Sunday, July 31, 2011

I Survived! First Triathlon Race Report

The swim was not pretty. I lined up with the 15:00+ swimmers. The comraderie of the ladies-only triathlon was pretty cool. We lined up for our time trial start, and before I was even close to starting, the first lady came out of the swim. All the participants waiting to start were clapping for everyone getting out--that was neat. I spotted Hubby and kids across the way waved and was off. I started off great, taking it slow. Then something happened... I don't know what it was, but I ran out of breath fast. After that I gave up all hope of swimming underwater, and I was in survival mode from there. I kept my head above water most of the time, and spent a lot of time on my back. It was like I forgot everything I learned. I probably would have been done sooner if I would have sucked it up and continued swimming underwater.

After the swim, we had to climb up a bunch of concrete stairs to the transition. Apparently I did really well in T1--I was third in my age group in transition. That's when you take your swim stuff off and get ready for the bike. I felt really good on the bike after the horrible swim. I went out pretty fast and passed a decent number of people. I think only 1 or 2 people passed me, but I know I passed at least one again. After riding the course on Thursday I was pretty familiar with the roads and it seemed to go by faster this second time. My overall pace was 15.5 mph, which isn't great, but it's pretty good for me. I went out hoping to go faster than a leisurely bike ride but not kill myself where I wouldn't be able to run. I'd say I succeeded there.

Transition 2 was a little crazier. There were more cyclists around me trying to get into T2 so it was a little congested. I am not skilled at the bike dismount either so that was not graceful. I got in, racked my bike and switched my helmet for my hat, grabbed my race number and took off... then I remembered I forgot to take my GPS watch off the bike. Luckily I didn't get very far. I grabbed that and headed off to the run. Hubby and kids were right around the corner cheering. I can still hear the familiar "Go, Mommy Go!" I love that sound--they make me smile whenever I hear it.

The run felt pretty good. My legs weren't as jelly-legged as I thought they would be. I noticed that one of my shoes was not tied very tight (I have the lock laces, so I just pulled them on without tightening them). I almost stopped but decided it wasn't bad enough. The first half/three-quarters of a mile were tough but after that it was smooth sailing. I actually ended up going fairly fast, I think my pace was 10:02, which is on the faster end for me. There were three water stops on the run, which is a lot for a 5k, but it was so hot that it was well appreciated. The final water stop was right around 2.5 miles and was manned by high school students. I was sort of half-joking, but I asked the kid to just throw the water at me and he did. He grabbed two cups and threw the ice cold water at me. It felt really good since it was probably 90 degrees at that point. As I rounded the corner I could see the finish line. My kids and Hubby were there again, cheering me on. It was awesome. I hear the announcer announce my name, which was pretty cool. I finished!

Overall it was a great experience. If I were to do another one, I have to improve on the swim A LOT. It was almost miserable. Just like I thought though, as soon as I was out of the water, I was good. Maybe I should have started with a Duathlon. Anyway, my first triathlon is in the books and done. I had fun (after the swim was over). I accomplished my two goals--1. Finish without drowning, and 2. Don't be last. I did pretty well. My overall time was 1:31:06 and I finished 26/34 in my age group. Not too bad, considering the size of the age group.

Here is a picture of me after the finish.. and I'm smiling!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Tri Eve

Tomorrow is the big day! I swam in the lake yesterday, first time in open water. It didn't go so well out of the gate. I've never swum in waves before and going out, I was headed straight for them. Between that and possibly going out to fast, something took my breath away and knocked the wind out of me. I tried to keep going, but it didn't last long. I swam back to shore and regained my breath. Then I turned around and headed the other way, with the waves. That was a lot better but I had to turn around so I stopped.

I picked up my packet today, checked out the quarry and swim area. I attended my "orientation" and heard all about the event. I'm still nervous as can be about the swim. Once I get beyond that, I should be okay, but it's the swim that will get me, if anything.

We'll see what tomorrow brings!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Course Preview

Today the family took a preview of Sunday's bike route together. It is a gigantic square, mostly farmland. We got a lot of interesting smells from those farms too. After touring the 11 mile bike route I ran a mile in the 90 degree heat. It actually wasn't too bad of a run. If it wasn't so darn hot, I would have run some more. It felt good to run.

I'm feeling a little better about Sunday's race now. I'm still a little worried about the swim, but tomorrow I will be swimming in open water so that should help ease my worry (I hope...).

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


Has anyone ever dreaded a race? I realized today that I'm not looking forward to this weekend's race very much. It's my first triathlon and I don't feel like I'm ready. Today was the first swim that I was actually able to swim the full 400 yards distance and that was because I told myself I had to. I have not swum (or is it swam?) in open water, I have not practiced my swim/bike transition, and I'm really nervous about the jelly legs on the run. I guess it's just more nervousness and lack of confidence that makes me dread this race. It was completely my idea to do this, but I wish I would have chosen one later in the season to give me more time to train.

I don't know... I'm sure I'll have fun once I get going but right now I can't wait for Sunday to be over....

