First off, I should probably apologize to you all for leaving you hanging in suspense for so long for my race results. I am sure no one has gotten a THING done today waiting on me to get this report written.
This has been a very busy week trying to wrap up all the details of my last week of assignments and papers to be written for school. As of last Sunday, I had only to write up 6 lengthy written assignemnts, take 3 tests and a final exam for my last 2 classes (Community Nursing and Intro to Theater), and write a large, involved project paper for my last Nursing class. I somewhow managed to wrap it all up. At about 2100 tonight, I finally submitted my last paper which ended up being 25 pages of written work and more than 40 hours of writing and research. I am exhausted and my brain is completely numb, but sending in that last paper is my last task for completing the requirement for a B.S. in Nursing from Ball State University. Graduation will take place next weekend in Muncie Indiana. Even as tired as I am now I could cartwheel around my entire yard to finally be done. For this last 2 classes this summer I have entirely lacked in the motivation department, so I am ecstatic to have finally finished up. I might even try to find time to read a book that I did not purchase from a textbook library.
And now for the moment you have all been waiting for .............. (drumroll please) ........ the race report from the Janesville YMCA Triathlon yesterday. The day started well. I got up, got dressed polished off some cranberry oatmeal and tried to move the slow men in my household out the door at a reasonable time. (have you ever heard that women were slow? the opposite is true at my house.... I sat in the car waiting for everyone else to come outside when it was time to leave)
Mike was obviously on the verge of a nervous breakdown and watching him made me nervous for him. My mission was to remain as calm as possible and try to de-escalate his anxiety by being calm and comforting myself. So we drove down to Lions Beach, unpacked our stuff, picked up our packets, got marked, and set up our transition areas next to each other. We talked for a while to the SWAT members hanging around, said hi to my sister and her kids, chatted with my mom and some friends and before long it was time to hit the beach.
Mike and I stood together. he was in wave 7, I was in wave 9. After some race instructions we couldn't hear, they started us off. I watched folks swim out in heats of 30. It didn't seem to look all that far and they had a lane marker strung out to the turnaround buoy. I saw all kinds of chaos out there - breast strokers, sidestrokers, backstrokers, and some unidentifiable strokes. With the small waves, it looked like the takeoff was going to be manageable. I got Mike into the water and watched him swim out. It hit me then - I was going to do this and Mike's fate was in his own hands now.
As I waited for my heat, I worked myself up into a real lather. I lost sight of Mike and got worried. Then I started worrying about myself. Before long we took off. The water was cold and I was worked up. I got kicked in the chest as we waded out to where I couldn't touch anymore. I started out with a breaststroke, but when I tried to put my face in the water, I got panicky. I couldn't see a thing. My heart raced, I couldn't catch my breath and I was freezing. Mentally I tried to calm myself as I tried to move forward. It took me until I reached the buoy to finally gain control of my faculties. I found myself stuck between a freestyler that was weaving all over and I couldn't get around and a chick doing the elementary backstroke. On my right the weaver was ramming me, on my left the elementary chick wa kicking me like an eggbeater. I finally swerved way out and got ahead of them, hopefully for good. The last half of the way back I found my groove. By the time I realized I was close, I stood up and I was only in water up to my knees. I ripped off the goggles and cap and started running up the beach. I couldn't find anyone I recognized but I could hear the SWATs screaming my name. Man, they sure know how to make you feel like a rock star. I was looking around for a face who could tell me if Mike was out of the water and someone shouted "your husband just got out - he's maybe a minute ahead of you!" I was so happy to hear he was safe and had gotten the swim done. I ran up the beach and tackled him in transition with a hug and a peck and got to getting the transition thing done.
Here is where I dicovered I had not remembered to prep my shoes. I fought with the ratchet on my bike shoes, unable to get the quick release to release and let me get my Flintstone feet into them. They finally relented and I got them on, I picked up the gloves and threw them on the ground, threw on my belt and took off.
The bike was awesome and I got to pass folks right and left. one guy pulled up to me about halfway through and said "If you didn't notice I was just drafting off you for a while." He sat on my wheel and really started to piss me off so I took off ahead of him every time he tried to keep drafting. what an ass. I finally told him to stop it and took off. I was trying to see his number to report the draft, but I never was able to get it. The bike was really windy and the course was backwards from how we practiced, but I still knew it and felt really comfortable giving it all I had. I love the bike and I knew it was my only shot at making up time.
I got back to transition and started power changing. In the picture below I was asking the SWATs and my family type folks where Mike was. They said I just missed him and I remember saying "Now I'll never kick his ass!" and my mother kidding me about saying ass. I hollered back that if she had been listening better earlier she could have heard me say the F word. I remember hearing Lucas say "Oh my God I just heard my gramma say ass."
On that note I took off and laughed to myself all the way up the street. i was so twitterpated I forgot to grab my Garmin for the run off my handlebars. and my Ipod. RATS! that made for a long run with no tunes for cadence control and no idea how fast I was going.
The run sucked, plain and simple. I.HATE.RUNNING.
but it was the last 4 miles of the race so I sucked it up and went as fast as I could stand. People passed me right and left anyway, men, women, children, turtles, you name it. Trying to amuse myself without and Ludacris to listen to, I searched for a phrase to describe getting passed by so many . I remembered a RWOL post lamenting getting "chicked" at races (passed by women) and decided my version was called getting chiched and dicked. I approached the turn into Lions Beach preparing myself mentally to be able to see the finsh line and then get redirected out another mile before actually finishing. Whoever designed that has a cruel streak..... it was helpful to know I just had a mile left so I gave it all I had until I got to the finish. Final time on my watch 1:51:00, -about 10minutes for the swim shore to shore, 51:00 on the Garmin for the bike, and the rest was run and transition time. it was about what I had figured on, a little too long for the run but that is so variable from day to day that I just take what I can get. There were people behind me so I was not last, which is alwasy good.
Got packed up and headed home after some visiting, feeling pretty good about the whole thing.
After a while Martin called to tell me I took second place in the Athena group, with Allison in first place. So now I was not only an official traithlete, I was also sporting some bling. Sweet.
My brother in law Jeff and his brother Brad did the tri too and kicked butt. We went to a party in the afternoon at Brad's house, then joined the SWAT team at the Speakeasy for dinner. What an awesomely fun day. I had a blast (and I think I ate one of everything, but who cares? ).
Now for the thank yous -
Thanks to my boys for coming to root us on and take pictures
Thanks to my sister Michele for spotting Mike on the swim and helping him feel comfortable in the water, for supporting us, and all the million things she does to help us out and support us on race days
Thanks to my mom (pictured) for coming to cheer us on.
(Just in case you didn't know it, my family totally rocks)
Thanks to the SWATs for the support during practice times and for rolling out the ROCK STAR treatment before, during, and after the race. You have no idea how much that means to me and how motivational it is to have a cheering section.
Thanks too to all of you who read me and sent encouraging words, help, and support.
And let me not forget to thank the academy..........
(if I forgot to mention anyone, I didn't mean to)
here are the results: 170/224 overall, 2/3 Athena ---> swim- 10:50 (135th) bike+T1- 54:24 (109th) Run +T2- 46:15 (194th) = Final time 1:51:27
What I learned:
- I need to practice open water swimming........ alot.
- I can't forget to prep my shoes again. undo the bike shoes, untie the double knots on my running kicks.
- Do something different with the Garmin and Ipod. They make a big difference on the run
- swim 2 minutes faster than Mike so next time *I* win............ (you listening big guy? Bring it on!)
Part 2 of our 6-Day State Parks Trip
4 hours ago