I was as prepared as I could be coming into this race....at least I thought I was!
It was really cool to have friends join me in the race this time. Now I know I'm not the only nut case out there - Mike, Tracy, Roger & Antoine are just as crazy - not to mention the 300-400 other folks that were there today.
This was my first official "in the right order" triathlon. The mini tri I raced in March had the run first, bike second and swim last. I really like that order because I'm fresh for the run and can get a good time on it. Doing the swim first (the way about 99% of triathlons are raced) was very different. By the time I got to the run my legs were drained...but I'll save that conversation for a little later.
So, the race began and I waited in line for my turn into the pool. Right away I knew I had made a big mistake when the race director said the numbers began at 300 and I was 389. That meant I was the 89th person into the pool which meant that I must have lied BIG TIME when I estimated my swim time. Anyway, I knew I would be giving it my all so I just went ahead. Each person went into the pool in 5 second increments and after I hit the pool I was getting passed in about 10 seconds. YIKES! I knew the guy behind me looked fast but he was a little faster than expected and that put a real psycological damper on my swim. During the 250 yd swim I had about 5-10 people pass me but I knew once I got on the bike I would catch up. However, after looking at my final times I seem to have actually gotten stronger in the swim than my last time.
Out of the pool into the transition area. I was pretty quick in the transition area throwing on some shorts, a shirt, my sunglasses, helmet and cycling shoes (no socks just like the REAL triathletes!). Off I went. I was breathing really hard coming out of the pool and I could barely catch my breath on the bike. It'll be interesting to see my bike split times because I felt I was giving it my all but with the breathing issues you can never be too sure. During my entire ride only one (really fast) guy passed me so I felt pretty good about that.
On to T2 (second transtion) where I made the mistake of sitting down to change shoes. I felt I could have done a little better in T2 although it was still somewhat fast. Dropped the hat & glasses, took off the cycling shoes, put on the running shoes with quick pull laces, put on the running hat, grabbed a big sip of water and off I went. I was still breathing a lot harder than I wanted to but I had a goal in mind - at least third place in my age group.
Now I'm out for the run. I couldn't believe how little energy I had. I felt really drained. The run was only 1.4 miles and believe it or not I took about 3 short (about 10 second) walk breaks. THAT is how drained I was. I've run 22 miles before without taking a walk break but this little 1.4 miles just about killed me. When I came around toward the end I was super excited to see my family and friends waiting at the finish line (as well as several other places along the way...) cheering me on.
Although I wasn't able to place in my age group I really felt good about my first "in the right order" tri. Lord willing, my next tri will be in August and I'm hoping to get used to an open water swim before then because I hear that is another totally different feeling.
Overall I had my best tri time of 36:37 - that is 25 seconds better than the last time. However, I came in 6th place in my age group which was a little further back than the 14 seconds I missed 3rd place by back in March. I guess the real triathletes have come out hiding now! God has brought me through yet another success!
On to Iron Girl!!!
P.S. I didn't have the camera batteries charged so we didn't get as many good photos as we normally would have. Thanks to Amber for the few we did get!