|70.3 miles ~ 6:50:58|
First, thank you for stalking me! I could feel you all checking on me! And thanks for the awesome comments the past few days. I am behind on reading your blogs, but promise I will get to them in the next few days!
The Swim ~ 1.2 miles ~ 46:55
|I love this shot. I am not out there, I am impatiently waiting to start.|
The hardest part of the swim was waiting to start. I was OK for the first 10 waves, but waiting for the next 7 waves (and watching the wind pick up a little) was torture. It was kind of overcast and cool, and much warmer to be in the water than out. I hung out in the water with other “late wavers” and watched people start their race.
Finally, it was time. I tried to line up on the outside so I could angle toward the turn buoy and miss most of the contact. Most of the other 200 women in the wave had the same idea, so I ended up right in the middle of everything. At that point, I didn’t really care I just wanted to get started.
There was some chop on the swim out that seemed to get worse the further out you went. It wasn’t huge or anything, just enough to make sighting was a bit tough – when I looked up I couldn’t see past the water and wave in front of me. I started following bubbles, but ended up inside one of the guide buoys, which was kind of a bummer. I decided I had to figure out a way to sight myself and eventually caught sight of a boat with a bright red light that I was pretty sure it was close to the turn buoy and I could see over the waves. I went for that.
I got into a rhythm but kept running into people who were stopping to sight. It was kind of a pain in the butt, going along and then WHAM! Someone stopped trying to figure out if they were on course. The wind was blowing toward us on the way out, so I felt progress was annoyingly slow. I got to the boat and had about 100 yards or so to the turn buoy, which I could see pretty well.
The rest of the swim is really uneventful. The waves were coming over my left side after the first turn buoy, so I just took my breaths mostly on my right. Sighting was much easier. After the second turn buoy the wind was at my back. I feel like I came in pretty quickly from there, sighting on a tent on the beach.
|Coming out of the swim.|
|Running to transition|
I liked this. I hadn’t been stripped before. People around me were dropping to the ground and getting their wetsuits pulled off. I made eye contact with a guy and laid down, put my feet in the air and said “strip me baby!”
He did and I thanked him, told him he was great.
Those last two sentences sound like they are straight out of a cheesy smut novel.
ANYWAY, he handed me my wetsuit and I ran toward my bike.
T1 ~ 2:23
I am happy with this, I think I was quick, I like riding sockless now and that saves some time.
Bike ~ 56 miles ~ 3:30:20
Eh. I don’t know what happened here. I mean, I am fine with this time but thought I would be closer to 3:15. Next time.
I took a gel as soon as I could on the bike, and drank often. The first 15 or so miles of this course are hilly, and I planned on just recovering from the swim and hammering on the flats. The course seemed really empty. I wasn’t passing people or getting passed, just had a few people ahead of me and behind me. I knew my swim was around 45 minutes, but I didn’t think I was last out of the water or anything.
I saw Andy and Chrissie heading in from their bike, they looked awesome, I hollered to them both.
Once I got to the hill at mile 10 I passed a few folks. I got passed by a few folks too. I have been working on hills all summer and apparently I need to keep it up. I am better than I was last year, but still am not very quick on the climb. I have no trouble climbing, I am just not very quick.
I ate a Lara bar at mile 15 and cruised on the false flat downhill. I saw lots of people on the return and didn’t feel so alone. I passed some more people which felt good, and when I looked down at my computer I was always in the 20’s as far as speed. I was starting to see and pass some guys heading the same way as me, so I felt like I was making some progress.
I was really sick of the stupid sports drink I had and picked up a water at one of the exchanges about 35-40 miles in. I felt great but wasn’t going very fast – averaging about 16mph. There was a bit of a headwind with the occasional crosswinds, plus it is a false flat uphill on the way back, but I still thought I should be pushing more speed.
I don’t remember much more detail besides I took another gel, I passed some more people, and I hit 40mph twice on the descents. I wasn’t really ready to get off the bike yet, so I think my training there is solid, I just need to get stronger.
I slipped out of my shoes and pedaled into transition with my feet on top. That was a first for me in a race, I was glad it worked. I ran to transition feeling with my legs feeling pretty good.
T2 ~ 2:41
Yeah, I am OK with that. I need to get speed laces.
Run ~ 13.1 miles ~ 2:28:39
The plan was to take it easy and get my running legs on. I felt pretty good, I felt like running. I walked the water stations so I could drink, and dumped water on my head at every station. The turn around station was my favorite, they had pretzels.
I started talking to this random guy who was on his 2nd loop, and we ran together for about a mile or so. Then I kind of had a problem.
I had to pee. But I really didn’t want to stop.
I couldn’t pull the trigger. Maybe I can hold it, I think.
Nope, I can’t.
I grabbed a big water from a water station and dumped it on my head. I looked around and realized no one is really paying any attention to me anyway, they are all dealing with their own crap. So I let it fly.
It was awesome. I couldn’t stop after that. I think I peed myself like 3-4 times on that run, laughing whenever I did, waving as people told me they liked my smile. If they only knew.
|Heading out for 2nd lap|
I felt good as I headed into the second lap (they call it a loop, I say it is a lap), but I just couldn’t get my legs to go any faster. I didn’t want to stop, I hated stopping at the water stations, but knew I needed to keep getting fuel and food in me. I had 2 gels, 1/2 banana, 1/2 powerbar, and some pretzels on the run. I drank water, I couldn’t handle anymore sweet stuff.
The second lap was kind of lonely. There were not a lot of people left out there. One of the downsides of a late swim start I guess. I gain my energy at races from the people around me, making them feel better makes me feel good. The plan to “turn it up” in the last 5k wasn’t happening. Peeing was happening though, so that is a success. I was just chugging along at a steady pace.
I think this is mostly because I didn’t start run training really until mid-July – the injury kept me from running from before the Sugarloaf Marathon in May through mid-July when it really was back to normal. So I think more running would have helped here.
I neared the end of the 2nd loop, I heard my name. I turned into the finish chute with a big smile running hard to the finish (where does that come from and where the hell is it at mile 9?). I did the Blais roll through the finish and the guy announced it, which was really cool.
|This one is for you Jon Blais.|
|Wahoo! Where is the beer?|
I am happy with how I did in this race overall. I know I have some things to work on, but I approached this race to have fun first (I did that) and to finish in under 7 hours (did that too). I had a pie in the sky goal of 6:30, but whatever I am really happy with my race and now have something to build on.