When Scott Goodrich first considered competing in triathlon competitions, there was one hitch. He couldn’t swim.
Well, actually he could swim, but not well. So at age 40, Goodrich learned.
“I knew how to swim to save myself, but I had never swam laps,” Goodrich, now 44, said.
It turned out that learning to swim laps presented Goodrich with another opportunity to normalize a common Ironman occurrence: failure. Goodrich, who played soccer in college and ran cross-country his freshman year, was used to the athletic lifestyle and the grind and disappointments of sports, but learning to swim was “riddled with constant failure,” Goodrich said.
Goodrich, the director of finance and accounting with the Port of Vancouver, would often struggle to get from one end of the pool to the other without stopping during those early lessons. “Fail and fail often,” is one way Goodrich describes his approach as an Ironman competitor, one who has failed his way from a novice swimmer to a successful triathlete and Ironman competitor. He finished in the top 10 percent of his Ironman age group nationally this year.
An Ironman triathlon consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bicycle ride and 26.22-mile footrace, in that order. It’s considered one of the most difficult one-day sporting events.