Think I can keep it short and sweet? Maybe. I'll try...
Here I am setting up my transition area:
Here is the lake. You can kind of see the buoys out there with the first one off to the far right, then we made a left turn and and a final left turn to take us to the end of the 750 yd swim.
The Hubs and J-Ninja's Hubster were in the 3rd wave. The 4th wave, mine, was 4 minutes after that.
Here we are at the start, waiting for our waves to start. I think my swim cap was doing something funky to my left eye. That's hot...And poor A-Dog was in the Novice category, awarding him the manly pink swim cap...So weird but he took it like a man.
I had high hopes of catching The Hubs during the swim but as I watched his wave move further and further away from me I knew it would be tough if not impossible. Finally it was my turn to swim and I took off. I swam pretty well, keeping my stroke even and my legs kicking. I couldn't stay in a good breathing rhythm though. No matter how hard I try my breathing gets all crazy. I was breathing every second stroke and it was making me mad but I just kept going. I finally rounded the first buoy and felt like I was on the homeward stretch. I caught my first blue cap (was it The Hubs??? No, dang.) before the second buoy. Then I caught a couple more and passed them, still not The Hubs. As I made my way to the shallow water and stood up I recognized J-Ninja's Hubster....not my Hubs but still I was pretty excited. I ended up being 9th of my age group out of the water. Not too shabby!
I felt good coming out of the water and made the LONG run to the bike transition area. It was one of the longest shoots I have ever experienced. But I hit my bike and needed no wardrobe adjustment. I threw on my socks, bike shoes, helmet, and sun glasses and hit the road. J-Ninja's Hubster was right in front of me but as soon as his bootie hit the bike seat he was GONE...like LONG GONE. As in I choked on his dust then he was so far gone his dust settled before I ever hit it...
The bike route was good. Hilly as all get out but still good. I had no idea where I was distance wise (I really need a bike computer) and all I knew is that the hills just kept coming. The good thing with hills is that you go up then you go down...I came out of my aero bars for the down hills, bad bad bad but after hurling off my bike on a long downhill going 25 mph I am a little on the chicken side, I need to have breaks in hand. I was brave though and with my hands on the breaks, just in case, I let myself go down the hills, even gearing up so that I could peddle and go even faster. My average speed was 17.3 mph. I am pretty happy with that since that was my second ride in two months. ***Ahem...*** Cough*** Cough*** I used a GU tablet in my front water bottle to fuel during the ride. It worked really well and now I am liking the GU drink for fuel as well as Cytomax. Both seem to get the job done.
I came off the bike in bad shape. My legs, as usual, were all crazy and felt like maybe they were going to fall off. That or run off without my body. Either way, what a sight to see, huh? They always seem to be moving faster than my body can follow. Does that make sense? It's like they wanted to have a faster turnover than my body can follow and it is really weird/hard/painful/awkward. But I made it to my transition area and racked my bike. Off I went on the 5k run...I forgot my Chomps. FAIL.
The first half mile of the run was on the paved road. No biggie. But then we took a turn and headed into the woods. Uhh....don't get me wrong, I love trail running BUT I haven't done it in a long, LONG time. Running on grass, gravel and dirt is completely different than road running. I think it takes more energy, at least for me it does. Just like the bike course the run course was hill after hill. I was hitting a pretty good pace every once and a while. I would be sub 9 min/mile on the down hills just to see a 10 min/mile on the next uphill.
There were ample water stops and I took drinks and poured lots of water on my head. By this time it was getting pretty hot to accompany the already, ever-present humidity. I was happy to hit the 2 mile turn-around and head back to the finish...only 1.1 miles to go. I could do this. The run was pretty uneventful, as I like it. I made it to the home stretch and saw J-Ninja, LB, The Hubs (and Hubster? I don't remember) all there...My own cheering crowd! I crossed the line and the lady wanted my timing chip but I just couldn't stop my legs from going. Weird. That doesn't usually happen.
Overall it was a good race and I am happy with my performance. It was a tough, hilly course. The only flat part was the swim...I'm surprised they didn't have us swim up a river....Of course I would have like to have done better but there is always next time...like July 30th in Washington....Ah, hold on, don't get all excited all my WA peeps, Washington, NC. Cruel, I know, but there really is a town named that and I think it is only fitting for me to participate in that event. So I am excited!
Here are more pics for you...courtesy of J-Ninja (THANKS BTW!) Coming to the finish...
Me, J-Ninja and LB after the race:
The Hubs doing his thing, heading to the bike from the swim:
And nothing says, CELEBRATION like Mexican food after a good race!! Me and J-Ninja down'n some food:
And I have a question...if there are any Race Directors reading this: Why no finishers medal? I would say maybe 25% of tris give out medals. That seems weird to me. How am I supposed to do my signature pose without it?