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Tune Up Tri

March 26, 2012

 

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100 Miles for HHT – Donation Page
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Yesterday was the Tune Up Tri!  My first triathlon of the year and my second triathlon ever!  I have now raced 5.5 miles, on my way to racing 100 miles for HHT during 2012.  5.5 down … 94.5 miles to go! 😉

The day started at 4:15am.  Well let’s be honest, the alarm went off at 4:15, I didn’t actually get out of bed until about 4:30am.  Luckily I packed Saturday night and already had my bike loaded into the car.  Puppy didn’t want to get up either, the only way I got her out of bed was by coaxing her with food!

While taking Puppy outside I discovered it was about 10 degrees cooler than I was expecting and misting/raining.  Moving to my backup plan, I grabbed a long sleeve shirt out of the laundry.

After taking Puppy out and feeding her breakfast, I left the house.  When I got to the race site, the parking lot was mostly empty.  One great thing about this race is the parking.  Of all the things to worry about on race morning, for this race, parking isn’t one of them (I don’t think the lot ever filled).  Since I didn’t attend packet pickup Saturday the first thing I did was pick up my race packet.

In addition to my number there were two Hammer Gels!  Hello breakfast!

I immediately attached my number to both bike and helmet and headed to set up my transition area.

This year, the transition area was first come, first serve.  To avoid the issues I had last year during transition, aka ‘where’s my bike?’, I chose a bike rack in the corner.  Probably not the ideal spot to choose, but at least I wouldn’t be wandering around aimlessly searching for my stuff.

I also remembered from last year to bring a plastic bag to put my helmet and goggles for transition.  Enter my Marine Corps Marathon packet pickup bag!

The bag over the seat is just a regular grocery bag.

Once my transition area was set up, and I was positive I hadn’t forgotten anything I went back inside the complex.  I immediately found where they were handing out timing chips and where they were body-marking.  They had about 8 volunteers body-marking, so even though the line was really long, it moved really fast.

     

I couldn’t believe how quickly I was able to get everything done.  All that was left to do, was warmup.  Since my bike was already setup in transition, I went for a quick run around the parking lot.  As soon as I started running I felt fast, not fast fast because I’m a slow runner, but fast for me.  I finished my warmup and headed in for the pre-race meeting.

The pre-race meeting was a little longer than I thought was necessary, but they did say it was deliberate to allow the sun to come out a little more before the race started.  Can’t say I blame them for that.  The national anthem was played and then it was time to race!

I was in wave 2 to start.  Five minutes of bouncing around trying to keep myself loose and warm later we were off.  I settled into my fast warmup pace and really tried to push myself.  The run felt great, my breathing was a little labored but I just kept telling myself it was a race and to keep pushing!  Right from the start I kept passing people.  I’d pick someone ahead of me and focus on passing them, then I’d pick someone else and pass them too.  Next thing I knew the run was over and it was time for the bike.  I walked through the transition area to my bike, got my helmet on, and walked my bike out of transition.  I knew I should be running, but I didn’t want to trip over my bike and thought it would be better in the long run to have a minute to catch my breath.

Once on the bike, it took two tries to get my right foot placed on the pedal correctly, and then another second or two to remember which gear I had left the bike in (I deliberately left it in an easy gear to start).  In an effort not to embarrass myself again, I put it in the hardest gear I thought I could maintain and just kept going.  Just like the run, I felt fast.  I kept telling myself the same thing I had during the run ‘it’s a race, it’s ok to push yourself’.  While no one passed me during the run, 4 people passed me on the bike, but one I passed back, so really only 3 people.  I tried to keep going faster up until I hit the end of the bike.  Then I slowed down to safely get off the bike; I had visions of myself falling while trying to get off the bike and was determined to not let that happen!  I ran the bike back to my transition spot and got ready for the swim.

Just like last year the wet pavement was cold and my feet started to go numb, but not to the extent of last year when it was snowing.  I ran into the building, then had to walk on the pool deck.  I got in the water and started my swim.  That’s when things started to go downhill.  I inhaled water during my third (of ten) length of the pool.  What I needed to do was stop, cough it out, and catch my breath, but I didn’t want to stop moving.  So I kept pushing myself forward, but I never felt comfortable during the swim after that.  My swim time was only a minute slower than it was last year, but I’m still a little disappointed it didn’t go as well as the run and bike.

Overall I had a great race and I’m really happy with myself.  I took 4 minutes off my time from last year!  For whatever reason, I decided to stay for the awards ceremony.  I’m glad I did because … I won my age group!  I was so surprised when they called my name.  I never win anything in races.

 

If I had finished with the same time last year, I wouldn’t have even been top 3 in my age group.  But as Hubby pointed out, their loss!  Overall this was a great race, well-organized, and the perfect start to the triathlon season.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. April 2, 2012 8:47 am

    Great post! Congratulations on winning your age group in the Tri! Very impressive!!! -CFC

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