Sunday, February 7, 2010


(WARNING: Much of what you are about to read in this "Going Off-Course" feature is nonsense.)

Lawyers work long hours. And triathletes spend many hours training. Guys like Darin Wieneke, who is a lawyer and a triathlete, simply don't sleep. Power naps at the office or on the trainer (power napping in the pool is discouraged!) rarely last more than 10-15 seconds.

How do hard-driving, sleep-deprived guys like Darin handle the rigors of their lifestyle?


Darin has always been a hard worker and a light sleeper. As a young boy growing up on a farm near bucolic Adrian, MN (population 9), a typical day consisted of finishing his evening meal, the one called "supper,"watching one "L.A. Law" rerun on the family's 8" black and white Zenith, doing his homework then heading to the barn where he would shovel cow pies until 4 AM. He would then milk 7000 cows and "slop" 8000 hogs. (Nobody really knows what "hog slopping" is, do they?) He would then walk 12 miles through the snow to Adrian's one-room schoolhouse, where he studied reeding, riting, rithmetick and the history of hog slopping in America. Then, of course, he walked home (in even deeper snow), had dinner, usually ham or pork chops, watched a rerun of... You get the picture. Darin was doomed to a life of hard work and minimal sleep. Naturally, the unreasonable demands of the multisport lifestyle appealed to the young Red Bull-swilling attorney, who has spent all of his post-farming years in the Twin Cities.

And here's some other stuff --he's eats octopuses, you know!--you probably don't know about Triathlete/Lawyer/truly cool guy Darin Wieneke:

1. Occupation: Personal Injury Attorney

2. Education: J.D. from University of Minnesota School of Law, B.A. in Political Science and Business Management from Hamline University

3. Upbringing: Grew up on a farm near Adrian, Minnesota where I spent much of my youth cleaning manure (see cow pie) from hog and cattle pens. Lake Nokomis in mid-August still seems like a crystal clear oasis to me.

4. Family: My wife, Maria Vu, is a family practice doctor in St. Paul.

5. Favorite Food: Anything Maria makes which can be adventurous at times. Fortunately, I am willing to try anything once, including octopus. (See gruesome photo above)

6. Favorite Junk Food: French fries, cheese curds and almost anything served at the Minnesota State Fair. (See fried Twinkie photo)

7. Favorite Ice Cream: Pavoratti (caramel, banana and chocolate chip) from Sebastian Joe's.

8. Favorite Restaurants: The Highland Grill and Punch Pizza are my favorite neighborhood spots. If you want a great steak, the Porcini Rubbed Delmonico with 12-Year Aged Balsamic at Capitol Grille is ridiculous. In regard to the best burger debate, The Blue Door Pub and The 5-8 Club offer outstanding juicy lucy burgers.

9. Favorite Books: The Old Man and the Sea and Life of Pi are two of my favorites

10. Favorite Movies: Avatar, The Hurt Locker, and Sherlock Holmes were all solid movies that I recently watched. 300 and Fight Club are two of my all-time favorite.

11. Favorite T.V. Shows: If I had cable and watched television, I think they would be anything on Comedy Central and ESPN College Football Gameday.

12. Favorite Alcoholic Beverages: Anything with Red Bull in it or brewed in New Ulm.

13. Favorite Non-Alcoholic Beverages: Red Bull, Gatorade, and water.

14. Favorite College Teams: Hamline Pipers and Minnesota Golden Gophers!

15. Favorite T-Shirts: 2005 Minneman (my first triathlon) and The Flash (superhero) t-shirts.

Darin is going to be a frequent contributor to Minnesota Triathlon News. In addition to posting triathlon safety articles, he will be answering a legal question of the month. Please send him an e-mail at if you have a triathlon-related legal question that you would like him to address.