An Open Letter to Triathletes Applying for the Endurance Films Racing Team
A new season is here, and with it comes a new opportunity for a select few triathletes – a chance to become part of the Endurance Films Racing Team (EFRT). As a sincerely grateful and enthusiastic member of the inaugural EFRT, I feel compelled to say a few words to those triathletes applying for this years team.
Being a member of EFRT has had the greatest effect on my short triathlon career. As a competitive age grouper in the men’s 40-44 age group, I have had to invest a lot of effort, time, money and more to indulge my triathlon ambitions. Without EFRT, I would have felt alone, just another middle age man in a race. Being on EFRT, however, made me feel special. The fact that I had to be selected for the team, the fact that I was now wearing a uniform and had sponsors, the fact that I had other teammates competing and making the podium at races across the country and even around the world, the fact that my race reports and blog posts were being read not just by a local audience, but a national audience, all of these things made me feel like a professional triathlete. This is exactly what Danny and Eric promised – to give an age grouper the chance to feel like a professional. This, in turn, motivated me to train and race harder and smarter. I do not know if I would have attempted Ironman South Africa had I not had been on EFRT. Finally, EFRT helped bring exposure to my other ambition, Fitness Trucking LLC. In a way, EFRT “legitimized” me as a triathlete, giving me the confidence to promote and project myself as such, which helped my Fitness Trucking business.
I share this because the benefits of being an EFRT member are not always obvious. Some people seek to become a “sponsored” athlete in order to get money or gear. And although Danny and Eric have made it possible for EFRT to get both, including some really sweet uniforms, if you are looking simply just to get stuff, this is not the team for you.
EFRT is not a club team. We do not live together or train together. Endurance Films has international exposure, and their DVDs are found all over the world. Buy a triathlon magazine in London or Port Elizabeth, South Africa, and guess what – you will find an Endurance Film DVD inside! So one of the responsibilities of being on EFRT is becomming an international ambassador, and many of my teammates are now competing in championships around the world.
The biggest responsibility, however, is becomming the best triathlete you can be and SHARING THAT EXPERIENCE ON THE EFRT BLOG, FACEBOOK, TWITTER, YOUTUBE AND OTHER SOCIAL MEDIA. We all learn and get inspired be the very dynamic experiences of each EFRT member. Without the communication of such, the team doesn’t grow. We have had some really fast EFRT members, some who have turned professional, who, unfortunately, did not communicate their journey. As a result, we as a team lost valuable opportunities to develop EFRT. So if you are just looking at EFRT as a stepping stone towards a professional career, then this is not the team for you. On the other hand, if you treat your triathlon training and racing with integrity, and are willing to be open and share your journey as it happens, then good luck and I hope to have you as an EFRT teammate this year in Burlington, Vermont at the USAT Age Group National Championships.