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Overcoming Limits Through Endurance Sports – Adina O’Neill

Overcoming Limits Through Endurance Sports - Adina O'Neill
Adina O'Neill
Year started: 2012
Next race: June 10 2023
Favorite gear:

Boco Visors, Tifosi Sunglasses

Being active has always been in my genes. From my childhood days exploring the woods or trying to avoid falling in the creek I’ve always loved a good adventure. I was on my first swim team at age 5, but I won more spirit awards than medals. I transitioned to field hockey and rugby in high school and college. After having 2 kids, team sports weren’t an option and I was looking for something to do just for myself. Today, I’m overcoming limits through endurance sports and giving back to my community.

Support From My Friends

My friend Red invited me to run a 5K with her. I tried to get out of it because I wasn’t a runner and she told me I could walk. I like to walk, so I registered. And then I decided that if I was going to the race, I should at least make an effort to run. Having no running experience at all, I turned to my brother, Mike for advice. Mike explained how I could run and take short walk breaks, so I practiced that. On the day of the 5K, I was surprised at how much fun I had and how great I felt crossing the finish line.

I fought back with each new distance they suggested especially when my brother said I should do a triathlon. I always said no because I didn’t run and couldn’t possibly imagine running after swimming and biking. But after doing 5Ks and 10Ks I no longer had an excuse. So I bought a bike and started training.

They Didn’t Stop Encouraging Me

And Red and Mike just kept suggesting, encouraging and supporting me. They never gave up on me. I worked my way from 5Ks to a full marathon and completed several sprint, olympic and half distance triathlons. When I finally decided to register for a full Ironman, my mantra was “Believe it. Achieve it.” I wasn’t the fastest or strongest. I didn’t have the best gear. But I finally believed in myself and yes, I crossed that finish line.

I never imagined that I could do these kinds of events and I absolutely love it. I may not look like the elite athletes, but I have just as much desire. What excites me most is finding new adventures to test my limits, like swimming 10 miles or in a frozen lake.

Hard Work + Love Of Sport = Continued Learning

I wasn’t born an endurance athlete and I am not the fastest or fittest person out there. I didn’t just decide one day that I wanted to run and fell in love with it. Working hard at it was the answer. To this day, I still don’t know everything there is to know about cycling or taking care of bikes. I ask for help. And even though I’ve been swimming since I was five years old, I am still learning about technique and improving my stroke. I keep moving forward and keep overcoming limits through endurance sports.