Mel Korum Family YMCA
When a friend of Darian’s invited him to try running a half marathon, he wasn’t sure he liked endurance sports. A high school and college athlete, Darian was used to playing team sports, but after finishing his first race, he was hooked. By the time he finished his second half marathon, he was craving a new challenge.
So, Darian started training for a half-Ironman Triathlon. He found support at the Mel Korum Family YMCA in Puyallup where personal trainer Ruth Perkins helped him improve his swim, bike, and run times.
“I’m the type of person where if I’m gonna do it, I’m gonna do it a million percent,” says Darian.
Darian loved competing, but he always felt miserable after a race. He suspected that his diet was to blame. So, Ruth referred him to Sports and Wellness dietician Lisa Lovejoy at the MultiCare Center for Healthy Living.
“I call myself a performance nutritionist. I help people use what they eat to perform their best,” says Lisa. She works with a wide variety of clients, from high-level athletes to office workers to help them reach their goals through diet and nutrition.
Working with Lisa, Darian completed a body composition assessment, which included finding out his total body fat percentage and resting metabolic rate, and nutrition counseling. By cutting out alcohol, reducing the amount of sugar and processed foods he ate, and adding more plants to his diet, Darian began to feel better after exercising.
“I still eat everything I did before, I just do it way less and eat tons of fruits and vegetables,” Darian said.
There wasn’t a defining moment, but those small changes had a massive impact on his performance. In his most recent triathlon, he was able to shave 20 minutes off of his swimming time. Now, he has his sights set on a full-distance Ironman — a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride, and 26.22-mile run.
“With endurance sports, there’s never an end to it,” Darian says. “You accomplish one thing and there’s always something else to be done.
The partnership between MultiCare and the Y enables athletes like Darian to benefit from personal training and nutrition counseling to be able to perform at their best. YMCA members even receive a 20% discount on sports nutrition services. Learn more at multicare.org/sports-nutrition.