Thursday, 4 July 2013

Race Report: Triathlon #2

Two weeks ago, my neighbour convinced me to run with her on a Saturday morning. This was the jump start I needed to train for my second triathlon of the season - my first timed event. I had two weeks to do eight runs, four swims and two long bike rides on my Miyata to get me race ready. After my successful Triathlon for MS in the Spring, I decided to rest and recover. Life took over and my training took a back seat. I needed to work hard to be prepared for the next race.

I wasn't completely wrong.

On the morning of the race, I make sure to remain calm and "trust my training". I set up my bike and transition area according to my liking. I coordinate my cheering squad so I see a familiar face during each leg of the race. The atmosphere is both encouraging and competitive. I swim two laps to warm up; I need a strong start at the whistle. The pool is warmer than I prefer and I don't enjoy my swim. In spite of this, I feel a huge sense of accomplishment come over me as I run outside to T1.

I quickly put on my cycling shorts and running top in preparation for the bike leg. This time, I choose to take the extra time to put socks on and to gulp down some of my smoothie. I walk my bike out of the lacrosse box and am encouraged to run to the mount area, which is about 100 feet further. I see Pat arriving to cheer, and hear Ali sending me off into the morning sun ride. I'm not too excited to do three loops for a 20km bike leg. I fear it will be boring, but there are oddities that make my ride: a baby deer on someone's front lawn, a volunteer who is directing traffic in yoga poses, the youth competitors whizzing by, fancy time trial helmets passing on my left, Pat and Ali clapping and yelling so loudly I think I am in the lead every time I pass them.

last turn
I am able to dismount gracefully and run back to the lacrosse box for T2. I am efficient and out of there quickly, which makes me wonder how much more benefit I would get if I switched to race laces. Rob and Olga are on their front lawn to encourage the beginning of my run. I complain that I am tired, but I am energized by their smiles and waves. A first timer crosses paths with me which I think is odd: the run isn't an out and back. Later, I find out he had run more than he was supposed to and was upset at the road marshals for his mistake.

"You're almost there! I'm serious. Just turn the corner and see the cones," are the sweetest words to my sweaty ears. And she is right. Jose, the kids, Olga, and Pat are happy to see the finish line too. I pick up my pace as much as I can (which is very little) and cross the arch.

My first thought is how awful, hot, and sweaty I feel. I am disappointed that I hadn't trained well enough to enjoy my first timed race. I have a slice of orange and a peanut butter cookie and my mood improves greatly. I am proud that I hadn't given up: I did the front crawl for the whole 500 meters doing mostly flip turns; I put my shirt on before my helmet; I pedaled hard without falling; I ran without walk rests; I encouraged triathletes when they passed; and I finished without puking.

sunny squinty smile
I have caught the triathlon bug and wish to do many more races. However, I don't think this season is the time in my life to do this. I intend to train with a triathlon club from January to June of next year and race more next season. I want to do my first open water race, as well as a longer distance race. I want to wear a fancy helmet and have fun doing it.

I hope I'm not completely wrong.

No comments:

Post a Comment