Despite my best efforts to get this outsourced I have been instructed to write my own origin story…not really much of a story, but here it goes… I was born with an insatiable need to be busy…

After my first year teaching in the middle of nowhere Manitoba, an impromptu weekend visit to Vancouver made me realize that Vancouver is the ideal place for someone like me to live. Biking, hiking, kayaking, and snowboarding all outside my door… I packed up and moved here (everything I owned easily fit inside my car) and embraced it all. Eventually buying a house, I filled my free time with renos and when those were done I decided to do my Masters of Education just to ensure I never had even a moment of free time. On the last day of my final class, an overwhelming sadness filled me…. I was done. I had nothing to do.

What could I do? OMG I am sooooo bored. I looked at my husband and said, “I think I’m going to apply to do another Masters or maybe a doctorate.” He rolled his eyes and said. “Why don’t you go for a run to think about it?” Within minutes I was running my school textbooks up Burnaby Mountain to SFU. (I felt like it was symbolic in some way) 6 big textbooks, 5 of which I never even opened, 16 km from start to finish…up through Vancouver Heights and up Capital Hill. It was then that I had an epiphany… It wasn’t that I should sign up for more school…it was then that I realized I LOVE TO RUN. To quote Forrest Gump…”from then on I was a running fool…. anywhere I went I was"

Tammy Start
Tammy Start


Two months after my epiphany I finished my first ½ marathon, 3 months after that my first full marathon. I was addicted. Running makes me happy, thinking about running makes me happy, looking at my collection of running shoes even makes me happy - nothing beats a long run and the runner’s high that comes with it.


I spend my weekends in Whistler and am enamoured by the beauty of the drive up highway 99 to get there. So when I heard that once a year they close the highway down so people can ride their bikes up one of the most scenic highways in the world I decided I must do this. I set out to buy a road bike…knowing nothing about bikes I chose it based on colour. A few months later I peddled myself up to Whistler. It was hard work, but worth it. I’m not going to lie…. I don’t love biking, well not on a road bike. I rather ride my mountain bike but that would make me even slower during a race so I will stick with the road bike.


One weekend in Whistler we were stumbling home as Ironman Canada was going on. It was nearing midnight and I was watching some of the last finishers cross the line. Someone said, “You should do a triathlon,” (looking back I’m not even sure they were talking to me) but I thought…Hey…I SHOULD do a triathlon. I can run, I can kinda ride a bike; I just need to relearn how to swim.


It was on my second set of swim lessons that I met Trevor…he turned to me during the first class and said…”Wow a 50-meter pool…looks so long…do you promise to save me if I don’t make it all the way to the other side?” Trevor was the only person who was less serious than me in those lessons, if you tried to pass him he would grab your foot and pull you back, he made funny comments about our classmate’s swim trunk choice and he always showed up with his gear in a very tattered old Safeway bag.

Tammy Swim (2)
Tammy Swim (2)

So that’s my story. Really not so interesting. I like to run, swim and bike…I need to keep busy…so I train for triathlons.

I started with Olympic distance, the moved to ½ and now apparently a full (yikes!) I enjoy planning and training for a race much more than the race itself.

I make fancy colour coordinated spreadsheets that I look at every night.

I try to find ways to sneak workouts into my day by doing things like running home from work, biking to the pool, swimming with my dog or playing an intense game of teacher tag with my class.

Honestly, I’m not really sure why I want to do a full ironman…but I know that Brandon and Trevor are two of the funniest people I have even met…and if I need to signup for 17 hours of torture just to be on their team then so be it :)

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