Sunday, 23 June 2013

I am OFFICIALLY a TRIATHLETE

This weekend I completed Race #2 and Race #3 in my Race Trifecta. And Race #2 was my very first Triathlon! It is pretty safe to say that I had a blast, and I am officially hooked! I loved every second out there on Saturday!

I finished in 2:22:20
You might remember my goal was to finish between 2:00-2:30, so 2:22 is right there. It was my very first triathlon, so this little cyborg is happy with that! Let's break it down shall we?

The Swim - 750m 
Time: 18:52
Everyone talks about how the swim is the worst part of the Triathlon, but I went into the water feeling pretty good. I would even go so far as to say I felt confident. I used to swim competitively in high school and I grew up around water, so I had no fear going in. But training in a pool and swimming in open water are two very different things. I was so very wrong about this one.

I was frazzled to begin the race. I did not give myself adequate time to register, prep my transition station, and get down to the water for warm-up. I was running around like a crazy person. I made it down to the water and started to warm-up with only about 10 minutes to the start. I soon realized that I needed to wear the red swim cap they had given me at registration, not the black one I had brought down with me. So I quickly sprinted back to the transition area to grab my cap. I literally made it back to start line with seconds to spare - not exactly how I imagined starting things off.
I am the second from the right with pink sleeve. Got my red cap!
Time to get in
The Welland Triathlon had a staggered start, which meant that we all lined up based on our bib numbers and age categories and started in the water 30 seconds apart. It was a good way to start for a newbie like me. But even with the staggered start and a wetsuit, the swim was tough.

The water was freezing and took my breath away. It was hard to get myself going in a good rhythm. And in open water there are no handy-dandy lines to follow and keep you straight. I spent much of the first half of the swim zig-zagging all over the place and trying to catch my breath. The first 350m felt like torture. I eventually got myself sorted out, got my tracking under control, and finished my swim. The first part of my Triathlon was complete.

The Bike - 30km
Time: 1:15:06
The transition between the swim and bike was a 500m run, which felt long in my bare feet. I felt really heavy coming out the water so that made this transition even worse. I wiggled out of my wetsuit, threw on my shoes, grabbed a Clif Bar Shot, a swig of water, and ran my bike out the transition area.

The bike was probably the part I was most nervous about, because I just had no idea what to expect. I had only ridden my bike once before the race, so the biking portion was all new to me. The course was flat and I felt surprisingly good out there.

It took about 10km to get myself into a comfortable gear and really find my groove, but when I did I felt really good. I popped another Clif Bar Shot around 18km and powered on home. In hindsight I really should have pushed the pace more here, but I wasn't sure how I should pace myself before my run. I opted to stay comfortable and save myself for the run.

The Run - 7.5km
Time: 47:46

The run was pretty much what I expected. My legs were heavy when I got off the bike, but my goal was to try to run a 6:30km pace. And according to my watch my average pace was 6:31 so pretty much bang on what I had hoped.

It was hot and humid on the run, and the course offered very little shade. I did my best to take in water whenever it was offered, and I took a third Clif Bar Shot to help keep my energy up. I saw a lot of folks walking throughout the run portion, so it felt good to be able finish strong. I was definitely happy when I crossed the finish line.

After the race I met up my parents who had come to cheer me on, the member of the Clif Bar team who were keeping all of us Triathletes fed and happy, and Phaedra from Blisters and Black Toenails (<---who was a ROCKSTAR and placed 1st in her age category! She is hardcore like that)


We waited around for the times to be posted (**which is how I ended up with these. I still can't find them online, and I was curious about transitions**). I rehydrated for a little while, and then just like that my first triathlon was complete! Time sure does fly when you are having fun!

I am currently trying to figure out how I can cheaply purchase my own road bike and how soon I sign up for my next one! And advice or recommendations?

Thanks for coming on this crazy journey with me friends!
Love your Favourite Darwinian Fail,
Krysten