What A Rush

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When a fully made-up Teri Hatcher found her spot in the athlete transition area at the Nautica Triathlon in Malibu on Sunday and proceeded to strip down to a black bikini and sports bra before pulling on her wet suit in front of a pack of photographers, I didn’t bat an eye. Then again, it was sometime before sunrise, and my eyes were hardly open.

Looking back, it was really an unglamorous moment—paparazzi and all. Hatcher said competing in the triathlon was on her “bucket list,” and here she was, no stunt double in sight, testing herself in a new way, live in front of a (mostly) studio audience (Disney, Warner Bros., Dreamworks, Summit Entertainment, Sony Pictures, Paramount Pictures, NBC Universal, and Lionsgate studios all participated in the triathlon’s entertainment industry fund-raising challenge.)

Still, it was a star-studded affair: Mario Lopez was there, flashing those AC Slater dimples as he biked, as was new mom Julie Bowen, Mathew Rhys and Luke MacFarlane (they competed on opposing Brothers & Sisters teams), Felicity Huffman and William H. Macy, Chris Harrison (who hung pre-race with former Bachelor Andy Baldwin), Sam Rubin, Sheriff Lee Baca, and Jeremy Piven (he ran for the “Iron Menches.”)

The triathlon wasn’t easy—it’s been days and I’m still sore from competing in a relay—but it was truly inspiring. The 3,000 participants who swam, biked, and ran raised over a million dollars for Children’s Hospital. That’s more than any race in the event’s 23-year history, and I can’t think of another fund-raiser that brings the entertainment industry and the greater L.A. community together in as meaningful a way without a rubber chicken dinner or silent auction.

Hatcher crossed the finish line in 2 hours, 6 minutes and 50 seconds, and can now cross completing a triathlon off her list. It’s staying on mine, though. It was worth the pain.