Beginner Olympic Program Graduates Conquer the Canadian


What a weekend for Team Triumph!! Our Beginner Olympic Tri Program graduates participated and crushed it at the Canadian on the weekend. We are so incredibly proud of this group who launched into triathlon this year head first. For some of our gang, they went from completing the Sprint / Tri-a-Tri program and jumped right into the Olympic Distance. We set up the program so they could ultimately choose between the 2 distances.

A HUGE shout out to Coaches Gabi and Brenda for doing an awesome job facilitating this program. These two created a wonderful sense of community that provided our athletes with a place to come together, ask questions and occasionally confess that they didn't get their workouts in :) Thank you Gabi and Brenda for being at the race and taking these awesome shots.

Thanks a million to Jackie for providing this fun race report below!

Congratulations to all of our members who participated:

Jackie DeGouffe
Elizabeth Dubois (2nd in AG!)
Carolyn Ellis
Carley Shewchuk
Joanne Zwinkels (1st in AG!)
Sue Bennett (1st in AG!)
Gregory Robertson (3rd in AG!)

Sarah Allen
Shelley Kirkpatrick (1st in AG!) 2 weeks post-Tremblant Ironman!!!!
Ranya El Sadawy
Sarvenaz Moghadden

Lance Valcour (1st in AG!)


It has been a joy getting to know Jackie this season. She is a busy Mum of two young kids and has a busy career. Over the last 9 months, she has realized the importance of getting fit and staying active not only for her physical health and mental health but also she has learned how much happier a Mum and wife she has become. Congratulations on completing two triathlons this season, Jackie. We are all so proud of you!!



I actually had so much fun! This race was amazingly organized and the volunteer local football team made for a seamless kit pickup, body marking and getting my Sportstats chip. This race is awesome and went super well for me. Read on for the details! 

Overall: For the training I put into it (which was by no means complete) I am thrilled with how this all went. 

The swim (750m): I kicked off my swim by putting my wetsuit on inside out and breaking my swim cap. My teammates were so nice in

a) telling me I had my suit on inside out, and

b) offering up extra swim caps (I had one from the race, but the amount of pitching in I heard was just so heartwarming).

As per my coach’s advice, I got in the water and got a few strokes in before the race started. I was nervous, but I told myself that I’ll just take my time and go behind everyone. The countdown ended, and swimmers dashed into the water. I waited for everyone to go in, then I popped in and started swimming. I did the first half mostly front crawl and did a mix of breaststroke and front crawl on the way back. I have to say that swimming a race in open water was much less anxiety-inducing than in a pool because I felt like no one was watching me. Apart from grabbing handfuls of seaweed, I was so thrilled and yelled out a big “Oh my GOD I DID IT!!!” when I was heading to the transition zone. My teammates cheered me on and from that moment on my smile didn’t leave my face. Was it a pretty swim? No. But it was complete and I felt really good. For me, this was pure redemption from my first race this summer. (Also: how cool is it that I did 2 triathlons this season?!?!?!) 

The bike (20k)The bike was a hoot! I was super happy with my pacing and felt so fresh. I downed my Maurten’s drink mix on this ride and had a gel. Nutrition on the bike they say, and I did it! I enjoyed the heck out of this ride. The weather was perfect and I was singing and just loving the sun. My mantra during this race was “do your own thing” and “effortless” and I just felt light and fun. My coach snapped this pic of me and this is pretty much how I was the whole ride. I even rode in the ‘drops’ to add some speed to this race. I am SO much more confident on my bike. The only thing that I didn’t like on the bike was peeling off seaweed from my legs from the swim!


The run (5k)
I can’t believe how well the run went! It had been 2 weeks since I did any sort of training so my expectations were low. I completed the 5k in just over 30 mins and didn’t stop the whole time. What a joy! I was surprised and my smile had the vibe of “oh my god, look at me! I’m completing a triathlon STRONG!!!” One thing I did to keep my mind calm, is that I brought my own water with me. Having my water with me made me feel like I was just on a regular run, and not in a race. So there I was bippin’ and a boppin’ just doing my own thing (as per my race mantra: do your own thing). 

The Training
I trained with Team Triumph virtually and trained alongside those completing the Olympic Distance Program. I signed up knowing I wouldn’t complete all the training as this summer was full of working and taking care of the kids. I am very proud of what I put in and what I was able to complete. I am most proud of not giving up or making the excuse of being too busy. Even with a lot of red boxes on training peaks, I was able not only able to complete the triathlon, but have fun doing it. Did I place? Heck no – but in my mind I did. I will surely be signing up again. I now have the bug, and I want to sprint distance it up more next summer. 

The Race
The Canadian was amazingly organized from my perspective. Everything was clearly marked, we had our own Team Triumph rack, and it was so so so fun. I preferred it over the Early Bird and will make this race one that I frequent. I was nervous to sign up as there are some serious athletes at this race, but the vibe was nice and open and casual. The race director (Adam) was SO nice and encouraged everyone to have fun. Before the swim, he said that if you have an issue and want to get out of the water, go ahead and just move on. What a lovely thing to say to take the pressure off. We’re not getting paid to do this, it’s just for fun! And it really was. Take my money from here on out Somersault – you’ve won this amateur athlete’s heart. 

I 1000% highly recommend joining Team Triumph if you’re looking to get into the sport of triathlon. I have learned so so much from the team, and if they run another Sprint course I will surely join. The community is amazing and filled with amazing supportive people. Also, take my money Team Triumph – what I’ve gained here goes way beyond just swimming, biking and running. 

Thanks for the glowing report Jackie!! Due to the tremendous success of our group programs, we will for sure be doing another Sprint program next February!

The Team
Coach Julia Aimers, Gabi Porter and Brenda Ross

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