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UP Northwoods Triathlon.. my first race...AWESOME :)

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Monday, July 02, 2012

I finished my first triathlon today and I finished strong. I did far better that I thought I would in spite of irregular training and just stuff getting in the way. My biggest fear was swimming since I have not really been a swimmer in my life. i went from knowing nothing about basic endurance swimming to doing an incredible job on the swim course. Out of 43 male sprint participants, I was 28th out of the water to head into transition if I read the results right. I am very proud of myself for how well I have adapted to open water swimming. When I first started, I couldn't do more than a lap or two before becoming totally winded and would have to stand up and catch my breath.

I had all this anxiety about the swim course and it would up being the easiest part of the whole race. I was actually a little disappointed that there wasnt more to do, the water was PERFECT this morning.

The transition was less than graceful but i got through it in 3 min 53 sec.. then it was off to the bike course. I knew what I was in for since i had toured the course a week earlier. About 8 miles of the bike course was really hard and my cycling was hit and miss at best but i really did good. One particular hill was affectionately named 'Cardiac Hill"

Here is a picture of it. you can see the hills and the big hill in the background but a picture does NOT do it justice. Ya just gotta be there... The rest of the hilly parts was pretty much like this as well. In a word...gruelling.


The bike course was simply beautiful and the weather was perfect for riding. I did alot of spinning to cope with the hard climbs. One of the big questions of successful triathlon is how much energy do you expend to gain in one discipline without it degrading the others. i decided to take it easy on the bike since it was so demanding so that I might have something left for the run.

I was never happier to get off the bike after such a gruelling ride through the hills. I moved very quickly through transition 2 and into the run. My T2 time was only 36 seconds.

My first few steps off the bike made me feel like my shoes had been turned into cement blocks. The only way I can describe how I felt was about how I would feel at mile 10 of a tough half marathon. I had used alot of energy negotiating the hills on the bike and now my legs felt like lead. That had to be the toughest 5K race I have ever done.

One thing that should be noted is that it was really tough to evaluate how I was really feeling on the run. I felt my usual "runners sense" as to how much effort I had left in me was skewed by the fatigue from the bike. What i felt I was doing pace-wise and what the chip time actually said were two different things. I felt like I was doing a 45-50 minute 5K with the sluggishness i was feeling. My chip time was actually 39:04, only 25 sec from a new PR for the 5K.

The race: .3mile swim / 18 miles bike / 5K run

My overall performance was-
swim: 13:55, T1 3:53, bike: 1:16, T2 36 seconds, Run 39:04 Overall sprint time: 2hrs: 13 min


-Packet Pickup






My Transition area












Overall, I am so proud of myself. I am really tired, sunburned, but very happy. This was a brand new thing for me and it took alot of courage to take something that I have only dabbled in and to actually compete. I'm hooked. All i can think about is what I can do to get ready for the next one. Now, for the first time, long course triathlon doesn't seem so far fetched. I can actually see myself finishing a Half Ironman in the next 2 to 3 years with consistant training. I think I can actually make this a reality.

thank you so much for all of the comments, goodies, and all the support. I read every one of them before I headed out to the staging area. i took you with me.

Love you folks :)

Robert
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EBLOOMING 7/6/2013 10:20PM

    You are amazing!! We are all proud of you here on Spark!! Inspiring too!! emoticon emoticon

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SUTERSPACE 2/6/2013 1:42PM

    Wow, you blow me away. This is just so totally awesome. Great job!!

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CHUM48 10/1/2012 9:39AM

    Good Job!

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SPSPSP1 8/29/2012 6:55PM

    emoticon

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VIMVIGOR 7/28/2012 12:25PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon That is sooooooooooo impressive. You the man!!!! Cheryl emoticon

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DMANN104 7/23/2012 12:36PM

    emoticon Job!! emoticon

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DEBK0923 7/16/2012 6:03PM

    emoticon

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PENOWOK 7/13/2012 7:29AM

    Way to go!

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SALLYNEAL 7/10/2012 6:45PM

  You are brilliant and so brave. emoticon

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HOLLY255255 7/10/2012 5:39PM

    Thank you for all the info!! My first is in September and you gave me inspiration that I can do it too. Thanks!

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CATMAGNET 7/10/2012 3:29PM

    When I first saw Northwoods, I thought of the Woodruff/Minoqua area of Wisconsin (one of the hospitals I worked with when I lived in Wisconsin was Howard Young)...then, I noticed that it was in Iron Mountain! Can't say I ever went to the UP, but it sounds lovely...and congrats on a job well done!

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PROVERBS31JULIA 7/9/2012 11:39PM

    Oh no! Sunburn!? Next race, get you some non-GMO coconut oil - really works!! Im fair skinned and burn easily (probably have some latent skin cancers lurking beneath the surface?). Works for energy too - although I've never tried to deal with having dome with me in a race. (i'd need to google that!).

