Wednesday, July 11, 2012


Trying to put thoughts to paper the past couple days has been a big challenge for me, mostly because I keep catching myself begin to whine or pout only to realize "it could be worse".  You know what it feels like, in some way, like I lost my job.  It feels like I just joined the ranks of the 20 million people that lost their jobs in the past year.  Waking up usually begins with a goal, a plan, and a training day set out before me all because those 3 things put together in place lead me to race day.  Race day leads me to "work and hopefully make a pay day". 

I've never been one to just sit still wishing, waiting, hoping the tide will change.  So I've been pretty pro active in looking for another means-to-an-end. At the same time I've been cooperating with everything USAT wants/needs from me to sort out the situation and under tearful phone calls Mr. Crawford has been good about answering every thought I'm thinking.  The biggest is, "Can I race?".  On my list is Philippines 70.3 and Ironman Louisville in 4 and 7 weeks.  He has told me to go forth and prepare for them and pull out if they end up suspending me for a year.  That is a hard thing to swallow, because the flight to both of those places from Hawaii is not exactly pocket change or a short trip.  He believes it will take longer than that to conclude my case, but it could be sooner.  The other hard part, the part that makes me feel so bad about REV3 Portland and the REV3 crew that were so good to me is wondering why I couldn't have raced then too, if I can do a couple more till case closed (as in hopefully sorted out with me back into sport full time).

Yesterday I woke up and "trained" or maybe it was just a "run" since I'm not even sure if this is my job at the moment.  Kainoa came with me on his bike, that was a very big smile on my face.  He kept me focused on what matters most and my head was kept peaceful.  I actually ran 14 miles-just in case I race.  Then I did all the research I need to take care of for teaching, like paperwork.  That hard part is school starts in Hawaii in 3 weeks, so now what?!  Scramble for a job, beg a principal, land one, then pull out if I get to keep racing triathlon?  Or do I just train and prepare to race and worry about a job after the USAT stuff is sorted.  It is such a scary position for this mom and I'm still not even sure how I landed this mess...but I always land in a mess without trying...and somehow messes clean up.

On the other end, USAT has been busy checking all my results to make sure I never raced any of them since 2008 (when I got my pro card), as an age group athlete.  I can assure you I did not, I even promise.  Then they had to check for a pro card, my first pro race was St. Anthony's in Florida if I remember right, I met Charlie Crawford there for the first time.  He didn't remember that and wondered how I even got into that pro race because he couldn't find a pro card for me, so I had to send him a photo of my Elite Card today.  That was fun. Now he is curious how the information on the computer is showing that I didn't have one, when I do.  Finally, send in my race results. 

For a female to race in the ELITE wave you have to submit results showing you have finished within 8% of the winner's time.  Example:  Hawaii 70.3 you had to finish in 4:47or better on that course, on that day.  I had a 4:32.  All of my results made it/make it.  I know, sometimes I have bad races but they still land this mom in the 8%, so I race ELITE, love it, and reach daily to become better.  I'm pretty sure if I raced 30-35 age group the girls would not like me and to be honest, getting my butt kicked and the challenge of the pro women thrills me and makes life feel like I am living fully...

All that said, there is always something more beautiful going on in the middle of chaos.  Check this out.  Dolphins hugging, or maybe dolphins dancing?  It could even be dolphin baby making in my back yard...

Again, thank you for the outpouring of support, I've been trying to respond to the emails, I'll get to them, (or maybe have Kainoa write you back). Finally, thank you to the REV3 crew for being so supportive during this, I hope I did not get you in any trouble, also thank you to Mr. Crawford, Anna, and Christina at USAT for trying to work with the athletes...



Tina Z said...

You don't know me and I'm just a follower/fan so feel free to completely ignore this post. That said, I wonder if you can petition to race. It's within your rights as a member to pursue a petition if they keep stalling you or reach an unfavorable decision. Then it makes it more formal and signals that you're exercising your rights as a member, not letting them call all the shots. Organizations, even the best ones, sometimes do things that cause harm to their members, intentional or not. Just be sure to exercise your rights if you feel their actions are unjustly affecting you as a member. And good luck!

From USAT rules:
11.3 Appeals of Protests and Other Matters. Except for appeals from disciplinary hearings which must be made under Section 11.5, unless otherwise provided in these Rules all appeals shall be made and processed in accordance with this Section.
a. Time and Fee for Filing Appeal. An appeal must be filed in writing with the USA Triathlon Executive Director postmarked within 30 days after the date of the decision or determination being appealed and must be accompanied by a $100 filing fee. The filing fee shall be refundable only if the appeal is finally determined in the appellant's favor.
b. Contents of Appeal. The appeal shall be in the form of a petition and shall contain the following:

(1) The petitioner's name, address, and telephone number;
(2) A detailed description of the factual background including the date, time, and precise location of any relevant incidents and an identification of the decision being appealed and the person or persons who rendered the decision;
(3) Any relevant Rules, regulations, or policies and an application of the facts to those Rules, regulations or policies;
(4) A detailed explanation of all of the grounds for the appeal;
(5) All of the evidence that the athlete wishes to be considered and the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of any witnesses;
(6) A request to participate orally at the hearing if so desired; and
(7) A request for additional time if desired, not to exceed 14 days, within which to submit additional written materials. Requests to participate orally at hearings will be granted only in exceptional circumstances, and all petitioners should therefore ensure that their appeal contains all relevant information when submitted.

Christy said...

I really have to question USAT right now. I even had problems with my renewal this year. I had to email them three times to update my status of my membership. My payment posted and took them three weeks to renew my membership. Unreal.

Keep your chin up!!! Stay strong!

JC said...

Stay strong and things will fall into place.

Nibbles said...

I don't know why they have to put you through this. It just doesn't make any sense. I'm sure you'll figure out a way to get all your bases covered. We are all pulling for you!

Monica said...

Oh my gosh, I am just so frustrated for you! I hope this clears up soon because being in lingo is the worst. Like you said how are you even supposed to plan. I'm rooting for you that everything works out quickly!

Lucy Francis said...

Bree you belong in the PRO ranks!
Did Lance have to race anything before USAT and the WTC let him race pro? Not that I can remember.
it sounds like lack of organization/common sense to me. My federation is the same :-( the BTF.
I'm sure they'll realize they've made a mistake
Wouls you be able to combine teaching with racing Pro for a year?

Shevaun said...

Sorry for your troubles with USAT. Their organizational skills seem limited at best. Hope you are able to reach a swift conclusion.

Lani said...

Bree - In the moment it makes no sense - down the road you'll understand why - not that that helps in the moment - but I have to tell you I am disappointed with USAT both for you and as a member -where was their communicaiton with you (email, letter, etc) that you weren't current (or whatever the problem was) - how far do you want to take this - do you have legal grounds to show they did not keep adequate records (as it appears to be from what you've said) thereby preventing you from racing and earning a living?

Either way - keep swimming, biking and running - you inspire us all!

Unknown said...

I really enjoy reading your blog. You have such a great attitude & it inspires me! Keep up the great posts.