Just finished my second to

Just finished my second to last swim before the tri and I actually made it through the 400 yards! Maybe I won't drown...

Monday, July 25, 2011

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Brick Workout

Today's brickout? Complete! The 30 minute bike ride was not difficult at all. The 15 minute run following the bike ride was a little difficult, not because of jelly legs. Because of the "excessive heat warnings" we've had here, I did everything inside at the Y. So, I ran for 15 minutes around a track that is 1/16 of a mile, only turning left. This is the total opposite of ALL the other times I've run on that track, so my ankles were not used to it. I really wanted to give up and not run as long, but I did it. I completed my training!

Tomorrow calls for a 35 minute run with a 14 minute tempo run in there. Looks like it'll have to be either treadmill run or the indoor track again. Tomorrow is supposed to be even hotter than today. Ugh!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Hopefully my blog will get

Hopefully my blog will get more exciting soon. I figured out how to post directly to my blog from my not-so-smart phone.

Why "I am Not a Runner" Still...

I've been told lately that I need to change my blog title... that I can't have run a half marathon and not be a runner... I'm not changing it. I still don't consider myself a runner. Why, you ask? Because I chicken out for any reason I can--the heat, my knee, my other ankle, I have a cold... and those are all reasons in one day! I can come up with a gazilion more NOT to run. If I don't have a specific training plan in mind, I won't push myself. Right now I'm training for this triathlon in less than two weeks (!!!!) and over the weekend I didn't want to run more than 20 minutes. It was hot and muggy, I was up in the hills instead of flatlands around my home and I had a cold.

You know, after I finished my half-marathon, I told hubby that I wanted to be able to just go out and run 6-7 miles whenever I wanted to and not worry whether I was able to or not. Now, I'm lucky to eke out 3 miles. I think my timing is wrong though. I wish I was able to run first thing in the morning, but I wake up so early for work as it is, that I refuse to get up any earlier. And on weekends I just want to sleep in.

What's this about my ankle and knee? I don't know. On one of my runs last week, my left knee started to hurt. Shortly after, my right ankle started to hurt. I thought it just needed stretched, but I had to keep stopping. I did something to them, but I don't know what. They felt a little better on the run this weekend, so I'm hoping they'll be okay next time I run.

Tomorrow I'm going to attempt a brick workout. I did a long bike ride (in the cool rain) on Sunday instead of a brick workout so I'm going to attempt to do my brick tomorrow instead. It'll be 30 minutes biking, then 15 minute run. I've done 30/10 but need to do more than that. I've read that the 10 minutes is what it takes to get past the jelly legs point and then I'll be able to run... we'll see.

On top of all that, it's been almost two full weeks that my ear is plugged. Not sure if it's still water or something else now. I had it clear for 24 hours then got plugged again in the shower. It's starting to crackle again now so hopefully it's clearing out. Wore ear plugs during my swim today. Worked out okay, no new water in ear. I probably looked like a dork--swim cap, goggles, nose plug (still can't get past that one), and now lovely ear plugs. 2 weeks to race day.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Where have I been?

It's been a while since I've posted... Life is getting in the way. Between the three kids, my training and hubby's training, it's getting difficult to find time to post.

Training seems to be going well. I've now had two swim lessons and I can see the progress I'm making. It took me about two weeks to get the basic technique down and I felt confident going back to the coach for another lesson. One of the major things I had to do was slow down. I get sloppy when I go fast and when I'm tired I try to go fast. If I take my time and go slow I get through the water just as fast because my form is a lot better.

Right now, I have water in my ear. My last lesson was on Wednesday night, and here it is Sunday afternoon, and I still have water in my ear. I have tried everything to get it out, but nothing seems to work. I guess I have to be patient and wait it out. In the meantime, I missed my swim on Friday. Instead I did Saturday and Sunday's workouts on Friday--30 minute run and my 45 minute bike ride. Tomorrow is supposed to be an off day but since I took the last two days off I will be doing something. I should be swimming, but with the water in my ear, I don't know what I should be doing. I might try it and see what happens.

Running-I haven't run more than 3.1 miles in a long time. That's all that I need to run for the triathlon, but I'm really missing the longer runs. I miss that time alone, I miss that sense of accomplishment, and I really miss what health benefits it has. I've put on a couple pounds since the 1/2 marathon, and although some people say they don't notice it, I do... and I don't like it.

Biking--going well. I figured it should take me about 45 minutes to do the 11 mile bike ride, hopefully less though. It's hard to tell since every time I go out around here, I have to go over an overpass, which slows me down a lot.

Brick workouts--these scare me. I have no problem riding the 11 miles... I have no problem running 3.1 miles... It's the two combined. So far I've only run 1 mile for a brick workout and my legs are like jelly. I go faster than I usually do in a 5k, but I get tired so quickly. Maybe it's been the heat since it's so hot and I'm in the sun the whole run, but I'm not sure if I'll be able to do it all after the bike portion of the race... which is after the swim portion... what am I getting myself into???