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MINIMINIV 7/9/2012 2:21AM

    emoticon
I wish I had the guts to do that!

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TFUNKSGIRL 7/8/2012 8:59PM

    Congratulations on such a wonderful achievement!! emoticon javascript:%20void(0);

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RUNNINGYOGINIRE 7/8/2012 3:57PM

  Congratulations on first tri!!! AWESOME

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TANGLEDMERMAID 7/7/2012 9:28PM

    congrats :)

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QUIERRA 7/7/2012 3:40AM

    This is so awesome. Makes me excited for the day when I do my first triathlon.

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CAROL494 7/6/2012 8:08PM

  emoticon emoticon

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WHITEANGEL4 7/6/2012 7:54PM

    Fantastic job. Keep up the good work. Keep us posted on your progress

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TURTLETRACK 7/6/2012 4:43PM

    GREAT you did it.

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CLPURNELL 7/6/2012 1:24PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MARITIMER3 7/6/2012 1:08PM

    Wow and double wow! Congratulations.

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CINDYBEL 7/6/2012 11:34AM

    emoticon I'm so impressed with what you've accomplished.

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JERICHO1991 7/6/2012 10:57AM

    What an accomplishment! Fantastic!! Thanks for sharing the details, and encouraging me to continue moving forward with my fitness workouts.

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YIWEN39 7/6/2012 8:31AM

    Congrats! That's awesome emoticon emoticon

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MATTERJT 7/6/2012 5:40AM

    What a great blog! Congrats on your accomplishments and for telling such a great story. I have never done a triathlon before, but have always wanted to. Did you do this by yourself? Or did you have someone do it with you? Also, do you have to have someone watching your stuff at the Transition points? Or is it safe to be unattended? I guess I've always wanted to know how it works. :)

Great job! I think an IronMan is definitely in the works. :)

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FANGFACEKITTY 7/6/2012 3:45AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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RONNIEHUEY 7/6/2012 12:52AM

    WOW! you are amazing!

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SOCDIRECTOR 7/5/2012 9:52PM

    Kudos, Robert! You DID IT! Cheers to a job well done!
Keep up the momentum. And best of luck on the ext triathlon.

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JERZGURL_NAN 7/5/2012 9:20PM

    how wonderful and encouraging - great job - you did an amazing conquest

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GUNTHER110 7/5/2012 7:12PM

    You should be proud of yourself, that is emoticon

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NAOLEE 7/5/2012 5:39PM

    emoticon

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REGSHAR 7/5/2012 1:59PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
You really did marvelous! thank you for the up lifting !!!

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CHERRY666 7/5/2012 11:31AM

    Congratulations! Thanks for sharing!

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BRENNI71 7/5/2012 11:21AM

  emoticon , emoticon , emoticon .... emoticon

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KATHIC2 7/5/2012 10:30AM

  Bravo!!! You are inspiring.

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KENIKE08 7/5/2012 10:06AM

    Great for you that you had the strength and endurance to complete the event. Your training did you well. emoticon

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STARLIGHT615 7/5/2012 9:35AM

    Great job!!!! I have thought about doing a Tri, but it totally scares the crap out of me!!!

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FARIS71 7/5/2012 8:15AM

    My gracious that is AWESOME!

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DIANNEMT 7/5/2012 7:51AM

    Awesome!! My DD goes to Mich Tech so I know how rolling some of that country can be!! Congrats on a great finish!

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LODESTONE 7/5/2012 6:30AM

    Be proud of yourself! you earned it. What an amazing journey to reach this goal. You can make it to the marathon or Ironman with your determination. Go get 'em, Tiger! emoticon emoticon

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DUXGRL1 7/5/2012 6:29AM

    Congratulations!

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LOONEY23 7/5/2012 6:19AM

    Congrats on your accomplishment! I to would like to achieve this type of goal. You are a true role motivator! emoticon

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GWBACH 7/4/2012 8:22PM

    Great Job!! I would love to ride cadillac hill, looks awesome.

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FOXFIRENDTS 7/4/2012 7:54PM

    emoticon

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ACTIVE_AT_60 7/4/2012 6:07PM

    Robert .Love your race report. Great to talk with you after the event. Congrats on your first tri. As for T1 - don't be so hard on yourself!!!

Comment edited on: 7/4/2012 6:08:14 PM

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THOMS1 7/4/2012 5:26PM

    emoticon you have inspired me. emoticon

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TEACHEROF4TH 7/4/2012 3:47PM

    Congrtulations! That is definitely something to be proud of!

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LITTLEROX20 7/4/2012 12:34PM

    What an accomplishment! emoticon

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SONDRAJ20 7/4/2012 9:57AM

    Congratulations!! This is a great accomplishment and you have every reason to be very proud of yourself. I hope you take some time to bask in the glory of this achievement before you start training for your next challenge.

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