Area YMCA to host triathlon event

WHEELING – People looking for a way to chase away the winter doldrums without having to freeze outside may want to check out the Wheeling YMCA’s first indoor triathlon.

The new event, dubbed “Y-Tri,” is aimed at giving people the opportunity to exercise during the winter and have fun while doing it. The triathlon will include 10 minutes of swimming, 30 minutes of biking and 20 minutes of running or walking. It is slated for 7 a.m. Feb. 24 at the YMCA, 55 Lounez Ave.

“The intent is to keep moving for 60 minutes and earn a Y-Tri finishers T-shirt,” said organizer Ron Woloshan. “Rather than completing a set distance of swimming, biking and running, our event tracks total distance completed. … Contestants can doggie paddle or float on their backs for 10 minutes, leisurely spin on an indoor cycling machine for 30 minutes, and ambulate at their own pace on the treadmill for 20 minutes.”

People are picked up and dropped off at the Wheeling YMCA.

Participants must be at least 12 years old. There is an entry fee, but YMCA members can participate at a discounted rate. Finishers will earn T-shirts based on distance totals, and sports drinks and energy bars will be available during the race.

Finishers also will be eligible to win door prizes. Entry forms are available at the YMCA or local shops such as Hole N’ Run and Wheelcraft. For information, call (304) 242-8086 or e-mail Woloshan at rwoloshan@aol. com.

“We think this is very doable for many of our members and those that keep their exercise to low-impact and, in the winter months, indoors,” Woloshan said.

He noted the indoor event is a precursor of sorts to plans for an outdoor triathlon planned for September. The YMCA held a similar event 30 years ago.

“We expect to see a wide range of entrants from teens to 70-plus and maybe 80-plus-year-olds, most notably one Harry Castle of Wheeling who was 54 in 1983 when he did his first triathlon at the YMCA, and at age 84 would likely be our oldest contestant,” he said.