When do I become a triathlete?

smarter goals for 2016 - Dennis BosseHere is a funny question: At what point do I become a triathlete?

The answers will be as varied as “what is the best bike?”…  This is a personal item I will touch on a bit briefly.


When I first started working on triathlon, I never really thought of myself as a “triathlete”. (what is in a label anyway?) All I did was make a decision to register and run a triathlon race.

OK, I made a decision – Am I a triathlete?become a triathlete

I registered for a race – how about now?

I started to exercise and execute a triathlon training program – OK, I MUST be a triathlete now..?

I completed a Sprint triathlon – Here?

I have completed an Olympic distance – come on.. gotta be?

Finishing a 70.3 event – Oh yeah!!

You are who you believe you are

I took the approach that I would call myself a triathlete after I completed my first event. I know others that believe they weren’t a “real triathlete” until they finished an Olympic distance.

Now, looking back, I truly feel you are a triathlete at the point of “I made a decision…” Once this decision was made, your mindset on working towards a healthier person, you are now in the club. Sorry, there is no turning back. <evil grin>

The overall part – does it really matter?

What’s in a label?

Once you are on the path, you are in. There is no label. There is no welcome party (although there should be, complete with bacon appetizers).

Why do we always get caught up in labels. Am I a runner, sure. Am I a biker – yup, how about a swimmer. OK, that one is a bit debatable..  I love working out. I love putting them all together. Entering into this journey is bringing me closer to a healthier me – Mind, body and Spirit. Isn’t that all that really matters?

In the end, we are who we think we are. Don’t get caught up in the labels. Life Triathlon is a journey, enjoy the ride!

What’s next?

I have a few posts already in progress. The next couple may come out pretty quickly. If you have suggestions  comments, please feel free to post below -or send me an email.

Peace and Love,


  1. Jan McClintock on March 4, 2016 at 12:25 pm

    Dennis, I firmly believe that humans are label machines in disguise. We try to classify everything instinctively, and that is mostly okay. But it’s what we believe about OURSELVES that really matters. You are such an inspiration!

    • dennisbosse on March 5, 2016 at 12:19 am

      Thanks Jan! – Yes, it seems like we need to label everything.. why can’t we just “be”?

      • Sue on March 5, 2016 at 9:43 am

        Everyone always asks…”what do you do”?. I never know how to answer that. Do they mean, for a living? For fun? I really wish we DIDN’T have to label EVERYTHING…it gets exhausting. Like you, I’m not into labels…anymore. At one time, yes..college student, label 1…machinist…label 2, etc. I’m just me…like me, hate me, but I’m just me…

  2. Denis on March 4, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    What I find interesting is that this question even exists. Do I do tris or am I a Tri? However, it is about inclusion and exclusion, mostly self imposed. I was chatting with a nurse yesterday and we discovered we both have interests in tris. She has done many including an Ironman. I have not done one yet and am in training. I never felt anything about who I am versus who she is, rather we shared something and had a cool conversation, in whihc she provided a couple of tips. I have only chatted with a few folks about my new adventure, who are triathelets and all have been welcoming. Final thought, I have been a runner for decades and believe as soon as I intentional ran for fitness I was a runner. .

    • dennisbosse on March 5, 2016 at 12:19 am

      You and I are on the same wavelength..

  3. Jeff F on March 22, 2016 at 9:14 am

    Congrats Dennis either way that is amazing and you look great.
    I went thru a bit of the same as I did my first 2 sprints in 2014 then stepped up and added an Olympic last year. Journey has been great and I love it too, though Ive had similar thoughts. Do you need to place at a certain tier in results for it to “count”? I decided I’m doing this for me because i love having something to work towards and I don’t really care!!!
    Sadly I can’t say the same for my SCUBA work, haven’t put a regulator in my mouth since certified back in late 2012 🙁 holy cow how 3.5 years flies!

    • dennisbosse on March 29, 2016 at 9:57 pm

      Thanks for stopping in Jeff! Hope to see you at a few races this summer… Yeah, scuba has taken a back seat due to other issues (sinus) for me.


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