Christopher Walden makes goals a way of life. Many of us make unrealistic goals and when we don’t reach them, we give up on goals. Christopher’s secret is to start with smaller, shorter goals. Re-Imagine what you can do with a new approach to goals!
Christopher’s 2016 goal is to qualify for the Ironman 70.3 World Championships. He needs to place 1st in his age group in a Ironman 70.3 qualifier, then he’s on to the Ironman 70.3 World Triathlon Championships! Earlier this year, he qualified for the ITU World Championships in the Olympic distance and will compete in Cozumel, MX next fall. When we spoke to the devoted triathlete he was on his way to Palm Springs for a Half Ironman, where he placed 1st in his age group and 6th overall. He laughed, “A body in motion stays in motion.”
And, a body at rest stays at rest. After a swimming career which included a scholarship at Cal State University at Northridge, Christopher took about a 10 year break. He put on a bit more weight than he was comfortable with and took action, “I started by just walking and then jogging a mile. I had terrible shin splints, but I kept going.” Christopher did his first triathlon in 2008. Today training is a lifestyle and a release for Christopher with masters swimming 3 times a week at the Mission Valley YMCA, running track workouts with the Invictus Endurance Team and San Diego Track Club, and rides with the Tri Club of San Diego on Saturdays.
What advice do you have for someone interested in triathlon? “Sign up for a race, begin with small, short goals. Train by doing each stage of the race 1-2 times a week. Don’t worry about equipment; use a beach cruiser if you have to!” What about transitions? “Watch a video, seriously, I have to remind myself sometimes that this isn’t the Olympics.” Maybe not, but we’re impressed. Christopher’s goal system has taken him to the top 1% of the country! Remember, start with a realistic goal, reach it, feel great, make another, Repeat!
• He has the fastest time in the country for the 400m IM in the 35-39 age group.
• One of Christopher’s many mantras for good form and attitude throughout races: “Patience, Perseverance, and Integrity.”
• Christopher typically runs tempo10Ks at Balboa Park and Lake Murray.
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