Life is too short to be bored

Triathlon Time

On Cinco de Mayo, while many of you were sipping margaritas and eating guacamole, I competed in my second triathlon (don’t worry I made up for that later).

The distance this time:

1/2 mile swim

15 mile bike

4 mile run

Totally do-able, right?

Riiiight.

Each distance was just a little longer than my previous race and it was held at the same place. So I figured that with one tri under my belt this one shouldn’t be that much harder.

1/2 mile Swim begins at the triathlon

The 1/2 mile swim in the lake begins.

Goals for this race were as follows:

1. Finish

2. Don’t stop

3. Do not feel sick

4. Smile and enjoy the scenery

I am happy to report that I accomplished all my goals!

This race was tougher than my first for different reasons. First off, it’s much earlier in the year and the lake was much colder! Almost every contestant had a wetsuit on. As a kind of after thought I grabbed my spring suit that I had never swam in. (spring suit = no sleeves or short sleeves and shorts) But boy I was so thankful I had at least that to supplement my tri suit. The weather overall was also colder, which I will take, compared to just the day before where the 1/2 Iron Man contestants battled 90 degree heat.

The bike ride was four miles longer than the one I had done previously. And for some reason those extra 2 miles each way were the roughest road! I was so scared I was going to get a flat tire on one of the huge pot holes I got real good at looking ahead for. (One woman did get a nasty flat but she still finished!)

This race was also co-ed, while my first was all women. I was nervous about how this would change the energy of the race. Honestly though, I didn’t notice. All the guys who were competing for time were way ahead of me and I only saw them as they zipped past me on their ride back in.

I also spent a good portion of the race worried about my friend who was also competing. I knew I was out of the water first, but then I never saw her on the bike ride. All kinds of terrible situations rolled through my head. But then on my ride back in I saw her on the run, safe on land. She yelled she would explain. When we met up on the run she told me she finished the swim but didn’t have time to complete the whole bike course so they told her to turn around and then start the run.

I am so proud of her for completing the swim. It was one of the toughest swims I have done and I spent years on swim teams and in lifeguard training. She is new to swimming! And she had no wet suit! The lake was such a beast that there were guys in their 30s who looked buff and in shape that had to be towed out. And she did it like a champ, and came out with a smile on her face.

I am so proud of us both for committing to doing this race. Showing up pumped (and scared). Getting in that cold water, and coming out again. Getting on that bike. Doing the run. And finishing the race with a smile and a new determination to rock it harder next year.

Some FAQS about Triathlons:

1. What is the order of competition?

After the race. A little snack and some warmers clothes and we are all smiles.

After the race. A little snack and some warmer clothes and we are all smiles.

Swim, Bike, Run. Always. So nobody drowns.

2. What is the distance?

They vary. Sprint, Olympic and Ironman are three common categories of race. Sprints are shorter. Olympic is the middle distance. Ironman is the longest at a total of 70.3 miles. Start with a 2.4 mile swim, then a 112 mile bike and then for good measure, go run a marathon- 26.2 miles.  There is also a half Ironman distance at, you guessed it, 35.1 miles.

3. What kind of bike do you have?

Just a simple road bike that gets the job done and has Shimano shifters. It’s a Trek 1000. Aluminum. Blue.

4. Do you have bike shoes?

No, I do not have clip in shoes. Nor do I wear tight bike shirts with sponsors names. But I do rock a fanny pack from time to time. And always wear my helmet. Read Just Ride by Grant Petersen for why you do not need clip in shoes.

Got any more questions? Just ask!

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Comments on: "Triathlon Time" (4)

  1. Great post! I did my first sprint distance triathlon a few years ago in MD – it was the Iron Girl. My next one is right around the corner in July and I have yet to train in open water – yikes!

  2. Nice job!! Congrats on your finish. I am doing my frist Sprint Tri in a few weeks.. any advice for a newbie? 🙂 I’m so worried about the transitions.

    • Hi xxjaym! Thanks for reading and for the support. Transitions can seem overwhelming because there’s a lot to remember. Get all your stuff ready the day before the race and lay it out on a towel in swim, bike, run, race order and look at the stuff and visualize putting it on for each event. Then practice with the stuff. Obviously putting on a cap and goggles with dry hair is no fun but go through the motions. And then motion taking it off while running back to your towel and drying off your feet, putting on socks etc. Do the whole thing.

      And don’t stress about the time. For your first time, you’re not trying to beat everyone, you’re just racing yourself right? So an extra 30 seconds double knotting your shoes or double checking you have your sunglasses won’t hurt your time but would be uncomfortable without it or worse if you left the trans area without them.

      You tube videos are helpful too. http://pinterest.com/pin/109845678382602301/

      Let me know if you have more questions and good luck!

  3. I was going to suggest that you bring some of your cupcakes to our class potluck. Maybe some belated Cinco de Mayo food? But looks like this is a triathalon blog site. Oh well, just bring something healthy. Best of luck on all future fitness feats. #cs5711

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