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Malibu Race Countdown

Video Countdown to Malibu Triathlon

Much like I did with the NYC Triathlon last month, I’m going to post countdown videos for the Nautica Malibu Triathlon starting September 7, 2016 and ending on September 16 (the day before the first race of the weekend).

There will be two races: an international race on Saturday the 17th and a “classic” distance race on the 18th.  Normally, I would race both in this situation, but I decided to participate only in the shorter classic race.  That should leave me free to film the longer international distance race.

My goal with the countdown is to generate excitement and interest in this particular race as well as triathlon in general.  I also hope to share some of my knowledge regarding triathlon and celebrate the age group triathlete with stories, video and interviews.

As always, I’m trying to explain WHY we do this crazy sport.

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Why The Malibu Triathlon Is Important To Me

My Malibu Story

Malibu is a town on the California coast.  It’s the home of Zuma Beach, The Beach Boys and iconic California surf culture.  It’s also the home of some very wealthy people and modern day cliff

Malibu, California
Malibu, California

dwellers.  I was born in the town next door to Malibu, Pacific Palisades, and lived there for the first 12 years of my life.  I knew Malibu as a kid might know his out-of-town cousins: we were acquainted but not intimately.   In my last two posts, I’ve mentioned Malibu in connection with a triathlon in which I will participate on September 18, 2016.    The race organizers asked all the athletes if they would write a short bio describing their unique situation.  Race organizers do this so they can identify special interest stories that make good PR campaigns.  Usually, they are looking for a cancer survivor or a combat veteran or a 102 year old athlete.  Most of the time, I ignore these requests for stories, but not this time.  TriRiot is about the age grouper, because I believe that everyone has a unique and inspirational story to tell.  Here is what I wrote:

My Triathlon Story
Lowell Gould

Triathlon is an amazing journey and I often say that it is a microcosm of life itself. If that sounds too lofty or cliché, then consider the first noble truth of Buddhism: “To live you must suffer”.

Now, I’m no Buddhist, but I do know that a right amount of suffering is needed to grow in all aspects of life. Grass grows thicker when you mow it, muscles get bigger when you stress them and people learn things after failures. Triathlon embodies all of that.

My story begins with a man who was absolutely obsessed with endurance running and his youngest son who absolutely hated it. You guessed it: I’m the son and my dad is the obsessed runner. This was back in the late 60’s or early 70’s in Pacific Palisades, California: back when you could see Walter Matthau, Ted Knight or many other famous personalities strolling through town.

Dad pushed himself hard because he believed that hard work would yield great results and he was right. He could outrun me when he was 60. On the other hand, I believed that sitting on the couch and watching TV would make me great: which actually worked, because I was the greatest little couch potato ever. I clearly remember one day when I was minding my own business in front of the TV and Dad walked through the TV room. Seeing me sitting there must have triggered something in him, because he lit into me for the first time that I can recall. He yelled at me to get outside and do something active: hit a tennis ball, run to the park, do something other than sit in front of the TV.

That was a long time ago, and around 2004 his words came back to haunt me. I was out of work and suffering from depression and saw no future for myself other than failure: failure of everything. Then something changed and I can’t explain what it was. Maybe a realization that only I had the power to make my life a success. I started lifting weights which I enjoyed somewhat, but still felt unsatisfied. After a year or two of that, my wife urged me to enter a 5K race with her. I did it and found a sense of accomplishment that I hadn’t felt before. That’s when I realized that I really did have my father’s love of endurance sports. It didn’t take long to get hooked on triathlon because I knew many people who had either survived cancer or died from it and the Team In Training program helped me raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. In turn, they trained me for my first triathlon. From then on I could hear the excitement in my father’s voice when he would ask about my training and racing. Those were moments of real connection between father and son, but by that time my father was battling prostate cancer and was no longer running or biking. We were, however, able to swim together a few times at the MPTF pool. Those are moments I will always keep with me.

I raced my second IRONMAN on the first anniversary of Dad’s death. I still keep his picture on my basebars from that race five years ago. He never saw me race, but it made him so happy that I got out there and did it. Winning was never the point for him and it isn’t for me.

These days, my goal is to capture the essence of triathlon. I believe that every triathlete has a story worthy of attention because, every journey to the finish line is a journey of self discovery. There is something deep in the human experience that pushes us to test our physical and mental limits, because only through that testing and pushing are we able to grow.

In my web show (, I attempt to show the world what it means to be a triathlete and why so many people love our sport. I believe there are too many people hesitant to enter triathlon or just get off their couch simply because they don’t believe in themselves. I’d like to change that.

Otherwise, I’m just an ordinary dude having fun, enjoying life and pushing myself to the limit.

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Getting Excited for Malibu

Malibu Excitement

The Nautica Malibu Triathlon is fast approaching.  In my last post, I mentioned that I was in the process of making a video for the Malibu Triathlon video contest.  IT’S DONE!

Know the Course (Video)
Know the Course. 

Click on the photo above to see the video on YouTube (in a new tab in your browser).

Many thanks to everyone who help with this production:
Sami Winter
Lori Gould
Jennifer Young
Kelli Kerkhoff
Beth Andrew
Erin Green
Lori Drake
Ryan Redd
Jennifer Wheeler
Jen Bernard
Erin Jackson

Get A Move On by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (

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Malibu Triathlon Video Contest

Malibu Triathlon Video Contest

I am so excited!  The Nautica Malibu Triathlon is fast approaching (Sept. 17 & 18), but the best part is that they are sponsoring a video contest.


