At ACTIVE Network, our mission has always remained the same: Make the world a more active place. And we are so fortunate to have employees that practice what we preach.

After months and months of intense training, a group of ACTIVE employees packed up and headed down to Galveston this past weekend for IRONMAN 70.3 Texas—a triathlon consisting of a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike and 13.1-mile run—some to participate and some just to cheer on their fellow coworkers.

While the weather was less than ideal, no one let it dampen the mood.

“The weather got pretty bad, but the IRONMAN team did an amazing job notifying participants and making sure everyone stayed safe,” Remi Williamson, ACTIVE Network account manager, says. “And despite the horrible conditions, everyone still had such great energy.”

At one point during the race, participants had to hide out in a parking garage because the conditions got so intense.

“An IRONMAN turned into a Tough Mudder,” Emily Ali, ACTIVE Network account executive, says. “It was still so much fun though. It’s always such a huge sense of accomplishment with the time and energy that’s put into training.”

Emily Ali and her pup Dexter exploring IRONMAN Village

Ali has done 3 IRONMAN events and says the sense of accomplishment after months of grueling training is unbeatable. She says eventually you just reach a point where your body goes numb and you can do things you never imagined.

“I would really encourage people to try anything once. It’s such an amazing thing to achieve; it’s mind over matter.”

For Chris Quinonez, an account manager at ACTIVE Network, it was his first time participating in a triathlon event. In fact, he only started running a little over a year ago.

“It was a combination of coworkers that had done it before that got me into running first,” Quinonez says. “I saw them do a couple of events and started wondering if I could do the same.”

When Quinonez first started running, making it just 4 miles was tough. He says he thought running just wasn’t for him, but regardless he kept training and working toward his goal.

He says the biggest factor for him was having coworkers to push him through his training and to help him with the nutrition side of things.

“It’s predominantly a mental game. I think most people don’t realize the ability that their bodies have until they break through,” he says. “When you think you’ve reached your absolute limit and you push through that wall to keep going, it’s just such an energizing force.”

Chris Quinonez pushing through the running portion

During the swimming portion of the event, he got a bad leg cramp and was worried he would have to stop. All it took was thinking about how hard he had worked to get to this point, and all his friends there cheering him on, to push through.

Ultimately, many participants were unable to finish because the event got called due to weather. But it certainly won’t be the last event for these employees, and they highly encourage others to give it a try too.

“Run your race, whatever that may look like,” Williamson says. “It’s personal for why people do it. Have a blast with it and don’t take it too seriously. Find a group of people who will train with you and support you, I know I’m so grateful to have coworkers who do that for me.”