This weekend, I became a triathlete.
I was a bit nervous, having not trained on any of the course, but for as nervous as I was, I was also pretty excited.
Me at the finish…but I’m getting ahead of myself here.
I know I was a bit slow, and the last one of my age group to finish, but ultimately, I felt strong swimming. I could have definitely been stronger but considering I hadn’t swam in almost a month, and had never swam a half mile consecutively without stopping, I felt really good. The water was much warmer than I expected and I just stayed to the back and to the outside out of everyone else’s way.
Coming out of the swim.
Transition 1: 4:51
I do think I could have done better at the transition. But ultimately I think I was slightly unorganized and that slowed me down a minute or two. That and I was really effing tired.
Nine or so miles in less than an hour on a mountain bike with two MAJOR hills that I was relegated to walking my bike up? I’ll take it. I was thankful that there was next to zero traffic (since the roads were still open). Traffic kind of freaks me out. BUT! BUT! And this is a huge thing for me…on the downhills I totally didn’t ride my brakes. Wahoo! Go me! (and got my speed up to almost 23 mph!)
Listen, I know I need a better bike but thankfully the Huffster had the amazingness of being freesies and we totally increased her value by about $50 when we put new wheels on her. Will I stick with her into next triathlon season? Probably not but she’s good enough for right now and that’s what matters. Maybe for Christmas Santa will bring a fancy new/used road bike (that’s under $1,000).
Transition 2: 1:24
Still too long. But my bike was at the back of the TA so that’s that.
Now, even though I did a fair share of BRICK workouts for an 8 or so week training plan, nothing prepared me for those god awful hills. Seriously, those hills were HORRENDOUS. I ran as much as I could but walked most of the first mile and a half because it was just too much.
At the turn around point, I did kick it into gear because I had seen some runners coming down when I was going up that I knew I could catch. And I did. I passed two people in the last mile which was all downhill and some cross country. Had it been a flatter course I could have been faster in the run but alas, I hate hills and they hate me. I suppose I should schedule more Naval Academy Bridge Workouts before the Army 10 miler no?
Running strong to the finish.
Hey man, I didn’t finish last! HUZZAH! I will say that the event was super well organized, it was the perfect size for my first triathlon, and I felt really strong out there. I wasn’t racing for time (though I did think it would take me closer to 2.5 hours so finishing sub 2 hours was a super welcomed surprise). The Hopkins Vineyard Tri folks were AMAZING and super helpful. The volunteers along the course were fantastic and super friendly. Is it a race I’d do again? Ehhhhh the hills were a bit much for me.
Adam and I enjoying wine. They had an excellent post race spread including wine tastings! The wine was delicious and the views were amazing!
Next one? Keystone State Super Sprint on 8/25! It’s a shorter version of sprint tri just south of Harrisburg in PA – .25 mile swim/9 mi bike and 2 mi run. I can OWN that one!
Feel good moment of the day: The awesome shirt was voted by the women at the water stop as the best shirt of the race. I give kudos to Ali for that one!