Women Who Tri: A Reluctant Athlete's Journey Into the Heart of America's Newest Obsession
What would you do if half your town caught triathlon mania?
If you're like Alicia DiFabio--a minivan-driving, harried mother of four small children whose daily look features stained yoga pants, a messy ponytail, and a big diaper bag--you would shrug your shoulders and try to hold on for that after-bedtime glass of wine. It was to her utter surprise that this middle-aged, out-of-shape mother found herself on the starting line of a triathlon.
In Women Who Tri, DiFabio explores the triathlon phenomenon that has gripped her town and swept the nation.
Her memoir is both inspiring and informative as it explores the popularity, psychology, subculture, and transformative power of triathlons among "ordinary" women. Set in a small New Jersey town that now hosts America's largest women-only triathlon club, Women Who Tri weaves together the insights of a psychologist, the research of a journalist, and the deep insecurities of a daunted newbie.
DiFabio shares her journey from nervous newcomer to triathlon finisher as she investigates one of the world's most challenging and inspiring sports. She profiles women who have overcome challenges to become athletes and tri for themselves and to help others. Women Who Tri will entertain, enlighten, and inspire any triathlon enthusiast, from tri-addicts to the tri-curious.
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About the Author
Alicia DiFabio, Psy.D. finished her first triathlon at age 45. She is a member of the 900-woman strong Mullica Hill Women's Tri Club and a member of its board of directors. DiFabio has a doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Loyola University Maryland. On hiatus from the practice of psychology to raise her four young children, she writes on health and wellness, women's issues, parenting, and education for newspapers, magazines, and literary journals. She is a contributing editor of the literary magazine, Pentimento. An active blogger, Dr. DiFabio chronicles her adventures as a special needs mother to four children, one who has been diagnosed with autism and epilepsy. Her blog, Lost in Holland, has been featured in the Examiner.com, a network serving over 20 million monthly readers and her posts have been picked up for syndication by McClatchy Tribune.
"Alicia's courage, strength, and perseverance, along with all the women who tri, will bring tears of joy to your eyes and make you realize that, in overcoming your fears, anyone can achieve the impossible." --Barbara Mockford, author of An Unshakable Belief: Keeping the Ironman Dream
"A refreshing perspective! Alicia DiFabio's personal accounts of discovering and falling in love with the community of triathlon are endearing, humorous, and unique. The women highlighted in this book are not only inspiring, but also are amazing examples of how the sport of triathlon emboldens them to confront life's curveballs. Whether you are a seasoned athlete or just a curious bystander, you will feel a sense of sisterhood while swimming, biking, and running alongside the women Mullica Hill Women's Tri Club." -- Debra Hodgett, author of Tri-Mom: Swimming, Biking and Running Through Motherhood
"Greatly informative, exceptionally written with professional forethought and personal vulnerability, Women Who Tri is a beautiful tribute to 'those girls in pink' and women everywhere who are happily, imperfectly, honestly tri'ing." --Jennifer J.J. Cannon, author of @Sophie Takes a #Selfie, contributor to Good Day Philadelphia, and creator of the #DontShowMe cyberbullying campaign
"When Alicia DiFabio moved into the epicenter of a Triathastorm, her first instinct was to flee. Instead, she plunged in and now she's even written a book, Women Who Tri. In these pages, the story of her reluctance turned tri-celebration is interwoven with others' inspiring journeys, spiced with choice tidbits of practical advice and delicious morsels of tri-history, all delivered with light humor and some delightful, invented triathaspeak." -- Mina Samuels, author of Run Like a Girl: How Strong Women Make Happy Lives
"This is a well-researched memoir by a middle-aged mother of four (including a special-needs child) who reluctantly signs up and finishes her first triathlon despite pre-event dread and tears...DiFabio shares her journey into this athletic sorority, introducing readers to the sport's history and topics ranging from equipment costs to successful fund-raising for charities." -- Booklist, American Library Association
"Alicia DiFabio, mother of four, admittedly out of shape (before her first triathlon), explores the history, subculture, and psychological appeal of triathlons in this engaging memoir." -- Foreword