I did it! I completed my first sub-sprint triathlon yesterday in 55:44 and came in 83 out of 105 overall. I didn't drown and met all my goals! w00t!
But the best part is that I got to share this awesome experience with Kelly and MaryLynn. I think it's awesome how take turns freaking out so there is always at least one to talk the others off the ledge :) We make a great team, and we're considering doing a triathlon relay together real soon!
Due to the low water level in the lake, this really should have been called a duathlon with a water run =P This was a very small, low key race; I'd say it was the tri equivalent of a fun run. We didn't even have numbers, so no bibs or body markings :( But what we did have was tons of fun and a great workout. I am already hooked and in search of my next full sprint tri!
Jason and I woke up at 4 am, had the car loaded, and were on our way to Clermont before 5 am. As we approached the park, MaryLynn called saying it was pitch black with no one around, and she did not know where to go, so she waited for us at the guard house. We made the trek together into the park to find the transition area. It was a LONG way and very dark. We finally found them and began unloading our stuff. We got there before 6 and had our pick of bike racks, so all 3 of us had our bikes next to each other.
Swim + T1 = 10 minutes (estimate)
What swim? They were not kidding about the water level on the lake being low. We couldn't really swim and just walked/jogged most of the way, though I did try swimming a bit to get a taste of what it would be like swimming when there is no visibility. I am not even sure this was 1/4 mile as the marker--an inflatable alligator--was upon us before we knew it.
Bike = 6.7 miles in 25:51 @ 15.6 mph
I pushed hard and was making good time, even beating my average pace from last time, but then I hit the hills and I lost a lot of time. I did manage to pass quite a few people, including some men! After the last turn around, it finally dawned on me to get into a high gear and peddle on the downhills and use that momentum to go up the next hill. That worked and managed to get my average pace back up to 15.6 mph but it was too late to make up much more time. Clearly, I need to do some hill training before the next one. Overall, I'm pleased with my performance on the bike course. Here is a graph of the hills:
Run = 1.5 in 17:56 @ 11:43 min/mile
The run went much better than at the duathlon and I ran the whole time! I was tired but determined to gut it out for the short 1.5 mile run. I took it easy for the first half and simply shuffled along and slowed my pace when I felt the need to walk. After the initial minute or so at 9-10 pace, I settled into a 12ish pace. After the turn around, I tried to pick up speed a bit and managed to average under 12, but I didn't have enough in me for much more than that.
They gave us a popsicle stick with a number as we finished. That corresponded to our standing and we could match it to our official time on a piece of paper. I came in 83/105, which means I beat 22 people! We were exhausted, but thrilled at what we had accomplished. MaryLynn had to head back home, but the rest of us went to Cracker Barrel for a much deserved breakfast feast!
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