A Fairfax Station father and son team are training for a major triathlon this fall to help raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
“It’s a good opportunity to get into shape, meet interesting people and devote yourself to a good cause,” said Theo Adams, who is following in his father’s footsteps and training for his first race.
His father, Ted Adams, has already been involved in several triathlons in the last two years as part of the Team in Training program for the lymphoma society. The training group is for those training to participate in athletic events to raise money for cancer research.
“My motivation for doing this was to raise money in honor of my dad,” Ted Adams, 47, said. His father, Theodore Adams, died of blood cancer in 2003.
When Ted Adams first completed the national triathlon last year, he had not participated in an endurance sport before, but had played semi-pro soccer in his past.
“When I was in the Team in Training organization, I just got hooked,” Adams said. The first year, he helped raise $2,900 for the lymphoma society.
He proceeded to complete another triathlon in Hawaii and another in Florida. His son Theo volunteered at the Hawaii event earlier this year, which he said inspired him to also get involved.
“I went to volunteer and met a lot of cool people like leukemia survivors,” Theo Adams, 18, said. He is a college student at Santa Clara University in California.
The news that his son would be competing was a pleasant surprise for his father.
“When he said he was going to do it, I was completely blown away,” Ted Adams said. “I was really touched. My dad passed away when my son was 11. He knew him as well as he could.”
His son started the workout routine and was in for quite a shock to the system. The routine includes 4.5 to 9 hours a week of swimming, biking, and running.
“I never really worked out before so I’m starting out new,” Theo Adams said. “It’s pretty rigorous, I’m not going to lie because working out is working out, but it’s starting to get fluid. It’s a great opportunity though.”
“I watched my dad in the entire process and he has gotten ripped in the last few years and if he can do it I can do it,” Theo Adams said.
The triathlon itself takes place on Sept. 9. About 100 others in Northern Virginia are on the same Team in Training program as the Adamses. It includes a mile swim in the Potomac, a 26-mile bike ride, and a 6.2-mile run.
Both agree that their favorite part about competing in the event is meeting the other team members, which includes cancer survivors, family members and doctors.
“I didn’t realize how well-informed my teammates were about different things,” Ted Adams said. “It’s really what you bring to it.”
“For people thinking about doing this? The answer is they probably can if they give it a shot,” Ted Adams said. “But it’s a challenge, I’m not saying it’s easy.”