Mauricio Sanchez had no idea he would inspire his whole family to participate in triathlons when he decided he needed to start exercising to lose weight and overcome back pain in 2003. He wanted to bring back his quality of life, and in the process brought his family together in wellness and sport.
Sanchez started jogging then running, progressing to half marathons but soon got bored with only running and added biking and swimming to his routine.
“I learned through the process the positive impact that exercise brought to my life. Not just the physical impact, but the mental and emotional impact as well. I was really enjoying what I was getting out of this. I think my family was too.” Sanchez said.
With triathlon, he began with shorter distance races around his home state of Tennessee, developed a love for the sport and was soon traveling around the country competing in half Ironmans and in 2011 finished his first full Ironman.
Even after going through treatments for thyroid cancer, foot surgery and overcoming plantar fasciitis his wife Monica decided she wanted to get in on the fun and has now competed in several sprint triathlons. Their oldest daughter Juliana, 27, became a triathlete in March ,”I crossed the finish line and was immediately addicted. I could see why my parents are into this sport. I’m ready to jump on this full force.”
Mauricio’s grandson Colton, age 8, was inspired by his Grandpa (Papa) and last summer competed in his first kids triathlon and has plans to do three this summer. Mauricio’s younger brother has also since started competing in triathlons and their youngest daughter Marcela, a Division 1 NCAA soccer player finishing up her nursing degree likely will make it a complete family affair one day.
“I’d like to think the family has joined in this awesome adventure, purely and simply due to an example well set.”
On May 5th, Mauricio, Monica and Juliana will all compete in Rev3 Knoxville’s Olympic distance race, the first race at this distance for all of them. The family regularly does their long bike rides and runs together, usually on the weekends but tries to find time during the week to swim, bike or run together.
“Very often you find at least two of us together, either at the pool or riding or running.” Sanchez added.
They also find camaraderie training with a local triathlon club, Hendersonville Endurance Athletic Team (HEAT), many of who will be at Rev3’s Knoxville race as well.
Rev3 offers a family feel to racing and a weekend full of events
The Sanchez Family was particularly drawn to Rev3’s appeal to families; their weekend full of activities and races for all members of the family. Friday night there is a Rev3Glow 5k race and 1k fun run and Saturday there is a Little Rev Family Adventure race that pairs parents and kids racing together. Sunday are the main events, an Olympic Rev and Half Rev.
“One thing that blew my mind was when two days after we registered, we (each one of us) received a telephone call from a representative from Rev3 thanking us for signing up. That was pretty cool. That had never happened with ANY of the races I have ever done.”
The Sanchez Family plans to compete in at least 2 more sprint triathlons around Tennessee together this summer and look forward to traveling to more Rev3 races in the future.