HAMMOND | Team in Training, a national fundraising campaign that was started 25 years ago, will have 25 athletes participating in Leon’s Triathlon on Sunday, June 2, as they continue their mission of raising money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
Team in Training participates in endurance events throughout the country. The organization has volunteer participants that train with coaches leading up to an event, all while raising money to support blood cancer research and patient services. One major event that Team in Training participates in is the Chicago Triathlon, but the organization enjoys the atmosphere of Leon’s Triathlon just the same.
“Team in Training always likes to try new events. We’ll try them if they’re local or if someone from our team has previously participated in the event and liked it,” said Jill Sklansky, triathlon and cycle team manager for the Illinois chapter of Team in Training, when asked how they became involved with Leon’s Triathlon.
According to Sklansky, Leon’s Triathlon was a good fit for their organization because it’s proven to be a high-quality, high-caliber local event.
“Personally, it’s a great event. Leon goes above and beyond,” stated Sklansky.
But according to Leon Wolek, founder of Leon’s Triathlon, participation by organizations such as Team in Training is what drives Leon’s Triathlon to be a sincere and organic experience for participants.
“These people are one of the driving forces in this country regarding such a sensitive issue. Cancer crosses all boundaries. Because they designate only so many events in North America, it’s very humbling to be in the position that we’re in,” said Wolek.
Leon’s Triathlon will have the mission and vision of Team in Training integrated in to the national broadcast of the event. The event will be telecast on Comcast SportsNet Chicago and its affiliates nationwide to more than 21 million households during Fourth of July weekend. With the addition of Team in Training’s branding, and fundraising, the event will raise both awareness and funds for the mission of the organization.
“To be in the same sentence as say, the Chicago Marathon, that is a very humbling experience,” said Wolek. “It hits you to the core because there are so many other events, we are just so very honored to be in this position, and we’ll do whatever we can to assist. It’s a humble ‘yes’ before the question is even asked.”
Team in Training estimates they will raise $50,000 by the athletes competing in Leon’s Triathlon.
“We’re really excited to go to Leon’s Triathlon, and so grateful,” said Sklansky.
According to Sklansky, Team in Training is a couch-to-finish line program. Volunteers train with the team twice a week, and have a personalized training schedule built by the coaches to utilize on participant’s own time. While there is no cost associated with participating, athletes are asked to raise four times the cost incurred for their participation in an event. Team in Training provides fundraising mentors and ideas as well as a personalized fundraising website to assist with the fundraising campaigns.
To learn more about Team in Training, visit www.teamintraining.org. To learn more about Leon’s Triathlon, visit www.leonstriathlon.com.