So, I was pretty nervous before this triathlon, not as nervous as last year but still pretty nervous. Why? Because I knew I could place. That always puts the pressure on a bit!
You have to seed yourself to how fast you think you'll swim. Each swimmer leaves 4 seconds apart. I decided to go first this year, unlike last year where I seeded myself 4th, but ended up passing everyone anyways (I was too nervous to go first). This girl (who I later found out was in my age group) caught up with me on the swim during the first part, but I was able to swim ahead of her the rest of the way. When I got out of the water, however, to run up all the stairs into transition, she was right behind me! Ahhh!
My swim didn't feel as strong as it did last year. Last year I swam a 6:35, this year it was 7:40 (I missed a week of training because we were backpacking 2 weeks ago-I did not feel strong at all in any workout this past week). The girl who was right behind me also swam 7:40. We tied on that! However....I did not let her pass me up in anything else, hehe!
T1: I was pretty happy, 0:57. However, I struggled putting the straps on my bike shoes down.
It took me some time to get clipped in, and was worried about the straps on my shoes. Then I thought, "The hell with it," and just rode on with my velcro straps loose. My feet weren't going anywhere, they were already in the shoes. Riding down Centennial was fine, except the part where I almost took out one of the policemen working the race. I thought I was supposed to turn, then realized he said straight, and almost ran right into him! I slowed way down for that. I continued on smoothly, riding around 21mph, until I turned onto Sylvania Ave., and then came the wind. I watched my speedometer decrease in speed...to 19, 18..nooo! I tried to keep it up around 20, but it was a challenge. Then I turned onto another road, not sure which one, and there was a nice tailwind. 23mph the whole way. Another turn, 21-22 mph, and into T2!
Two older women passed me (a 60 and 40 yr old!!), and then one other woman caught up to me at T2 (which I knew she would because she's amazingly fast on the bike and run!).
T2: I struggled with this one. Because I don't wear socks during triathlons to save my transition times (which would be a lot slower than they already are!), it was hard to get my wet foot out of my cycling shoe. Oh well, next time I'll put baby powder in them beforehand. 1:08-still not bad for me, it's a lot better than the last 2 years. Oh and I don't know why, but I put on my race belt first before my running shoes. Usually I grab it and buckle it on as I run. Oh well.
The Run: I wore my Garmin so I could pace myself. I tried to keep my pace under 8:00 the whole time. I felt like I was going to throw up during the whole run, so I just told myself, "It's ok, you can puke when you finish, just keep running as fast as you can." I was amazed with my run time. 24:27. That's about 15 seconds slower than my 5k time without the swim an bike attached. I owe that all to Sandi Nypaver, and her running form video. After my 50k when I got ITband syndrome, I knew I had to be done with heel striking and do something about my form. As soon as she said to lean forward with your ankles, not your hips, something clicked in my brain! Definitely don't have perfect form, but it's a lot better than it ever has been. Also, I think psychologically I know the run just sucks after the bike, so why not just think positively, and do the best I can? Change your attitude towards things helps, too.
Overall Time: 1:06:30. 4th out of 167. 2nd on the swim portion (well, we tied), 6th on the bike, and 11th on the run overall. Very happy!!
Ok, I must work very hard this week during swimming so I can be ready for my 10k swim August 11th. Seems I have lost some strength due to the backpacking week, but that's ok, I think I can bring it back.
Great job to all my friends who raced today!