Hello and welcome to my website. My name is Barry Schultz, and I thought I would start by telling you a little bit about myself and how I became interested in triathlons.
I currently live and work in Cambridge, England. I am happily married to Jane and have been since 2007. We have been together for many years, and as of November 2011, we are the proud new parents of a beautiful little boy, Jacob. I was born and raised in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, where I went to school and learned to swim among a limited few other things .
Now, the great thing about growing up in a place like Bulawayo is that I was lucky enough to be raised in a house that had a massive garden, and a fair sized swimming pool. With the long hot summers in Zimbabwe, I spent far too much of my time running around one and splashing about in the other instead of doing homework.
I currently work as a postman (in a sorting office, not the type that comes to your door) and have been for just over ten years now. I am also studying part time towards a BSc in Computing with the Open University. I have always been fascinated by computers and figure it’s got to be a more exciting way to spend the day than spending eight hours sorting other peoples’ mail. That is another reason for creating this website, as it allows me to talk about and discuss the different aspects of triathlon as well as allowing me to use my knowledge and love for computing.
I have always been quite keen on sports, and in particular, swimming. I swam for a club in my youth and was reasonably good. My best performances came in a year in which I won three gold and two bronze medals at the Junior National Short Course Championships (I think it was in 1991). Then for some reason that I have never truly understood, I packed it all in. I guess girls and going out on the town became all-consuming to me! I still swam in school inter-house galas and stuff like that but never competed at the national level again. In high school I also played rugby, which I think I was OK at, but to be perfectly honest, I’m not too sure about that. Anyway, I was always selected to play on the A team for my age group.
I was also once the guitarist in a band (but I think it best we never mention that again, OK?).
I have been training with a masters club in Cambridge since about July 2010, which is great. The club provides plenty of banter and an atmosphere in which I feel driven to push myself to the limits (some of the time anyway). Well that’s probably enough about me for now or there would be no need for any other pages or posts on this site.
About this site
As I mentioned in the About me section above I am a very keen swimmer. Over the last couple of years I have been getting more and more interested in triathlon. I have now finally reached the point where I have convinced myself that I want to do one. There is a lot of information out there about the sport of triathlon and each of the individual disciplines. You see, this has become one of the main motivations to build this site, as the abundance of information is at the very heart of my problem; information overload!
Triathletes are very knowledgeable people. They need to be after all, as they are competing in three different disciplines all at once. The only problem that I found with this is that this knowledge makes it very hard for them to offer advice to a beginner like myself without a war of opinions breaking out. This is not very helpful to say the least, but it’s also a little intimidating because they invariably start to argue about the most insanely technical stuff like group sets (whatever they are – I promise, I will eventually find out and let you know). This may seem a little unfair on these forum contributors, but I have come across it too many times now.
So I decided to put this site up as it will bring some of the things I love, and some of the things I want to learn as much as possible about, together in one place. I do love and am currently studying computing and thought this site would be an excellent place to put some of the skills I have learned to use in a way that may actually be useful to others. I also am on a mission to learn as much as I can about triathlon, and will be putting everything I learn and all the experience I gain on this site. I just hope that you find some information that is useful to you.
Well, the decision to build this site using the WordPress platform was not one made purely out of laziness, although it does make things SO much easier. I chose to do things this way because I thought it would help me to learn php. You see, not once in any of the two and a half billion courses that make up my degree have we covered php. I know, it’s crazy!
It seems that the guys that designed the degree preferred Java Server Pages (JSP) to php and that’s what I got stuck with. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed learning all the JSP stuff, but it just seems like a bit of an oversight, and a gap in my education that I need to rectify. So that is why I am doing things the way I am. Once I have enough of an understanding of the technology, I will be replacing this theme with one I will develop myself. Or, I may switch back to coding things myself using some combination of html, php, jQuery and anything else I can learn.