I can't believe this race is over already! I signed up for it so long ago it felt like it was never going to get here. After learning about how challenging the bike course is I wanted to switch from the Olympic distance to the sprint but I didn't hear back from the race organizers until two days before the event. Luckily I was allowed to switch.
Thursday through Saturday was filled with practically no sleep and lots of time on my feet. I wasn't even sure I was going to do this race until Saturday evening. I figured it wouldn't be pretty but would be good experience. I made it home from my boyfriend's house Saturday night around midnight and was asleep at one in the morning. Not ideal for the night before a race.
Luckily the race was only about 25 minutes from my house so I was able to sleep in until 6:00. I grabbed my bag full of my stuff for transition, ate a bagel and was on my way to the race. My dad and I got to the race site around 7:00 and headed straight to packet pickup and body marking. Then it was time to set up my transition area.
The swim started in waves so while I was waiting around for my wave I made use of the short bathroom lines and did some stretching. I ran into a good friend from my old swim team who I hadn't seen in almost a year. This was her first triathlon so I prepped her with some pointers, such as how aggressive the swim can
Swim: 13:52 (1/2 mile)
This time I decided to start towards the front of the pack for the swim, even though I hadn't been in a pool since the middle of July. I tried not to go too hard on the swim so I had enough energy for the massive hill at the beginning of the bike course. I kept telling myself to calm down and focus on staying steady and strong. Before I knew it the swim was over and I was heading into transition.
I am so glad I practiced this bike course before this race. It is really challenging, with some steep climbs and sharp turns. I knew how to handle every aspect of the course and felt so much more confident because of it.
My approach to the bike course was to go conservative on the first lap and then really hammer the second lap. Unfortunately during the first lap my chain popped off and got stuck so I was unable to fix it. I walked my bike for about 10 minutes before my dad luckily found it and fixed it for me. After that it was smooth sailing though. I was able to keep up with people with road and tri bikes and even passed people on those killer hills. I felt unstoppable.
Bike: 1:22:31 (18.2 miles- 13.2 mph)
I was worried about how my legs would feel during the run since I really pushed myself on the bike but at soon as I started running I felt like I was flying. I didn't want to go out too fast but it was only a 3 mile run so I knew I could push the pace some. The run was all on trails so I was glad I was wearing my trail shoes. I loved the run and was hardly passed at all. And in my Olympic style sprint to the finish I passed some lady with just a few yards to go.
Run: 26:13 (3.2 miles- 8:11 pace)
Overall this was an incredible race. Besides my chain popping off I did really well on the bike and ran faster than I ever could have imagined on the run. During this race I truly felt like a triathlete and now I am even more excited about next year's racing season.
Finish time: 2:05:00