can ask even more people to support your effort. You can direct them to this page: http://cmnonline.org/donate.aspx. At the bottom of the page, there is a space for making a special designation.
Speaking of videos, at the top of that page there is a nifty video by Carole Stephens and Susan Salidor, which sets a very friendly tone for CMN’s fundraising efforts.
My triathlon video for 2012 is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UmdVXsOvLgM
Feel free to contact me with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
Wiley Rankin is a former Board member of CMN, and a member of our Fundraising Committee.