As of today, I can officially call myself a triathlete. Although I plan to use the term "loosely" for the present time. My preparations actually started on Friday night. I can't believe how much STUFF you have to have for a tri. Very different from a "run only" event. I got myself to bed before 10 which was a good thing as I was planning on getting up by 5 the next morning. The alarm went off, I showered, double checked all my gear, ate breakfast and headed out to our local beach. Okay, I live in Ohio so you can't really call it a beach but it is the closest thing we have
The morning was overcast to partly sunny, about 75 with humidity about 80%. I was just grateful that the T-storms had passed. I meet my friend Colleen and she gave me some pre-race tips
I happened to hear a couple people talking about the water temp. I tried to ignore them but I could not. The water temp was going to be a brisk 69 degrees. I decided not to get in ahead of time. I just waited until my wave start entered the water.
I quickly adjusted to the water temp but not the idea of open water swimming. The many months of training in the pool in NO WAY prepared me for today. I was easily swimming over a mile in the pool. Today it was a struggle just to swim a quarter of a mile. Swim, did I say that. Maybe I should have called it swalking. Thank goodness my friend Colleen had advised me to make my first triathlon one where it would be shallow enough to touch bottom if needed. Here are a couple pics of my swim leg.
Yes that is me swalking.
Me attempting to swim (the one with her head above water). Still was sucking in a ton of water even with my head sticking out. My husband said he could hear me coughing and hacking up on the beach. Boy, I hope he was kidding.
This is my happiest photo as I was finally about to get out of that blasted water that had just totally humbled me and kicked my booty all the way to the curb. Now I will say I was surprised with the amount of walking I had to do that according to my watch, I finished my swim leg in about 11 1/2 minutes. This is considerable faster than my pool swims. I think because I felt like I was struggling so much and was thinking that there couldn't possibly be anyone left in my wave start behind me, I might have been pushing myself a little too hard. Maybe that is one reason I was struggling so much.
I was extremely disappointed in my swim. By the time I got out of the water, I was tired, upset and somewhat shell shocked. I really thought my transition from swim to bike went pretty quickly but I was assured that I sat there for a long time while other ladies came and went.
Once I got out onto the bike, I felt pretty good. The ride was 12.1 miles. There was only one moderate hill towards the end that gave me a little bit of difficulty. My average mph was faster than I had done on any ride to date and I passed quite a number of people.
My legs felt a little bit like jello when I dismounted from the bike. I ran my bike back to the transition area. Now I KNOW this transition was quick. I literally threw off my helmet and gloves, changed my Garmin to running mode (as I was running) and grabbed my hat from my hubby (long story) on the way out.
The run was 2 miles on mainly gravel and asphalt. There was a little bit of grass that we had to run through to get to the trail and with all the rain we had, my feet were soaked and muddy by the time I got there. The first mile was a gradual uphill the entire time. On tired legs I was really feeling it. My first mile was a little slower than what I had been doing in practice but considering the sun was shining by then, the humidity had kicked up and the course was uphill, I felt like I did okay. What comes up, must come down. The second mile was a nice gradual downhill and I was able to kick up the pace a notch. I finished strong and according to my Garmin finished my run in just a little over 17 minutes. Gotta be happy with that
No official results yet but according to preliminary results my finishing time was 1:24:07. I finished 11 out of 23 in my age group. I am anxious to see what my split times and transition times were.
There will be another tri in my future. I am planning on registering for one in August. This will be a longer tri with a swim double the distance I did today. The water will be deeper and I don't believe I will be able to touch. I have made great strides in the pool over the last couple months. I figure I can make great strides in the open water from now until August if I put my mind to it. I really want redemption
Don't get me wrong, I am extremely proud of myself but I know I can do better. I really want to say that I am a swimmer.
EDIT: Jut got official results.
Overall Time~ 1:19:52
Swim Leg~ 11:48
Age Group Placement~ 11/24
Overall Placement~ 45/123