`And they will accept multiple entries from the same person!

This morning, I shot one scene at Wrightsville Beach with an all-star cast of local triathletes.  They were great to work with and we had a lot of fun.

Shooting a scene for the Malibu Triathlon Video Contest
Getting ready to shoot the bike scenes.

This particular video should be ready for submission and viewing by the end of next week (around August 18).

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First Episode of the Season

First Episode of the Season

I haven’t posted any videos for a while.  I’ve actually been concentrating on other video projects.  But now that triathlon season is starting, I plan on posting more TriRiot shows.

This episode, Episode #21, is an interview I did with Sami Winter, Kona qualifier and competitor.  Sami is quite the character.  She’s full of energy and loves to tell her stories almost as much as I enjoy listening to them.  I think you’ll agree.

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Drafting in Ironman


Yesterday I basically gave my opinion on drafting in Ironman with one single solitary lonely word: No.   I’ll expand on that in this post. First, let me explain what drafting is incase you are not too familiar with riding fast bikes in groups of people.

Drafting is the act of using another cyclist to shield one’s self from the wind.  A rider is drafting when she tucks in very closely behind another rider and dramatically reduces her wind resistance.  The rider in front still has to pedal in to a wall of air, but the back rider doesn’t.  You can imagine how this affects cycling over 112 miles.

Why I Say No

I have two reasons why I don’t like drafting.  They are kind of personal so I don’t expect anyone to carry my flag on this issue, but they are pretty important.

  1. Ironman is a test of individual merit, not team strategy.  That’s why it’s called Ironman and not Ironmen.  I don’t mind all that strategy stuff in a bike race and I enjoy watching the draft legal ITU triathlon races.  However, when it comes to an Ironman, every individual is at the mercy of their own athletic abilities. Getting help on the side of the road is OK, because that’s one athlete altruistically helping another.  It’s not game strategy.  (e.g. Chrissie Wellington blew her C02 and got help from another athlete).
  2. If drafting is so desirable, there are venues and events for that.  Go do those.

As long as the rules don’t allow drafting, I’ll be yelling, “Break it up” at the pelotons I see in a race.  Some people have no shame.  It’s a pity that we must have course marshals riding around on Goldwings trying to catch drafters.  They have to be there, because some athletes just can’t follow the rules.

Speaking of rules: why do I have to wear a shirt in an Ironman? There are times when I just…

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Drafting in Ironman

Should Drafting in Ironman Races be Legal?


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Hello 2016 Triathlon Season

Another Season Begins

It’s been over three months since I’ve posted anything here.  Time sure flies when you don’t know what to say!  Actually, I have had a lot to write about, but just haven’t actually written about it.

The 2016 season here in North Carolina got off to a great start on March 12 with the Azalea Sprint.  I had no intention of racing in the Azalea until five or six days before the race.   But looking at the participant list got me fired up and I decided to start the season right then.  My goal was to complete the race in under an hour… SUCCESS!  My time was 58:07.  I think that’s my best time for that race and I trained hard right up to race day: no taper.

My main focus for this Spring is the White Lake Half, April 24. I’ve never been able to do that race in under six hours.  One time, I was over seven hours!  But this year, my goal is 5:45.  I’m feeling good about it.  It will be number 10 for me.

I’ve registered for three big races this year: New York (international distance), Malibu (shorter than international), and Ironman North Carolina (full ironman).  If you’re going to be at any of those, come find me and introduce yourself.  I love meeting new people.

Here’s my race link page: RACE LINKS

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The Eight Days of Hanukkah – Day 3

Trick Question for a Spelling Bee

Why are there multiple spellings of Hanukkah?  We have Chanukah, Hannukah, Hannukkah, and Channukah (in addition to Hanukkah).    How many spellings of Passover do we have?  Or Easter? Or Labor Day?

And what’s with the double K?  How many words can you think of that are spelled with a double K?   Well… quite a few actually, but most of them are compound words with the first word ending in k and the last work beginning with k, like bookkeeper. Of course, there are other words that are legitimate double k words like chukker and pukka.  Sounds like a comedy team, but they really are serious dictionary words.

And the CH?  That’s the fun one.  It’s supposed to be that throat clearing sound.   The sound your 80 year old uncle makes after taking the cigar from his mouth and before he spits on the street. There are no letters in the English alphabet that can effectively describe that sound.  Suffice it to say that it is not pronounced like the CH in chew, chili, or chimichanga.  What about school? Or cache? Nope.  Not those either.

From what I understand, there’s a transliteration problem from Hebrew to English.  Notice I said transliteration and not translation.  And that’s the reason for so many different spellings of the Jewish festival of lights.    If I’m an expert in anything, it is definitely not Hebrew (or English).  So I’d better leave the answer at that: a transliteration problem.

Actually, I think it’s an elitist thing.  If someone asks me how I’m celebrating Hanukkah this year, I can reply with my nose in the air,

“I’m sorry. I don’t celebrate Hanukkah.  I’ll be in the Hamptons celebrating Chanukah.”


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A Day in the Microcosm of Life

Micro What?

In a previous post, I talked about how endurance sport is a microcosm of life.  I’ve had a bit of time to think about that…

2010 NYC Triathlon
2010 NYC Triathlon

… and yep.  I still think it is, but I really should stop using the word microcosm.  If you’re not familiar with that word, you might mistake it for meaning a small orgasm and there’s nothing orgasmic about triathlon.  Not for me anyway.

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