Press Release: Mere Mortals training Group in Pensacola FL


Tom Henderson

Hello! Please see attached press release and photos available on the web at Each year many of our participants don't find out about the
training until several weeks after the start, and they lose the benefit of the early sessions. We'd
really appreciate you help in getting the word out on this free training group. Give me a ring at
850-932-6953 (home) or 850-969-7002 (work) if you have additional questions.


Tom Henderson

--------------------- PRESS RELEASE ------------------- For immediate release:

Mere Mortals triathlon training group starts June 1 on Pensacola Beach.

Ah, the eagerly awaited arrival of Spring and Summer in the panhandle area! Finally we can head to
the beach for a nice swim in the Gulf, or perhaps a bike down the beach road, or a run through the
neighborhoods along the Gulf.

Tom Henderson of the Tri Gulf Coast Triathlon Club thinks you should do all three, back to back!

Henderson will be organizing the Mere Mortals Triathlon training group, a free group sponsored by
Tri Gulf Coast and Grants from Bike Florida and the Santa Rosa Island Triathlon. The group has been
meeting each summer since 1997. Participants will gather every Sunday Morning (excluding holiday
weekends) at 6:30 a.m. to train as a group and to benefit from the knowledge of experienced
triathletes and expert speakers. Training will begin with each discipline (swimming, biking, and
running) separately, and will slowly combine the events and increase the duration and distance.
Training culminates in a 1/3 mile swim, 18 mile bike, and
3.1 mile run which duplicates the course used in the Santa Rosa Island Triathlon two weeks before
the race date.

"That's one of the big benefits of participating in the Mere Mortals," says Henderson, "By the time
race day arrives, the Mere Mortals know they're ready, because they've trained on the same course
they'll be racing on."

Intimidation and lack of familiarity with the rules, strategies, and tips and tricks of the sport
are the main obstacles many hopeful triathletes face, according to Henderson. "We help the aspiring
triathlete by removing those obstacles one at a time over three and a half months of training. They
have an opportunity to swim in open water with the group, learn the rules which govern the sport,
and gain knowledge and confidence they might not training on their own. Many potential triathletes
don't attempt a race because they think you have to be a super-athlete to complete one. We help them
discover that with sensible, gradual training, almost anyone can become a triathlete, and they can
even have fun doing it!"

So what equipment does the average Joe or Jane need to become a triathlete? "While the sport can be
expensive for those who choose to get heavily involved in the sport, you don't need to spend a
fortune for your first race," Henderson says. "For the swim, you'll need a bright colored swim cap
and a set of goggles. For safety reasons, we require the swim cap. Of course you'll need a bike for
the cycling portion of the race, and we absolutely require a helmet, again for safety. Almost any
traditional bike will do. Recumbent bikes are not allowed, and it would be best if the bike has
gears. A good pair of running shoes will protect your feet from injury on the run portion, and
that's about all you have to own for your first race. There are hundreds of optional accessories to
help make you faster or make things easier, but we'll talk about those in training and educate our
participants on their use."

The group meets in the main parking lot of Pensacola Beach each Sunday morning at 6:30 am
starting June 1.

For more information: Mere Mortals web site: - click the "Mere Mortals"
link Santa Rosa Island Triathlon: Tom Henderson: Phone - 850-932-6953, email
- [email protected] Email discussion list for Mere Mortals: send an email to Mere-Mortals-
[email protected] or see Mortals/

---------------------- END PRESS RELEASE ------------------------

Photos: Retreive these photos from
4: Victor Bagley of Truly Spokin' instructs the Mere Mortals on changing a flat tire in the
summer of 2000.
5: Paul Epstein of Running Wild speaks with the Mere Mortals about running equipment.
6: Tom Ashton gives a presentation on open water swimming and equipment.
7: A group shot of the 2002 Mere Mortals from July of 2002.
8: Jay Yanovich, a USA Triathlon race official, explains the rules and regulations of the sport.

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