This blog post was written by Laurie McGorry - Are you a PITA athlete in 2015?
Why not do PITA? What are you afraid of? A few hills? Well let me explain a little about PITA for those of you who don’t know about PITA and also for those who have done PITA. PITA stands for Pain in the Alleganies and is a triathlon that is located at Allegany State Park put on by Score This!!!. PITA is a diamond in the rough!! I absolutely LOVE this race. It is my favorite half iron distance race without the IM brand name on it. It is the best kept secret race. I do wish more people would do this one as it is an awesome race. Score This!!! has an awesome race announcer, awesome music playing and awesome volunteers.
OK now let’s get to really why I love this race. PITA’s swim is awesome because more than likely you will not have waves to battle and it is the only part of the race that is not uphill. If you get a day in ASP when it is windy, the waves on the Red House Lake will not be bad. You can be guaranteed that you will not have to fight high waves. It’s an inland lake and horn time of the swim is early enough any way. Another reason why I LOVE this race is that there are many, many hills. I used to be so afraid of hills but love them now. This coming up year (2015), they changed the bike course so you will not have to worry about dodging the bumps in the road. The course for the bike is very smooth. Yes the bike and run course have hills but you have to look beyond those hills and have to admire the beauty of having a race in the ASP. With the uphill’s you have the downhills. The run and bike have many shady areas where you can get out of the sun if it is a hot day out there. The way I look at it, what goes up must go come down. If you want to go fast on the down hills, PITA’s bike course is the one to do it at.
There is something about Allegany State Park that is close to my soul. It stems back from when I was a kid. When I was a kid, my parents used to have picnics down there with my mom’s family. I have a picture of me and my grandmother at Red House Lake by the stairs that you run by in the beginning of the run course right near the picnic area. My parents would also camp there when we were younger. With my parents gone now, my siblings and I carry on the tradition of cabin camping. We go the same week every year. So doing this race is spiritual to me. There is an aura so to speak that draws me to Allegany State Park. It could be the beauty of it or it could be the history behind Allegany State Park.
Where can you go to do a race and be able to camp and have campfires? My walk this year to transition area was soo beautiful. At 4:45 AM, I was walking to transition, drinking my coffee, and taking my gear down with my hubby. The sky was sooo beautiful with many, many stars out. Obviously it was still dark out. It was silent, oh so silent. I really enjoyed that this year. I stayed in Beehunter and was within walking distance of transition. I guess being in ASP gives me my balance back. It brings me back to my inner peace. When I drive out of ASP to go home, I get so bummed and say I can’t wait to go back. It is a countdown to the next time I go.
There is no excuse not to do this race other than it doesn’t fit into your race schedule. PITA is the most beautiful race I have ever done. All in all, I just absolutely LOVE this race. I look forward to it every year.
To find out more info about PAIN in the Alleganies please go to: http://paininthealleganies.com