Participants spotlight

Triathlete Hector Picard turns disability into a way to help others

 

Special to the Miami Herald

Hector Picard is a double-arm amputee who has turned his disability into a means of helping others and this past month in the Tri for BCC Kids he helped raise more than $10,000 for the Broward Children’s Center.

Picard is a proven triathlete who has become an inspiration to many people living with disabilities and without.

His efforts go far beyond any finish line, this past month in the Tri for BCC he went over 250 miles during his combined swim, bike and run to raise money for the center.

The five-mile swim, 200-mile bike and a 50-mile run was all to help the Broward County nonprofit, which has helped to provide education, along with medical and living services for those with special health-care needs for more than 40 years.

Picard’s mission is far from over. He will continue his efforts to raise funds for the center on July 12, when he attempts to do double iron-distance in the “300 Miles in 24 Hours for BCC Kids.’’

Going the distance is nothing new for this endurance athlete. Among one of his biggest feats happened last year when he attempted to cycle cross-country in 30 days.

The trip that took him from Miami to Spokane, Washington, to raise money for Hands for Baby Jameson Davis. It actually took him 36 days to get about 3,100 miles, but his charitable journey helped to raise more than $20,000 to get a toddler prosthetic arms since he was born without any.

Picard is also a motivational speaker and travels across the country, spreading his message of “Don’t Stop Living,’’ which is also the name of the website www.dontstopliving.org.

One thing he does to show people that you can do anything you put your mind to is special video that he calls “Changing a Flat Without Hands’’ — showing how he can overcome changing a bike tire with no hands.

If you are interested in helping this triathlete continue his charitable missions. you can find more information by visiting www.bcckids.org.

UPCOMING

The 24th annual Independence Day Duathlon and Triathlon returns to the Tradewinds Park in Coconut Creek.

“The race is a fun way to start celebrating the long weekend with triathlete friends, and short enough to give you the rest of the day to enjoy with other friends and family,” local triathlete Isabel Olivas said. “The event itself is great for all level athletes, and it is very beginner-friendly.”

This triathlon features a closed course on cycling and running portions, and the swim is a quarter-mile in the Tradewinds’ lake — which is flat, waveless and has no current, so it makes for an easy swim.

The duathletes will start with a .75-mile run instead of the quarter-mile swim.

The bike course makes two loops around the south and north ends of Tradewinds Park for a total of 10 miles. The run course is on the path adjacent to the lake where the athletes will have to complete two laps to finish the three-mile course.

To register, visit: www.july4thtriathlon.com

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