NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

August 27, 2013

Blood, sweat and cheers

Amesbury woman will compete at triathlon world championships

The Rev. Lucy Blood had never run a triathlon two years ago. Since then, she has run nine.

“Every time I finish, it’s a celebration,” said Blood, 62. “Wow, I did it again. Look at that.”

The Amesbury resident and former minister of the Union Congregational Church has spent much of her life as an eighth-grade special education case manager at the Timberlane Regional Middle School in Plaistow, N.H. She is now taking her experience to London next month as a part of Team USA at the International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Sprint Championship.

“Two years ago in September, I decided to follow one of the sayings that I have, which is ‘Dare to dream dreams, and make them true,’” said Blood.

Blood will be competing in the Sprint Distance World Championships at Hyde Park in the 60-64 age bracket. The triathlon itself will consist of a one-half-mile swim followed by 12.4-mile bike race and a 5K run on Sept. 13. She got the idea of doing a triathlon while watching her wife, Debbie, run one in 2011.

“I figured, if I was going to do that, I was going to have to start jogging,” Blood said. “I found a couch to 5K (program), and I got up to the point where I could actually jog an entire 5K. So, a year later, I went out for the US Championship.”

The top 18 qualifiers in the US Championships in each age bracket get an invitation to be part of Team USA at the World Championships the following year. Blood finished 22nd in her age group last August, making her eligible to become an alternate.

“First I thought, ‘I have to get a passport,’” said Blood. “And I didn’t have a passport. Then I had to check with my school to make sure that I had time. They told me that I definitely had to go, and the last thing was keeping up the training to make sure that I was ready for it.”

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