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Empower Your Journey: Maria’s Triathlon Inspiration

empower your journey triathlon inspiration Maria Sawczuk
Maria Sawczuk
Year started: 2014
Next race: September 17th, Barrelman (Half Aquabike), Niagara Falls, Canada
Favorite gear:

Fuji Supreme Road Bike and Form Goggles

Triathlon is a challenging and exhilarating sport that combines swimming, cycling, and running. For Maria Sawczuk, her journey into the world of triathlon began in November 2014. What started as a casual interest stemming from her relationship with a triathlete quickly transformed into a passion that has shaped her life. Maria’s inspiring story of how it all started showcases the ups and downs of her triathlon journey. Her valuable advice to aspiring athletes will empower your journey to triathlon inspiration.

The First Triathlon: A Learning Experience

Maria’s initial exposure to triathlon came during a vacation in Siesta Key, Florida. Her first race was a true learning experience, filled with unexpected challenges and lessons. As a seasoned cyclist, she underestimated the importance of prescription goggles for sighting during the swim leg. Her turtle stroke swimming led her astray, mistaking a moving red dot for a buoy, only to realize it was a swim cap that had thrown her off course.

Overcoming Adversity and Pushing Forward

Despite the setbacks in the swim, Maria regrouped and embarked on the bike leg, overcoming the challenges that lay ahead. As she transitioned to the final run, she found herself on the paved path of a golf course. The finish line brought disappointment as she crossed it, realizing the anticlimactic nature of her achievement as she was wilted from the heat, and nearly 30 minutes behind the second to last finisher.

The Turning Point and Pursuit of Improvement

However, just 90 minutes after her finish, Maria’s determination kicked in, fueled by her reflections on how the race turned out, and the nagging thought that she could do better. This mindset soon became her mantra, inspiring her to continue her triathlon journey. Despite the end of the relationship that initiated her foray into the sport, Maria persevered and remained committed.

A Journey of Growth and Achievement

Maria’s analytical mindset propelled her forward each year, striving to become a better version of herself. Knee issues caused by arthritis eventually led her to focus primarily on aquabike events, which combine swimming and cycling. Her participation in a super sprint tri fundraiser, organized for a charity connected with her niece’s son, a cancer survivor, brought unexpected success as she clinched her age group victory. This led her to earn a spot at the Age Group National Championships. This achievement repeated the following year, highlighting Maria’s unwavering dedication.

The Role of Team Go Big and Mental Coaching

Maria’s path led her to Team Go Big, a community she discovered through the Athena page on Facebook. There, she connected with Kyla Lupo, the founder of Team Go Big. Maria credits the mental coaching provided by Kyla for providing valuable perspective and fueling her competitive spirit. This support system has helped her overcome the detrimental association of weight with health, offering a more positive outlook on her accomplishments.

Empowerment and Self-Acceptance

Through Team Go Big, Maria discovered a community of athletes who share her experiences and struggles. This realization has been empowering, helping her overcome negative thoughts and cultivate a mindset of growth. Weight-related obstacles, such as finding suitable triathlon clothing, have impacted Maria’s journey. However, she remains determined to race her own race, emphasizing the importance of focusing on personal progress, and not be distracted by what she imagines others saying and doing. She has learned to embrace the term “athlete” as her personal descriptor.

Advice for Aspiring Triathletes

Reflecting on her journey, Maria offers valuable advice to those considering entering the world of triathlon. She encourages them to give it a try without worrying about having expensive gear or a fancy bike. Simply get a pair of goggles and sneakers, borrow a bike, and start the journey. Maria’s story is a testament to the lasting impact of triathlon, showcasing how it has provided her with a wealth of experiences and personal growth beyond her initial expectations.

Empower Your Journey Through Triathlon Inspiration

Maria Sawczuk’s empowering journey into triathlon exemplifies the transformative power of dedication, resilience, and self-belief. From her inauspicious beginnings, she has overcome challenges, achieved remarkable milestones, and found a supportive community in Team Go Big. Her story serves as an inspiration to athletes of all levels, reminding them to focus on personal progress and embrace the empowering journey that triathlon offers. So, take Maria’s advice and dive into triathlon. Empower your journey through triathlon inspiration like Maria’s, it may just change your life in ways you never imagined.