Pint-size participants are preparing for a big competition |

Pint-size participants are preparing for a big competition

by Maggie O'Neill
Appeal Staff Writer
BRAD HORN/Nevada Appeal Autumn Keith, 5, trains for the upcoming triathalon at Mills Park while her brother Josh, 8, performs a seat stand on Wednesday. Caleb, 10, the Keith's oldest child, will also compete in next month's event.

Autumn Keith is training for her second triathlon.

In a red bathing suit, bike helmet and water shoes, she rode her bike, practicing for the transition between events in her upcoming competition.

Known as bricks, these changeovers from cycling to running or from swimming to cycling in a triathlon are challenges worked on by triathletes just like the individual disciplines themselves.

“It’s a rather personal process,” said trainer Ray Henderson of the swimming to cycling brick. “I suggest putting the helmet on first and then the shoes.”

The bathing suit simply stays put.

“These races are about minimizing your time,” he said.

Throughout this week, Henderson, swim trainer Kurt Meyer and nutritionist Amy Bottenberg have worked with the triathletes to ensure they can make their division requirements.

For many of the competitors, working hard is nothing new, even with the intense heat. Henderson makes sure they drink lots of water.

“Go ahead and hydrate guys,” he told some of them as they returned from a bike ride on Wednesday.

Mitchell Rohr will compete in his second triathlon this August and was nonplused by the week of workouts.

“It’s helping me train,” he said. “I’d rather be doing something a little bit harder.”

For the 28 participants, the week has included trips to Carson High School’s track, laps at the Carson Aquatic Center, and bike rides on Mills Park’s Oxoby Loop.

And brick workouts.

“We kind of hit every sport every day for an evaluation,” said Scott Keith, Carson City Parks and Recreation supervisor. “It’s five days of full instruction with a professional coach.”

The cost for the department’s first-ever weeklong triathlon training was $125.

“The hope is to build fitness and to build a lifestyle where they’re more excited about riding a bike than playing video games,” Keith said.

Autumn, 5, came in fourth place last year in her division. At this year’s Capital City Kids’ Triathlon, she’ll need to swim 25 yards, bike eight-tenths of a mile and run nearly half a mile.

“When I run and I swim I get really tired,” she said. “But when I bike I’m on wheels. I go faster.”

When she gets out of the pool come Aug. 6, she will know to strap on her helmet, put on her shoes and start biking. And when she takes off, her white basket with purple trim on the front of her bike will race right along with her.

– Contact reporter Maggie O’Neill at or 881-1219.


What: Capital City Kids’ Triathlon

When: Aug. 6

Where: Carson Aquatic Facility/Mills Park

Registration: $10

Information: Call Parks and Recreation at 887-2290

Age groups: 4-6; 7-8; 9-10; 11-12; 13-14

• Each participant receives a T-shirt and every finisher a medal