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Triathlete from Utah is here to swim, run, bike

jeff@samoanews.com
Matt Bracken who has been coming to Am. Samoa since March of last year to fit people with prosthetics encourages exercise for fitness, and to emphasize that, he will complete a full Olympic distance Triathlon this coming Saturday beginning at Utulei Beach at 8am. [photo: Jeff Hayner]

Matt Bracken from Cedar City, Utah will be participating in a full Olympic distance Triathalon on Tutuila this coming Saturday and he hopes others will join him. 
 
Braken, who comes to American Samoa periodically to fit people for prosthetic devices is aware that a large portion of his patients are diabetic and one way to combat diabetes is through exercise.
 
“We have met with a lot of people here that have major health issues because of diabetes and I am very concerned about that,” he said. He stated that his mother is diabetic and that’s a warning sign for him to control his diet and to exercise daily.
 
 “One of the things that I have done to exercise is that I have gotten involved with Triathlons. This coming Saturday, I will be doing a full Olympic distance Triathlon which is a one mile swim, a 22-24 mile bike ride and then a six mile run. I want to have as many people as possible come out to swim with me, bike with me or run with me on Saturday. Later, I would like to see people do the whole Triathlon with me,” he explained.
 
He learned that not many people in the territory know how to swim correctly and encourages people to learn how for health purposes—  "It's great exercise."
 
 He also hopes that someday more people will participate in the Triathlon with him here in the territory.
 
“I would like people from here in American Samoa to not only be able to do the Triathlon with me someday, but to beat me,” he said.
 
The route of the Triathlon will begin at Utulei Beach Park at 7 a.m. where the one-mile swim will take place. After the swim, he will bike around the bay up to the village of Lauli’i, then make a U-turn and bike all of the way back to the Veterans Memorial Stadium.
 
From the stadium, Bracken will then start running up towards Leone and double back to Nu’uuli to Letani Square, near the Shoe Tree where the run will end.
 
“I am hoping I can get some of my patients to walk some of the last part with me,” he said.
 
Representing his company, Samoa Prosthetics, Bracken has been coming to the territory since March of last year fitting as many people as possible with prosthetic devices, along with his local partner Joe Tavale of Pago Pago.
 
For more information on Samoa Prosthetics or the Saturday Triathlon, you can call 256-0362.
 



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