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Kick(off) it into high gear January 28, 2010

Posted by bettyjoan in Mentoring.
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Tuesday night was the Summer 2010 Team In Training Kickoff, which was basically a big pep rally to get folks excited about the upcoming season.  We met some of our teammates and mentorees, we paraded down the “runway” in some fly TNT gear, and we heard lots of stories about why people are involved with the organization.

It was kind of funny, actually, to see the two groups that attended the event.  On the one hand, you had the staff/coaches/mentors, who were all kinds of hopped up – we were hugging folks we hadn’t seen in a while, we were talking shop (what gear did you buy in the off-season, what events are on your race calendar this year, that sort of thing), and we were super-high-energy, revved up and ready to get started with training and fundraising.  On the other hand, you had the participants – some of them were brand new to TNT, some of them were trying a new sport, but all of them were just a bit unsure, a bit hesitant, and a bit nervous.

I was EXACTLY like that last year, when I showed up for the first Group Training Session, or GTS (I had a prior commitment during the Kickoff).  I had signed up for a triathlon, sight unseen, because I wanted to meet people and I wanted both a fundraising and a physical challenge.  I didn’t know anyone on the team, and I had no athletic skill to fall back on.  To say that I was in over my head would be a vast understatement.  It would have been very easy to turn around and walk out of that first GTS, and no one would have noticed – and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think about it.  But my mentor and I found each other and connected, and she was by my side not only during that first run, but throughout the entire season.

I take my role as a mentor very seriously, but not in the sense that my brow will be furrowed all season.  Rather, I think it is my job to be enthusiastic, encouraging, and energetic, so that my love for TNT and the sport of triathlon will be palpable and contageous – and so my mentorees will have no choice but to catch the fever and be as excited about the season as I am!  I never would have had success last season without the support of an AMAZING mentor, and I want to do her proud by giving that same gift to a new group of participants.

I can’t wait for this Saturday’s workout, our first one as a team.  Ready or not, here we come!!!

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