Science teachers test their toughness in triathlons

Hannum in Escape from Alcatraz triathlon

Physics teacher Mark Hannum completes the 18 mile bike segment of the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon on June 10.

Kennedy in EagleMan triathlon
Chemical analysis lab director Brian Kennedy bikes 56 miles in the Ironman 70.3 EagleMan triathlon on June 10.

Physics teacher Mark Hannum and Chemical Analysis lab director Brian Kennedy spent June 10 competing in a triathlon each, but on opposite coasts of the country.

Hannum participated in the 32nd annual Escape from Alcatraz triathlon in the San Francisco Bay Area in California. This race began in the San Francisco Bay with a 1.5 mile swim off of Alcatraz Island, continued to an 18 mile bike ride and concluded at the finish line after an eight mile run.

“The hardest part was definitely the biking for me. I was really unprepared for how hilly it was,” Hannum said.

Hannum finished the triathlon with a total time of three hours, 59 minutes and 35 seconds, making him the 1,417th race finisher out of 1,713 total participants.

“I was looking for a unique challenge and that particular race is very unique,” Hannum said. “There’s no other like it.”

Back in Cambridge, Md., Kennedy competed in the Ironman 70.3 EagleMan triathlon, a half Ironman that puts athletes through 1.2 miles of swimming, 56 miles of biking and 13.1 miles of running. He pursued the race for personal reasons.

“I like doing lots of exercise and staying healthy,” Kennedy said.

Kennedy placed 685th out of 1,739 total participants with a time of 5 hours, 39 minutes and eight seconds. When he reached the finish line, the physical tolls of the race set in.

“I was thoroughly tired and sore and hungry,” Kennedy said.