Monday, August 17, 2009

Charleston Sprint Triathlon Race Report

Bottom line: was harder than I thought, but I loved it and am ready to go again!

So let me start by telling you guys what our training was like for this. We did, if I remember correctly, a total of 4 swims and 4 bike rides with one of those being a swim/bike brick and one being a bike/run brick. And of course we've been running pretty consistently so that part was well-trained-for...the rest not so much. I say we were blissfully ignorant. We knew we weren't trained adequately to do well, but also knew it was pretty much our last shot this season if we wanted to do one and we decided that we did, if nothing else just to finish it, see what the sport is all about and see if it's something we're interested in pursuing further...and I think it is! This particular sprint is really short: 0.3 mile swim, 13 mile bike, 3.1 mile run. So a grand total of 16.4 miles, I have to say that after doing it, I respect the distance. It didn't seem like it would be that difficult, but in hindsight I have more respect for the seemingly short distance than before the race.

Sunday morning we got up early, loaded the car and headed to the park where it was held. We got everything set up as best we knew how for transitions, got our numbers drawn on and laughed at how we had no idea how it would go.

Swim: My awesomely huge muscles weigh quite a bit, so I was able to register for the Athena division (insert sarcastic tone here). I thought I would still be with my age group, but nope...the Athenas (females >150lbs) were grouped in with the 40+ age group. So here I am with all the super fit golden oldies, and I overhear this awesome conversation.
FOL1 (fit older lady #1): So how old are you?
FOL 2: 66
FOL1: Do you still have that boyfriend?
FOL 2: Yes, I do. I'm not really in love with him but he's so sweet and we have fun together, and ooeee he is sexy.
I hope I can be as fun and life-loving as these ladies when I'm in my 60s!
My wave started about 10 minutes before Rich, so I kissed him good luck and got in the lake (aka dog-park pond). The swim turned out to be much tougher than expected. I think what made it harder was the dark, murky water and swimming so near other people. I didn't realize how many times I would get kicked/splashed/etc. Plus my goggles fogged up, which has never happened on any of my (4) training swims. I didn't freak out about not being able to touch as I was afraid I might, but I definitely did at least half the swim on my side or back. It was ugly, but I got out of the pond in one piece. It took me about 15 minutes.

T1: 3:00, not sure what took so long. I dried my feet, put on socks and running shoes (we don't have road bikes/clips), helmet, ate a gu and was off.

Bike: Number of times I heard "On your left"=>100. Number of times I said "On your left"=3. Take that you 3 people slower than me! I was really really wishing for a road bike, because I just physically cannot go as fast on my hybrid. The bike was a flat out and back and it was great fun. I cranked the gear up to the highest and pushed it pretty hard. My hiney was burnin'! It was getting pretty sparse near the end of the bike because most people had already either moved onto the run, or finished the race altogether. The bike portion took me 49 minutes.

T2: 2:00 Helmet off, skirt on over spandex, bike back on the rack, legs don't want to move

Run: I'm feeling pretty good although with the lead-legs and humidity, I felt like I was running through hot mud. I trudged along at a snails pace, and walked a the water stops. At about mile 1.75 I thought I had taken a wrong turn. There were almost no runners left on the course and I was on an unmarked section that runs through a bike path in the woods. I was convinced I was off-course, so I started walking back for probably a minute or so before I saw two ladies from my chubbies/oldies swim wave that reassured me I was on the right path. I turned around and ran (jogged slowly) to the finish. I was able to kick it and finish strong. Time for the run was 36ish.

Overall thoughts:
-Most definitely need to train more
-LOVE tris, can't wait to try another one
-need to get road bike, or convert my hybrid
-could have pushed much harder than I did. I didn't know what it would take physically to finish so I never went all out.
-Tri-people are awesome. They were all so friendly and encouraging.

Stay tuned for Rich's guest post about his experience. I promise you'll laugh.
Blogger is being difficult and not letting me add pics tonight, so they'll be in the next post as well.


MCM Mama said...

Wow, all these new triathletes! I'm so impressed with everyone!

Great job getting it done.

RunningLaur said...

Congrats on a great great race!! All of your enthusiasm makes me want to try a tri!

Aka Alice said...

Congrats! thanks for all the tri posts this past month or so. You have no idea how many questions you've answered for me.

PS Blogger has been a pain for me lately also!

lindsay said...

congrats!! very comical - 4 swims, 3 people on the bike, old ladies oogling their boyfriends! you did great and FINISHED. i'm glad you enjoyed it and are considering another. i can't believe you weren't freaking out in the water with only 4 practice swims! i'd be drowning :)

joyRuN said...


That pond would've freaked the living daylights out of me.

Anonymous said...

Glad you enjoyed it. Swimming in the murky water does take a little while to get use to, but you survived! Great job.

Anonymous said...

Great job! Glad you enjoyed your first Tri!

Marlene said...

Congratulations! Sounds like you did really well for your first tri, and awesome that you're thinking you'll do more!

Mel-2nd Chances said...

YAY! Good for you triathlete, you did it!! :D I got chills reading your report being only a few days from my first! Can't wait! Awesome that you're looking to do more too :)

Alisa said...

Your bike experience sounds like mine =).

Glad you loved it! I know I sure did, it was awesome I can't wait to do another one.

Chic Runner said...

Glad you had so much fun and it was a great race! :) Everyone who does triathlons is automatically hardcore in my book. :) That is too funny about the old ladies too. OOOOWEEEE he is sexy! ha ha

kilax said...

I love your race report! I feel like I was there with you!

First of all, great job for getting out there and doing it, and being so easy going about it! That is probably the best way to try a "new" sport (event, anyway).

Those older ladies sound so cool. I hope I am that hip when I am that age too. PLUS, that in-shape!

I have heard a road-bike, not hybrid, is the way to go. What's the difference though?

Melanie said...

It seems like everyone is trying out tris these days. I'm going to have to break down and try one myself I think. Way to go!

Carolina John said...

sounds like a great tri! you've got the bug now. i've fallen in lov with cycling thanks to triathlon. go get a road bike!

Brian said...

Awesome! Congratualtions on an awesome tri, super jealous and in total envy because I know I cant do a tri, but after reading all your Tri posts this summer I want to!

aron said...

congrats triathlete!! :)