Thursday, August 19, 2010
Well it has been 4 days since race day - super busy and off schedule with my daughter home from college for a week - but here goes:
My first race of this season is a sprint triathlon, it is in Key Biscayne which is about an hour or so from home. My alarm went off at 4:30 and I got right up - had been able to fall asleep at a reasonable hour so that really helped start me off right. I had set my clothes out and had only to step into them after my shower - off for a cup of coffee and peanutbutter toast, my favorite breakfast for these events. Its hard for me to eat so early, but I forced it. I know i will be grateful later.
My car was packed the day before, all i had to pack was my cooler for drinks and snacks. Meant to bring a banana for pre-race, but forgot. Also forgot my Nuun tablets for water on the bike, an electrolyte type drink I like better than gatorade. Thought of both of these as I drove up.
Realized when i was almost there that I might be running late, I never found the cut-off time for the transition area, and had completely forgotten about that fact. I arrived, unloaded my bike, and rode w/backpack on to the transition area where I heard "5 minutes till transition closes!" Had to get body numbers on before allowed into transition - hurried and got in and racked my bike, hastily set out my stuff - and off to find a bathroom.
This race is at a great park on Key Biscayne, so real bathrooms, no portapotties. Makes you grateful for plumbing, these triathlons. It truly is the little things in life.
Off to see the olympic racers for their start, then had time to warm up swim in the very warm waters off Key Biscayne. Flat calm, beautiful sunrise.
My swim wave began and I had decided to make a push for the beginning, since I am pretty comfortable with my swim. Off to a good start, then the inevitable kick in the face. I thought my right goggle was implanted into my eye socket, I was kicked so hard. But I kept going, and finally got away from the crowd and was feeling steady and strong. It is only a quarter mile swim, and as I got to the last buoy I realized the swimmers around me were getting up and running - must have been an extreme low tide - we were only knee deep by this time. So I ran the last of it.
The run to transition was long and in the sand but I kept jogging, I did not want to allow myself to walk. Transition went smoothly, found my bike easily and ran to start. I got on the bike and had been pedaling a few minutes before I realized I had never put my bike computer on! Bummer! That really helps me, knowing how fast I am traveling and how far i have gone. Oh well, nothing to be done about that.
I had realized by then that I was not fully prepared mentally for the race but I knew that physically I would be fine. So I said a little prayer, God whatever you want me to do in this race is fine with me. Then I enjoyed the ride - a beautiful view of Miami from the top of a high bridge - life is good! I did not feel like I was doing a really fast bike, was passed by many but passed a few too. My bike is low end, I was admiring all the Treks, Specializeds, Felts and other fancy cycles, but my road bike is all I have so I was grateful for it too.
Transition to run went smoothly. Run is my greatest challenge. I wanted to keep steady, no walking. That is not usually a problem in a 5k, but I also hoped to keep my pace of a 10 minute mile. It was really hot and I stopped to walk while i took water at mile 1 and 2 and poured some over me, and ran non stop otherwise. Felt pretty good after the first half mile mark. Made a push at the end to sprint (for me) to the finish. ok, maybe my sprint looks like anther's jog, but we do what we can do.
Finished and felt good at the end, better than any other last season. I really hydrated the day before and that made a huge difference. I went to the food tent, had a bagel and cheese and fruit and met a few new friends, first time triathletes. I love the camaraderie of these events. Checked the race results posted and saw that I was 4th out of 4 in my age group. My time was very close to the first 3, so I felt ok yet disappointed that I was last in only 4. Packed up and left, feeling great overall.
Checked my emails after I got home and showered, and was thrilled and surprised to see that I had won a 3rd place medal in my age group, which had 9 overall in the group. Woohoo!!!
I had never thought that I might be in before somebody else in my group! lol! Should have stuck around for the medal ceremony. My family had another event going on that day or I would have.
Here are my race results:
Swim 7:31 pace 30:05 place 2
Bike 35:15 pace 16.68 place 4
Run 33:31 pace 10:48 place 3
What did I learn?
It ain't over til its allllll over!
My run is improving! 3 out of 9 - that's huge improvement over last season
Training pays off.
Mental prep would help - think through the whole race day the day before, allow time for set up.
I am now training for a half marathon for November 13th. I hope to do an olympic distance tri in December, and depending upon how hard I train for the run I will do it. I need to actually TRAIN to do all 3 sports faster. My past history is to simple practice the distances required. I am now reading all I can about the sports, and will incorporate speed training into all 3 disciplines. I love that I can improve, and I am ready to try.