I’m excited to blog that I’ve completed my first Olympic distance triathlon! Besides a marathon in the spring, this was my big goal for the year. Who knew 10 years ago I’d ever be able to swim a mile?
Apparently my husband knew all along, he says so anyways. Saturday while heading to pick up my race stuff in Traverse I was so nervous I was practically crying and my wonderful husband just kept saying, “You can do this. I know it. Stop worrying.” He was right of course (but don’t tell him I said he was right). It’s pretty amazing to have him there every step of this journey and having him tell me I can do it even when I’m doubting myself. OK, Enough mushy stuff… Race Report!
I got some great pointers before my race from my new mentor and I used every one of them. It was hard to relax on Saturday and lay low as I am always such a go-er, but I even took a nap! Sunday morning my race started at 8:05am and since we were staying with some of our dearest friends right on the peninsula we were only minutes away. It was so nice to roll out of bed, eat and drive only minutes to the transition area. It was rather chilly, air temps in the low 60′s and water in the low 70′s. Wetsuit legal! Woohoo, I love the extra support (flotation) that my wetsuit allows me. I got transition all set up although the numbers were a bit wonky, so it was a squeeze. Although don’t the numbers always seem to be wonky? After my last bathroom trip I wedged myself into my wetsuit and nervously waited for my wave.
The swim went relatively well. I finished in 40 minutes which is a little short of double what I do .5 miles, so it was a win for me. Plus I didn’t drown! Felt pretty strong going into my bike until I hit the first hill. The first half of the course had three huge climbs and they were challenging. The second hill I dropped my chain from not paying attention to my shifting. It was costly as it took me two tries and a couple of minutes to get the stupid thing back on. Then from a dead stop I had a hill to climb. Bummer. Got through the first half and had an easy rolling course for the remainder with one more big hill. I stood up most of the last hill and did a great job of spinning out my legs coming into transition.
Running shoes on and out I went for 6.2 miles. I felt great for the first 4 miles. My first mile off the bike was 9:51! That’s fantastic for me! At about 4.5 miles I bogged a bit. They had an off-road portion of the course. It was warmer, I was running through sand, it wasn’t too much fun. I made it back to the pavement and noticed that some of the competitors I had passed at the beginning of the run were getting closer to me. I didn’t want to let them pass me back so I knew I had to find an extra gear. I dug deep and picked up the pace. I turned the corner at mile 6 and they were still behind me. With 100 yards to the finish line I suddenly heard them coming up behind me. I sprinted it out and didn’t let them pass me!! I was pumped to have been able to stay in front of them.
It was an amazing day and I celebrated with several frothy beverages and a lot of excited recounting of how I was able to keep in front of my pursuers. After all, it’s a requirement to give exciting glory stories to your friends afterwards, right? I fortunately also got to meet a Team Priority Health racer who was doing the Olympic for a training race. Thanks for the nice chat about equipment Chuck!! Picture below.