…this is a long one.
So I decided to do the tri. Once I had decided I felt really good about my choice even though it really consumed most of my weekend. I will spare you the packet pick-up details and start with race day.
For triathlons you have a swim cap that corresponds with your wave. I had a light blue cap and was wave 21 with a start time of 8:09 A.M. The race started at 6:45 AM. All racers must get to the race prior to the race start time regardless of your wave time. This is so you can set up your bike and transition area because once the race starts the transition area is supposed to be closed. I got there around 6:30 AM and set up my stuff. Here is a picture of my transition (or my pile of stuff):
I did straighten it up a bit before I headed down to the water.
Here I am looking confused. Maybe I was trying to figure out the best way to set up my transition.
Once I got the transition the way I wanted it, it was time to head down to the lake.
Me and LB before the swim portion:
I’m pretty sure swim caps are not flattering on my noggin.
I opted out of a wet suit or shorty. They are too hard to get off after the swim plus I’m tough and don’t need a stinkn’ wet suit! =)
I had to wait a good hour for my turn to swim. I stretched a little bit and did some people watching. With about 20 minutes until my wave I went down to the water where they had an area set up to warm up (in other words where you could get in the water and get used to it and swim a little bit). I slowly inched into the cold water up to my waist. That was enough for the time being. Then it was time and I went over to the start and disappeared into the wad of other blue caps. Finally it was our turn. We stepped on the timer pads and waded into the water. I quickly submerged in the water to ensure my goggles were in place and wouldn’t leak (in my first tri my goggle’s strap snapped right at the start and I had to swim 1/2 mile with my head out of the water because I wear contacts). They were perfect.
They began the countdown from 10 and finally said GO! I was off. Mistake #1: I was in the middle of the wad. Oops. I got kicked and elbowed and punched and jabbed and kicked again. I usually try to be on the outside of the wad of people so that I am not surrounded on all sides. Oh well… I just kept swimming and it wasn’t long until I was out of the pack and swimming comfortably. I have never been afraid of the open water. In fact I love water. So I just swam. Around 1/4 mile I lost my form completely. I have no idea why. I was swallowing a lot of water with every few breaths because it was so wavy. But I got it together and focused on my form: stroke, stroke, stroke, breath…and repeat. Finally I made it to the end 17 min and 24 seconds after I started. As I ran to my bike I heard Jess yell at me! Yay!! I turned to wave at her and kept running.
My bike was in the LAST row of the transition area. Lucky me. NOT. This means that coming out of the water I had to run the farthest to get to my bike. Then I had to run with my bike back to the other side where I exited the area for the bike ride. Transition 1 took me 5 min. TERRIBLE. It is hard to get bike shorts and socks on when you are soaking wet. I did my best but still had a terrible T1 time. I bet at least 2 min of that is because it was all the way in the back.
Once I was all dressed I ran to the mounting area and I was off and riding! The whole time I was swimming I was thinking, “I can’t wait to be on the bike.” That was weird because the bike is my weakness. But not this day. I rode like the wind. I peddled and passed people right and left! I was flying! I was changing gears like a pro! Mistake #2: I didn’t get a drink of water after the swim because I told myself “I drank enough lake water.” Gross but true. I also cannot drink water and ride my bike at the same time. So I figured I would be fine. WRONG. I was so thirsty by the half way point I considered stopping to grab one of the poor dropped water bottles along the course. But I didn’t. I kept riding. I was so proud of my bike ride! There is of course room for improvement but this was my best time to date: 12 miles 43:13. Even though I had a great bike ride the whole time I was thinking, “I can’t wait to be running!” When I came to the dismount area for the bike I jumped off the bike and began to run to my rack (in the VERY BACK). My legs were all kinds of crampy and dead feeling! I almost fell down because they wouldn’t work when I tried to run…luckily I am a ninja and caught myself from falling.
In the mean time my Official Race Crew consisting of Jessica, Katie and LB were about to experience an Epic Fail. They did not see me come in on the bike. They would remain at the Bike Dismount area for the remainder of the race. Waiting for me. Epic. Fail.
I racked my bike, hung my helmet, grabbed my hat and hand-held Nathan water bottle stocked with Gu chomps. Sweet Gu Chomps. Life in a small package. I ran, ate chomps and drank water. I ran and ran. I felt tight and tired and hot. The sun was beating down on me. I didn’t really know how fast I was going but it felt like warp slow (is there such a thing? There is now). I felt like I could walk faster than I was running. Some chick asked me “Any idea how far we have gone?” I looked at my watch (not G. Money, he’s grounded) and used my best running experience judgment and said “Maybe almost a mile?” just as we ran up on the 1 mile sign. She said, “Wow, your good! How did you know that?” I didn’t have the energy to have a conversation with her. I just smiled and ran on. Finally some guy yelled, “Almost there! Just over this hill, two blocks then turn right to the finish!” Two blocks. “I can do that.” All I could think is, “I can’t wait to be done.” I came to the top of the hill, ran two blocks and STILL HAD ABOUT HALF A MILE TO GO. Meanie. Oh well. By this time I was actually beginning to loosen up. I picked up my pace a little bit and turned to the head to the finish!
I was running pretty fast when I saw a lady to my right wearing a stupid Tu Tu giving out high-fives about 6 feet from the finish line. And to my left was a lady finishing who was DETERMINED to give that Tu Tu-ed lady on my right a FIVE. What the heck!? I really hope they got a picture of me being clothes-lined at the finish by these two jerks. It was the stupidest, dumbest experience at a finish line I have ever had…who does that? But I was finished. My run time was 27:27 (8:51 pace). They retrieved my chip and gave me my medal. I got two bottles of water and started to make my way to the transition area.
I was almost to the transition area when I saw a little Mohawk run by…it was LB and Katie. They were surprised to see me and this is when I found out they were still watching for me to finish the bike! Oops! Like i said, epic fail. Oh well, they felt bad but I didn’t care. I was finished and for that I was glad! They will always be my Official Race Crew!
Here are a couple of pics I stole from the site (and they didn’t get me getting clothes lined, I’m actually a little bummed about that. I thought it would have made for a hilarious photo).
Here are some pics from Jess:
I’m glad I decided to do the Tri! The hubs was jealous and now we are looking for another one to do together in the next few weeks! I think I can improve my time by 10 min at least! And the top female finisher had a time of 1:11.38. I wonder what would happen if I actually trained for a tri?
Well, for those of you who read through the entire recap THANK YOU and you are now privy to the fact that I will be hosting a giveaway very soon!! Stay tuned!!!
And thanks for all the encouragement regarding the Bikini Lunges…not quite sure what got into me and caused me to post that…i don’t think it will happen again. Awe shoot, I just lost half my male followers…