There are numerous sports events and activities in the Cayman Islands for those who want to stick to their New Year’s resolutions. It’s that time when the festive season excesses give way to healthier recreation.
The ever-popular Wednesday Night Running Club never took a break over the holiday period, and the next meetup is on Jan. 7 at its usual place, the World Gym behind Queensgate Plaza, at 6 p.m.
There is a free Tai Chi session this Sunday at the Crescent in Camana Bay from 8:30-9:15 a.m. with Sensei Greg Reid. The session continues every Sunday at the same time and place.
It is Spinning Wellness Week at Revolutions on Huldah Avenue, opposite Smith Road Oval cricket ground. Revolutions sponsored a water stop at last month’s Intertrust Cayman Islands Marathon.
Revolutions were judged the best water stop by the runners and were given six plane tickets by Cayman Airways and the entire water stop crew of 30 graciously agreed to offer them to people in need of medical treatment to get to Miami.
Every runner and walker from the Cayman Marathon is entitled to a free Revolutions spinning class before Jan. 31.
It will be time to make a splash in the Care Pharmacy 200 meter and 400m Sea Swim on Jan. 10.
Cross country running is introduced through Derek Larner’s 3.5-mile event around North Sound Golf Club on Jan. 10.
A day later, the Walk and Wag 5K charity event is staged in Camana Bay.
Another short distance run and walk goes around the Holiday Inn, the Family Colour 1-5K, on Jan. 17. The Milestone Charity 5K and 10K run and walk are also on that day.
For the super-fit, the latest Mercuryman Triathlon is in East End on Jan. 18 at The Reef Resort.
The 2015 Mercuryman half-iron distance triathlon, the only one of its kind in Cayman, will test athletes in a grueling 1.2-mile swim, a 56-mile bike race and a 13.1-mile run.
Attendance has been high in the past with more than 150 participants, including triathlon pros American Lisa Ribes last year, Pedro Gomes from Portugal and American Lesley Smith in 2013.
Organizers expect to attract Ribes, Gomes – now an Ironman champion – and Smith back to participate, as well as Canadian triathlete Angela Naeth, a 10-time 70.3 Ironman Champion renowned for her prowess on the bike.
Other big names expected include Bree Wee, 70.3 and Ironman champion from Hawaii, Leanda Cave, the 2012 Ironman Triathlon and Ironman 70.3 world champion and the first woman in the sport’s history to win both titles in the same year.
Kim Schwabenbauer is entered. She is a triathlon coach and dietitian who has several podium finishes in Ironman and has competed multiple times in the Ironman World Champion.
Canadian triathlete Jennifer Lentzke is new to the professional circuit. She achieved multiple top 10 finishes in the 2014 season and is looking forward to competing here.
Race director Trevor Murphy said this event is set to be huge. “Mercuryman triathlon has attracted some of the biggest names in the sport because we offer an excellent location in which to participate,” he said.
“Triathletes can enjoy Cayman’s pleasant tropical climate, clear and warm waters, good roads for cycling and running and an all-round excellent destination which athletes and their families can enjoy during their post-race vacation.”
Dubbed “Race for a Cause,” the organizers have pledged the bulk of the proceeds to the Estella Scotts Roberts Foundation, along with a donation to East End Primary School.
Murphy said it is important for the event to give back to the community.
“The 2015 Mercuryman promises to be one of the sporting highlights of the year for not only the Cayman Islands, but the Caribbean region,” he said.
“It means we are able to spotlight the ESRF to a wide audience, an organization that promotes gender equality and a life free of violence, for all, an extremely worthwhile cause.
“In addition, the race will take place in the East End, so we couldn’t think of a better recipient of some of the proceeds than East End Primary School, which has been a part of the event since its inception.
“The children volunteer on the run course, interacting with the athletes, and see first-hand the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.
“The organizers also visit the school each year.”
Toward the end of the month, golfers get a chance to get into the swing of things in the Eric Crutchley Memorial tournament (Jan. 23), before the Stride Against Cancer (Jan. 25).
Tersh Broderick’s next Maxathon (multiple ball sports workout) is on Jan. 25 at the Arts and Recreation Centre in Camana Bay, and then it’s the Pete Ribbins Memorial Swim Meet (Jan. 29).
The ever-expanding Cross Island Relay is on Feb. 1, and record numbers are expected.