I will admit, I most probably asked 2000 questions of Richard about tris, training, rules, etc. It is good to have a friend and role model that not only answers all of these questions, but does so happily! He was always encouraging, uplifting, and positive, even when I wasn't. His outlook on challenges is always in the very best light possible, and this method of thinking has helped me to look at how I see things in all of my life, not just training. I owe Richard a great deal of gratitude of which I can never repay. Thank you, my friend!
Richard met me at Northshore to drop off the bike on Friday before the race. The level of organization associated with this race was close to that of The Woodlands Marathon. Very well managed, excellent communication, and no questions left unanswered. The bike check in went off without a hitch and after a few encouraging words from Richard, I went home to ready myself for the morning.
I was surprised at the fact that I was tired and ready for bed by 9 pm. That is very untypical for me. I usually can't sleep and worry about every little detail the night before a race. I felt calm, and fell asleep shortly after 9. I woke at 4 without my alarm and was out the door by 5:15 am.
Body marking did not take very long and then I headed into the transition area. It wasn't too difficult to set up my shoes, helmet, and bottles, but I fiddled around with things as if that would make me feel better about the fact that I had no idea what I was doing. All of my transition lessons have come from watching Fish in his transitions at the Kid's triathlons. I figure it can't be that much different for adults.
As I came out of transition set up, I ran into a good friend and his son, who happens to be very good friends with Foo. They have been friends since they were 3 years old. His dad was kind enough to take a picture with this wonderful young man who is fairly new to triathlons. He had a great day taking 3rd place in his AG and 12th overall.
|I remember this guy in diapers!!|
|The sun was rising as I waited to enter the water.|
|My cheering squad!|
|Glad to be through my biggest hurdle of the day!|
My swim time was much slower than I expected. The course was measured in meters instead of yards and I have heard that there are some questions as to whether or not the waves started later than were supposed to. Swim time was 13:49 for 500 meters.
Transition 1 went fine. I didn't feel as though I rushed. Planned to eat a few honey stingers, but didn't seem to think I needed them at this point. Time: 1:53.
The bike went fine. I felt like I could not pedal fast enough.
I just didn't have the energy to propel the bike. I felt better on the back side of the bike, but the avg speed was 16.6 mph. Time was 54:15.
The run began just as the cloud cover disappeared. My legs felt so out of whack coming off the bike. I could barely manage a fast walk heading into transition. Rather than push the legs, I gave them that time to adjust to being off the bike. I racked the bike, readied myself for the run, waved a quick hello to the family, and then headed out to tackle the part of the race which I was hoping to be my strongest.
The run was tough. I ran well, but not as well as I could have. Fatigue had definitely set in and now the heat was cranking up quickly with the sun blazing down. I escaped into the sound of my shoes tapping out a catchy beat. It was on the run that I realized, ultras and Triathlons can never be placed into the same category. Just because someone can do one, does not necessarily mean that the same person could do both. Ultras require a totally different method of training and mentality. Start slow, pace yourself, walk the hills, etc. Sprint triathlons put the athlete in the mind "sprint" mindset. Redline each event within the race Swim hard, Bike swiftly, Run as fast as you can! I found that I did reserve a bit on the run trying hard not to blow up the last half mile. My splits look good for the run portion of the race, and yet I know I could have run a better race. I am happy with my 25:45 time, 8:18 pace. Not a pr pace for me, but a starting point after almost 2 years of ultra training which was primarily a run/walk method. Works great for ultras, not so great for sprint distances.
|Heading into the finish!|
Of course none of what I do could ever be possible without my wonderful husband. He supports me from the ground up. He is the voice of reason when I discern which races and distances I want to tackle. He builds me up and holds me up. He is the reason I am able to do any of these things.