I’m very sorry to hear about the cancer, but am glad to hear you’re doing a good job with the recovery so far. My prayers go out to you and your family for your continued well-being. Give ‘em hell coach. Nothing can keep down the big dog.
For years I had coached cross country and track at Waiakea High School and recently I had a chance to catch up with one of my former runners, Garrett DeLorm.
“When I was very young my grandfather told my parents that I was a natural runner,” DeLorm said. “He could tell by looking at my stride, form and overall effortless efficiency while I darted around the yard.”
Growing up in Hilo DeLorm dabbled in basketball and soccer while running took a back seat.
“I became more serious about soccer and stopped playing basketball in middle school,” DeLorm said.
DeLorm happened upon running during his freshman year at Waiakea when he joined the cross country team, why else? to get in shape for soccer.
“I soon realized that I was actually a much better runner than soccer player,” he said.
DeLorm’s grandfather was absolutely correct about Garrett’s ability to run. The youngster became quite a natural medaling in the league and state championships for both cross country and track.
In track DeLorm set the island record in the 800 meter run and went on to become the league champion, while finishing third in the state for that event.
In high school DeLorm was far more than a gifted athlete as he excelled in academics which paved the way to his attending the University of Notre Dame, graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration.
“I’m a Digital Producer at Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners,” he said. “It is an ad agency headquartered in Sausalito, California and I’ve been working there for five years.”
DeLorm not only continues to exercise daily but has become one of the most competitive athletes in the world of Triathlons.
“I live in San Francisco right near Golden Gate Park and have the pleasure of riding my bike over the Golden Gate Bridge every day to get to work,” DeLorm said. “I come back to Hilo once or twice a year, not enough if you ask me.”
DeLorm is a producer for a variety of digital needs and his clients have ranged from Mini USA, Columbia Sportswear, Priceline and Radio Shack to name just a few.
Adding to his busy career DeLorm has entered into one of the most demanding sports by becoming a triathlete.
“I need to balance three sports for my triathlon and on my non rest weeks I average between 15 to 23 hours of workouts,” he said. “Ironman races are very demanding as I put in numerous hours on the bike, in the pool and on the pavement running.”
During his short stay in Mountain View, while visiting his parents, DeLorm was looking for training partners to do an 80 to 100 mile bike ride and on another day an 18 to 20 mile run.
“My biggest goal right now is to finish Ironman New Zealand which is coming up during the first week in March,” he said.
DeLorm’s first Olympic and half-iron triathlons were his most memorable.
“Those first triathlons were memorable because they were big accomplishments over the distance,” DeLorm said. “Escape from Alcatraz was also a big one because it was the first race I fell in love with and part of the reason that I got into this sport.”
For DeLorm one of his biggest motivations to work out as hard as he does is his upcoming races.
“There is a lot of pressure not to hit the snooze button in the morning if I’ve got an upcoming race that I’m not sure I can finish,” DeLorm said. “Today I’m motivated by my upcoming Ironman in New Zealand. I know it will be a grueling race and that makes me want to forge ahead with my workout time.”
DeLorm’s biggest obstacle when it comes to eating and diet is that he may not be getting enough calories.
“The biggest thing is trying to eat enough calories each day to keep up with the amount I’m burning in my workouts,” he said. “I don’t limit myself unless it’s a few weeks before a big race, then I have a very strict plan of the basic things I eat.”
Prior to races DeLorm will eat lots of vegetables, protein while drinking lots of water.
“I will try to stay away from too much sugar and I take a multi vitamin and Glucosamine/Chondrotin for my joints, since this sport is so hard on them,” DeLorm said.
Why does DeLorm put himself through such grueling workouts?
“I’ve always been driven to individual performance based sports,” he said. “I enjoy the competitive nature of these sports along with how inherently introspective and truly personal they are.”
DeLorm has learned through his high school running days that once the starting gun goes off everything that follows is entirely up to him.
“Sports like cross country and track are team sports to some degree, but once the race begins your teammates can’t really help you run through the lactic acid build ups or in gathering enough strength to pass someone when everything in your body is telling you to slow down.”
DeLorm has now set his sights on the World Champion of all triathlons, the Kona Ironman.
“I’d love to do Kona as it would be great to have all of my friends and family who watched me race through high school be there to see me again in the grandest stage of all,” DeLorm said. “Although, knowing how difficult it is to qualify, I’m not sure I’m ready to devote that much time to training at this point in my life in order to be able to earn a slot.”
Garrett DeLorm at age 29 has already achieved quite a bit, graduating from a prominent university, landing a prestigious job and on his way to becoming a very competitive athlete in the world of triathlons.
When Garrett DeLorm does qualify for the Kona Ironman someday, he can count on his former high school cross country and track coach to be along the side lines on Alii Drive cheering him into the finish line.
And someday should you happen to see a beaming former high school cross country and track coach jogging around East Hawaii remember to smile, say “woof” and never shy away from “Running with the Big Dog.”