My first triathlon….done. and. done! I had so much anticipation and nervous feelings about doing a triathlon. With the encouragement of a friend, I bit the bullet and signed up and I am so glad I did. This was a perfect race for a triathlon “newbie”.
This day did not start off like I wanted it to. I set my alarm clock for 5:05am and planned to snooze until 5:15am. I am usually so anal about checking to make sure my alarm is switched on and set to the right time. Well, it didn’t get switched on. I woke up to my husband shaking me telling me I overslept by an hour. It was 6:05. I needed to leave my house at 6:20 for the hour long ride to the race location. Not. good.
I scrambled around, got dressed, made oatmeal and coffee and hopped in the car. Luckily I had packed my things the night before and my bike was already in the FJ. I left the house around 6:25 and arrived at the race in plenty of time!
I met up with several friends and we headed straight for the transition area. I got my bearings and figured out where to put my bike and set up my transition. Since the race was a super sprint (so I thought), I didnt pack a whole lot of extra stuff to take up room in the transition area.
After set-up, we headed to pick up our race numbers. A friend glanced down to look at her bib and make sure she was registered for the right race. I figured it was a good idea, so I checked…
Our run club organizer had signed me up for the sprint and not the super sprint. I didn’t want to go through the hassle of changing it. Deep down inside I knew I could do it. So, I DID!
Once I got over the shock, it was about time to enter the water. A 400m swim. I can do this. I have only been swimming close to a month but I can do this. Before I knew it we were off. I stayed in the very back of the back. The lake swim was so much better for me than being in the pool. I hit the first buoy and side stroked around it to catch my breath and kept going. It was amazing how quickly the buoys came and went. Before I knew it, I was jerking my goggles and swim cap off and pulling the earplugs out of my ears and running my way to T1.
400m swim: 8:15
I chunked my swim stuff in my bucket and put on my glasses and then my helmet. Then, I sat down to wash my feet of, dry them with a towel, and put on my socks and bike shoes. I powered up the Garmin 405 and I was out of T1. Because of such a small race, the transition times weren’t calculated. I believe it took me somewhere in the 3:00 range, which is not bad for my first ever transition!
I felt good as I went out on the bike. I wanted to keep a 17mph or higher but that did not happen. Enter:hills. They were everywhere and I had no clue. I struggled up some of the hills on the later part of the course. I may not be gearing right for hills, so I definitely need to work on that. Overall, the course was great and I felt good on my bike.
16 mile bike : a estimate of 59:00 averaging 16.9mph
As I came close to T2 I slowed down and got off the bike. I tried running with the bike but quickly knew I just needed to walk. I wasn’t that far away. In T2, I threw my helmet and glasses into my bucket and then changed my shoes. I have got to get lock laces because I fumbled around a good bit trying to tie my dang shoes. I grabbed a sip of water and decided to forego the Garmin. I did not feel like trying to change the mode from bike to run! Hello husband….Christmas present…hint hint….Garmin 910…hint hint. I think my T2 time should have been somewhere around 2:00.
The run which should be my strongest just wasn’t. The run was a trail run which I also did not know about. I have a deep hatred for trail running! The first mile I was huffing and puffing and I had no idea what my pace was. I knew it felt slow. At the mile turnaround there was water. I stopped to drink and then started right back. After the out and back down the sandy dirt path, we ran the last mile through the actual woods. I was just ready to be done at this point. I couldn’t seem to get my legs to turnover as fast as I wanted them to. I feel I could have pushed harder but I wanted to make sure I made it to the finish line also.
5k run: 28:15 (9:14 pace)
Although I ended with a slow run, I crossed the finish line and felt immediate excitement and joy that I had just completed something I said I would never do because I could never swim!
Note to self: Haven’t you learned already to never say never!!!
I had a great time and enjoyed being out there with so many friends and familiar faces! What a great race to do as a first triathlon.
So I know the ropes with runners, but I am not in the know yet with triathletes. Can I call myself one now?!? Sure, why the heck not! I AM a triathlete!!!