USA Triathlon News Articles Best (And Worst) of ...

Best (And Worst) of 2020: Stepping Up, Overcoming Adversity and Finding New Perspective

By Nick Hehemann, USA Triathlon | Dec. 22, 2020, 6 p.m. (ET)

For reasons good and bad, 2020 is a year we won’t be forgetting any time soon. And not just because it felt more like a decade.


We thought it’d be good, and maybe even therapeutic, to look back and reflect on the year that was.


Now through the New Year, we’re sharing the best (and worst) in the world of triathlon in 2020. What we’ve found is that even in the midst of a difficult year, our community continues to inspire, support one another and create positive change.


First — here’s a look at the challenges our community faced in 2020, and how ordinary athletes stepped up, adjusted on the fly, overcame adversity and found new perspective.


Revealing Heroes in our Sport


The most challenging of times brought to light the real heroes in our community. So many age group triathletes around the country are also nurses, doctors and health care workers who stepped up to the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic — working tirelessly to care for the sick and save lives. We’re thankful for the incredible work they do to keep us safe.


Earlier this year, we caught up with some of these health care workers who are part of our multisport family. Read their stories here.


Staying Active in Quarantine


Nothing stops a dedicated triathlete. When events were canceled, we went on social media and asked our triathletes how they were staying active while in quarantine. The reaction we got did not disappoint.


So many of you sent us videos and photos of you swimming, biking, running and even holding entire races at your home. It was a real bright spot for us during a difficult period, and we’re thankful our athletes could bring some fun and lighthearted content to our audience. You can see all the best videos with the link below.



CCNC From Home


Our collegiate club teams took the race at home theme to a whole new and hilarious level. When the USA Triathlon Collegiate Club National Championships got postponed, athletes and collegiate club teams turned their competitive spirit into creativity. They swam in bathtubs, made at-home finish lines and held their own, unique indoor triathlons — featuring food and Netflix.


We teamed up with our partner, KT Tape, to hand out prizes to the most creative submissions. You can watch them all here.


Kids Tri at Home


Parents of young kids . So, USA Triathlon staff members, as well as coaches from around the country, came together to help kids have fun and stay active with the Kids Tri At Home workout video series.


Watch the complete playlist with the link below.




Virtual Racing


The love of competition and a fun challenge didn’t go away for triathletes in 2020. Virtual racing became a lot more popular this year after many in-person events around the country were postponed or canceled due to the pandemic.


Athletes continued to swim, bike and run virtually — even joining forces to cover the distance across the country in our Power Within Virtual Tri Across America, presented by Toyota.


Displays of Unity


The continued plague of racial inequality and systemic racism was at the forefront of the national conversation in 2020 after the tragic deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and so many others.


Our nation has a long way to go toward healing, yet we were encouraged by the displays of unity and actions for change we saw from so many in the multisport family. Let’s continue to come together to fight for justice and equality, because together we thrive.


If you’d like to get involved in our efforts to promote diversity, equity, inclusivity and accessibility in our community, please click here.



Supporting One Other


The worst in 2020 brought out the best in the multisport community. Through the USA Triathlon Foundation COVID-19 Relief Fund, our members came together to help raise over $200,000 this year for coaches, race directors, officials and others in the endurance space who had been financially impacted by the pandemic.  


A New Perspective


This year taught us a lot about overcoming adversity. It also taught us to find a new perspective when times get tough.


Elite U.S. Paratriathlete and 2016 Paralympic Silver Medalist Hailey Danz captured the spirit of so many triathletes with her Instagram post reflecting back on the chaotic year that was 2020. Sometimes, challenges can actually bring out the best in us.



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