I could not have asked for a more beautiful day to kick off the 2006 triathlon season. It was gorgeous, and to make things even better, the rain we had gotten for the past two days caused the lake temperature to drop enough that wetsuits were indeed allowed - yay!
So my goal was to improve my times in all legs over last year's time. Mission Accomplished. I improved my time by almost 13 minutes over last year.
Am I content? Uh - NO. Not by a long shot. Let me tell you - those 30 - 35 year old females mean business. Last year I placed 5th in the 25-29 age group with a 1:57:06. This year I placed 5th in the 30-35 age group with a 1:44:30. Point taken...yeah, I still have a long ways to go.
So here's the run down. Bo and J.T. had been sick with a dreadful stomach virus the night before, so I loaded Briar up with me at 6:00 a.m. and we headed to the race. He went straight back to sleep, and we found out later he was about to come down with the virus as well. So I racked my bike, picked up my packet, got body marked and saw Michele. We were there early - which is what I wanted for a change. We had plenty of time to get our transition area set up and take in the atmosphere. The atmosphere got very happy when they announced that wetsuits would be allowed! About 7:45 I finally got my wetsuit on and got Briar to wake up and walk down to the start line with us. A few minutes after 8:00, my mom, dad and Holly showed up. As I was about to start, my Dad decided he needed me to point straight up in the air a few times while I was swimming so that he could know where I was at...I laughed, but after I got out there I got confident enough to do it - LOL - he never picked up on it, though. I'd say the rescuers in the kayaks got a kick outta the girl who pointed her finger straight up in the air on about every 15th stroke! The swim went well, and it felt so much easier in a wetsuit. Even though it was only .6 miles, it still felt awfully long. I spotted my family on the pier as I swam in, and Briar ran up to the transition area with me. I checked my watch after getting there and saw that I had broken 20 minutes. Cool. Official Swim Time: 19:43
I had a little trouble getting my wetsuit off over my chip, but finally did. Got suited up with helmet, shades, and bike shoes, shoved an Apple Cinnamon Hammer Gel in my pocket and took off. Official T-1 time: 1:58
The 16 mile bike felt good. Got passed by a few men, one of them being a coworker, but I kept him in sight. I think there were two women who passed me. There was this one guy, who was also riding a Quintana Roo like myself, that battled with me the whole way. I even thought I had lost him for like 8 miles, and he showed up again near the end!! It made it fun and interesting. I flipped through my computer after about 11 miles and saw that I was averaging 19.5 - wow! Then at about mile 13 I came upon a girl with a "34" marked on her leg (her age ofcourse), and I recognized her as someone I knew was in my age group, but that I didn't think I could compete with. So I hammered on the pedals, looked straight ahead, and blew by her. I didn't look back, but I kept thinking she wouldn't surrender that easy...I figured she'd be back...but I never saw her again. I gave myself an imaginary pat on the back and felt pumped. Even though I thought I was making great time, as I cruised into bike dismount area, I noticed I hadn't broken 50 minutes...so it wasn't all that great, but much better than last year. Official Bike Time: 50:42
As I racked my bike in T-2, I glanced at my watch to see 1:12. "Ugh - that's not good enough...get outta here and run!" I changed shoes and took off - forgetting to put on my race number belt (oops!). I saw my Mom, Dad, Briar and Holly shortly. Got a high 5 from Briar, and my mom ran down to the road cheering me on. Official T-2 Time:1:01
I purposely took it easy during the first 1/2 mile or so. I kept my heart rate down and let my legs adjust to the change. Then I started increasing my speed to a point I thought I could handle and tried to hold it there. I saw Michele after the 2 mile turn around...and all I could get out was "Go!Go!Go!" as I pointed at her. I still felt relaxed and just tried to keep increasing my speed as much as I could handle. When I saw the turn in to the finish, I was very happy...I turned on the speed and sprinted (if you can realy call it that) in for probaby the best 4 miles I've ever run in my life - either fresh or in a triathlon! Official Run Time: 31:07
Michele came in shortly after with a very strong finish and had a great race as well. There was an awesome post race party as usual. I'm pretty happy with my swim time, I think I should have done a little better on the bike, and I'm very happy with the run time. Now maybe I can improve all of them again next year.
And here is my own personal Race Day Photographer. Most call him The Flash. I call him Dad.
4 years ago