AAAANNND NOW, THE MOMENT YOU’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR…RACE REPORT!
Ok, so I hope you all read the above line with the correct announcer’s voice in your head. I was going for something between circus ring-leader and football announcer.
Anyways, as you’ve probably already guessed, I finished a tri! I’ve been training for it all summer, but I’ve been too scared to post about it since I didn’t have any idea whether I’d stay healthy or finish the thing. But, now that I have, I can bring you up to speed.
I decided I wanted to try and do the Lighthouse Sprint Triathlon in May. I took training pretty slowly/cautiously. I didn’t train nearly as much as I could have, but I did manage to make each distance in training (500m, 13 mi, 5k). I could feel myself getting stronger bit by bit.
By the time the week of the tri came around, I was a nervous wreck. It was like a flashback to high school cross country season! :0 Just thinking about the race put me in this really weird, quiet mood. I got to the race site the morning of the race pretty pumped, which is weird for me since I normally dread races with my entire being. I think it was because I’ve had to sit out of so many tris in the past year. I was excited that it was finally my turn.
Tim and Jessica came out to support me. I was really happy to have them there to keep me calm and cheer me on. I’m so lucky to have such great friends (and boyfriend) 🙂 !
The swim was in a pool “snake style” which basically meant you went up and back in each lane before you went on to the next. They put us in by swim time so I was pretty close to the back of the pack (fine by me!). I felt pretty good for about the first half of the swim. I was swimming freestyle, which if you know me, is a pretty big deal, and I wasn’t feeling short of breath. Then, at about the halfway point, this guy that had been swimming in front of me touched the wall and decided that instead of going around me, he should dunk me under the water and go over me. 😦 *Jerk* That little maneuver caused me to inhale a bit of water and got me a little flustered. It was pretty much breath stroke from that point on. I finished the swim in 12:43. Not too shabby, all things considered.
I got out of the pool and trotted over to my transition area, sucked down a gel and was off for the bike. The first quarter or so of the bike was actually pretty miserable. I had a huge headache. There were times I thought my head might explode. I’m not sure why that happened exactly (I’m sure it had something to do with the dreaded pool!). Once my head quit pounding, I loved the bike leg. It was a flat course around a lake with a nice breeze. At the time, I had no idea how I was doing. I passed a few people and got passed by a few. My only comparison was last April when I got passed by a TON of people and only passed one. Overall the 13 mile ride went by without a hitch for me, although I did hear as I was coming in that someone got hit by a car. 😦 Bike time: 47:33
As I set out for my run, my legs were complete jello. All I could think was “Oh my God I have to run 3 miles now”. It was also starting to get a bit hot by that time. I took the run slow (read: snail’s pace), stopping at every water station to get a drink and pour water over my neck. The course was actually pretty nice. It was an out and back course which I think is both a blessing and a curse (b/c you have to watch people on the back leg when you’re going out). It went through a neighborhood with shaded areas and some small hills. It was really nice not to have to worry about traffic. I felt like the out leg lasted so much longer than the back leg. It was probably just a mental thing knowing that all I had to do was run back the way I had already come, and knowing that I was actually going to finish the race. I started my kick about 150 yards from the finish line. It was a decent kick (I was always taught to finish strong) but it wasn’t a full sprint. I think I actually ended up passing some guy at the very end. Woo!
For about 5 minutes after I finished, it was all I could do to hold myself upright. I think I actually ended up leaning on one of the temporary fences the race people had set up to mark the racer area from the spectator area. Tim and Jessica were there immediately to congratulate and encourage me. I was so happy to see them. Tim (of course) immediately pulled out his phone and snapped a picture of me as I was leaning on the fence. I attempted to smile (really!) but it didn’t come out quite as enthusiastic as I had hoped. Overall, I really enjoyed the race. It was challenging, and hot, but I accomplished something I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to do again and that, for me, is a huge victory.
My total time ended up being 1:41:45 which is actually about 10 minutes faster than the tri I did last April! I guess I’m back and stronger than before? Hahaha I’m not sure yet, but I like the sound of it! I was second-to-last in my age group, but only 2 minutes too slow to place in my age group. I guess we were a pretty close bunch. All things considered, I’m happy with how I raced. It’s a good stepping stone. Who knows? Maybe I’ll join my boyfriend in age group placers sometime soon! 🙂
That’s all I have for now. Until next time….