Woman of Steel Triathlon, take two.
This was the first tri I did. Two years ago. I was excited to get a chance to race this course again and had a couple of specific things in mind.
I wanted to beat my time from the last time around.
I wanted a better bike time. Last time my chain came off at the bottom of the big hill. I ended up walking up the hill because I couldn't get enough momentum in my (then) weak legs to bike it up after getting off. So, I wanted to kill the hill.
Lastly, I wanted to KILL my previous run time. Considering that this was my first race ever and I've got a couple of years of running under my belt, this shouldn't have been hard. Also since I walked way too much of the run last time and I planned to actually run the whole thing this time, I figured that should help.
I just wasn't feeling that "woo-hoo!! RACE!!" feeling though, so I just kind of went with the flow and aimed for fun. I can say that I definitely had fun! Made a few new friends, got some great pictures and thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful weather that has been lacking here lately.
Now, with my apologies to those of you who are averse to midsection skin, pictures!
My girls came along this time to be my cheer squad and snap some photos.
It was really fun to have them there. I LOVE that Malia wore my race shirt from last time around. Too cute. I did miss Aaron being along, but since his current school shift for Fridays (clinicals) puts him home at 330 and I was leaving at 530, I figured I'd be a good wife and let him sleep. At least for a little longer than 2hrs. He did make me a sign and parked it next to my bike so that I saw it before I left.
What a sweetie!
I was struggling with what to wear (yes, that's the most important part of a race sometimes) since I'm not digging how the tri shorts fit right now. Yes it's the same way they fit when I first wore them. Not flattering as previous pictures have proven. I have gone the skirt route for all things running, so after a practice swim in a run skirt, I decided to go for it. With a cropped tri top.
The traditional bicep picture. And me looking like I'm going to bite someone's ear off or something. Yes those are sweats under my skirt. It was chilly. Look at the snow on those mountains still!
The swim started with a 45 minute stand along the pool. Again.
The wait was no shocker, even though I lined up way ahead of where I did last time. Which apparently some others did as well.
Here I am getting in the pool. This was actually the fastest part of my swim. Seriously. I didn't zoom in for a close up on the 8 baby abs. You're welcome. (but really, they're lookin' pretty good!)
There were three times when we just stood there in the pool behind some woman who really shouldn't have lined up where she did.
Last time my swim was 7:49. My times over the past month had been just over 7, so I was hoping for a just under 7 swim. 8:39. Ouch. Thank you standing in the pool for killing my swim time.
After dashing from the pool I sat down to get my bike shoes on and then though "meh, not concerned about transition times. No rush!" Which was evident by my 4+minute transitions. ha! Yes I took my sweet time between the bike/run too.
The bike was great. I felt good with the number of people I passed and I even lapped one gal. Yes I just said gal. No walk of shame, no chain coming off, good enough average pace. Having only biked twice this year, both in the week before the tri (good prep, I know) I wasn't sure how my legs would hold out so I didn't really push it. In hindsight I wish I would have pushed it harder. I could've shaved a few more minutes off the bike, if not more like 5.
After another nice slow transition I set out on the run-legs feeling nice and fresh! This was great.
The high five from Alaina was great too.
It was really nice to run past a lot of people, and a big confidence boost to pass so many. I had a lot of fun with it-and with the photographers, coming out with some priceless pictures that I would share with you but they finally got smart and locked down their site so you can't copy and paste the photos anymore. Picture me with my arms waving in the air while I scream.
Yep, I had fun.
If you are desperate for entertainment or suffering from insomnia I dare you to go search out there till you find them.
I may actually have to suck it up and spend the $11 on a finish line picture because they actually took a couple of really good ones-a first for me. My girls didn't get any because they had left the camera on all day and the battery died right before I showed up at the finish. There was this cell phone picture
There I am! Better than nothing!
In the end I took 5min off my last bike and a full 10 minutes off my run. Granted that says more about how out of shape I was 2yrs ago vs how in shape I am this year, but it was nice to see. It was a little short of the 5k it was supposed to be, but to pull in just past 26 minutes after biking was encouraging as I am hoping for a 25min 5k in a couple of weeks. (i can't believe I just admitted that out loud. Yikes.) It was really nice to feel stronger on this race this time, and it was a noticeable difference!
Though I was thrilled with my finish time that afternoon, I have done nothing but beat myself up over it since then. Looking back I wish I would have pushed harder on both the bike and the run and the swim....well, there's not much you can do when five people are at a standstill in front of you. Oh well, part of the race game I guess. The transitions make me laugh, but irritate me because if I would have had my head in the game I could have taken 2min off each and another 4min off my finish time.
But hey, new friends, fun atmosphere.....there's always next time around to worry about my time.
And my sweet wonderful husband? He got up, got the other 6 kids ready to go and headed out as quick as possible to get to the race for my finish. Though he missed it by just a few minutes, the fact that he tried so hard to be there at the end with all the kids after his super long day (Friday is a 23hr day for him-nice huh?) and little sleep was just absolutely adorable. He is fabulous.