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Tri It Now athlete's stories

We love hearing from our athletes about their participation
 in our events and how that has impacted them
.

We'd like to thank Lester for sharing his story about becoming a triathlete. Tri It Now is pleased to have helped him find this healthy activity to add to his life!

My name is Lester Benitez , Im originally from Guatemala. About 10 years ago I was a 300 lbs guy, in my early 40s, professional couch potato, never swam a lap in my life. As a kid I was an elite bmx & bike lover (punk riding bikes). Chasing soccer balls was my running background and I was a father of my just born miracle baby, Lance ( of course ). I was looking for the way to get in shape, be healthy to be around for my kid. One day I met a client, and now my friend, Donna Rostant who led me to triathlon. I google local races and clinics and I got in touch with Ina from Tri it now. I signed up for a clinic because I had no clue about triathlon!! Sprint/Olympic or Ironman was like English was to me 35 years ago when I moved to the USA for the first time (and I still struggle with it, you guys can see, lol). The clinics last 2 days, Coach Ina and Coach Anne Viviani (RIP) were amazing. I remember World Champion/Coach Viviani brought 2 of her medals from Kona (Ironman World Championship) and that day I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my life, BE A TRIATHLETE!!!!

Long story short, the clinic included a free race from Tri it now, so I signed up for 14.09 sprint  race in the middle of the summer. I remember finishing 56th overall and like 12th in my age group. I was just happy to survive.  I remember saying on the run why am I doing this ? but pain went away when I crossed finish line, haha. From that day on, the rest is history.  I went back a year later to the same race, 125 lbs lighter, and I won the overall!! Then I qualified for Team USA. I finished every distance in triathlon including IRONMAN.  I qualified for Boston Marathon and twice to 70.3 Ironman Worlds Championship. Now Im a father of another miracle baby, Joaquin. Sport achievements are cool, but still my goal at age of 50  is to see my kids graduating from college, and why not ? See my grandkids!!! Now as sponsored triathlete by SlayRx ,Peak Performance SP & Tri Coach Georgia, I raced all over the world. Some people asked me why I go back every year to race in Manassas, VA.  My answer is because Tri it Now is my HOME.


Looking forward to welcoming you to a race
back home with us this season, Lester!