Monday, August 8, 2011

My triathlon

So, for those of you who don't know this past Sunday I competed in the Nautica NYC Triathlon. It was a 1.5k swim, a 40k bike and 10k run; a true test of endurance, strength, my ability to handle inclement weather conditions. I found that I enjoyed the training for a tri much better than training for the marathon, so I thought the race would be that much more enjoyable! I was wrong. Here is my breakout of how the race went down, and mostly the reasons I hated it:
  1. You have to wake up before the crack of dawn. Transition closes at 5:15 so you have to be set up before that!

    Yellow Transition at 4:37am. Those are about 1500 VERY expensive bikes (except for mine).

  2. The race was delayed because of weather and an accident that needed to be cleaned up on our bike route. While I am very thankful they were being "safe" (more on quotes later), sitting around in a wet suit for 40 extra minutes kind of sucks.
  3. It was raining
  4. The rain causes wind
  5. The wind and rain cause terrible water conditions.
  6. I. Could. Not. Breathe. during the swim. I was disappointed in myself for botching this leg of my race, I had gotten so good at swimming during my training! Salt water of the Hudson was coming at me from all angles and I don't even want to think of how much dirty sewage water I swallowed that was still hanging around from that spill. I ended up having to swim backstroke for most of the swim just so I could breathe. I swam for what felt like 30 minutes and had only reached the 250m marker. How on Earth would I make it to 1500m?! Somehow, I did survive. But, I hated EVERY freaking second of the swim.
  7. Then, after feeling like I was going to die, I had to run BAREFOOT(!) for a 1/4 mile back to transition. I honestly do not know how people run marathons like that. In my short distance I somehow managed to step on at least 10 pebbles which was anything but pleasant feeling.
  8. I then got to hop on my bike just as the rain was picking up! Oh Happy Day! The course was a very hilly ride into the Bronx and going downhill the rain feels like little rocks being thrown at your face. On top of that, there were about 800 puddles that covered the entire road so my feet were soaked through approximately 3 minutes after I started. If I was lucky, and the path wasn't too crowded, I got to avoid the muddy spray of the person in front of me from the wet roads. Most of the time I was not so lucky.
    I have that "I'm squinting so the rain doesn't block my vision" look.

  9. Just as I hit the turnaround point, the wind decided to pick up and the whole ride back was super tough.
  10. The ride was a constant battle of "which hurt worse?" My crotch bones from the bike seat or my lower back from hunching over.
  11. Every time I would get to the point of "I want to give up" a para-athlete would come whizzing by me and make me feel terrible about even having the thought.
  12. About half way in to the bike ride that "I want to throw up feeling" started to brew from all that nasty sewage filled salt water I unintentionally swallowed/snorted.
  13. Right at the end I see my sister who came to cheer me on. A small glimmer of sunshine. She made me the most amazing sign!
  14. Finally I make it to the run! I know how to do this. Only one leg left. Nothing like a ridiculously steep hill out of transition to convince you that you can make it 6.2 miles.
  15. I see my sister again yelling for me! Then, I see Jason (he's really so cute!)! I am tempted to pull them both over and make them promise to never EVER let me do something this stupid again. (At this point in the race that thought went through my head approximately every other minute.)
  16. I know how hard that back hill of Central Park can be, but I am not prepared for the fact that my legs just cannot do it. I end up walking more than I wanted to (which was not at all) during the run portion.
  17. Without fail, as I take a quick breather and walk for a short bit, another para-athlete or blind triathlete whizzes by me. I quickly start running again.

    Just about to cross the finish line!

  18. By some miracle I am able to sprint (HA) across the finish line with a time of 3:17:04.
  19. I cross the line soaking wet and not sure if it's because of the Hudson River water, the rain, sweat, or the 90% humidity.
  20. The only enjoyable part of the race was when they handed me a Finisher towel soaked in ice water that I immediately placed on top of my head.
I do not know if it was the terrible weather that made me hate this race so much, but all I know is I'm a much better runner than triathlete! I made sure to get these pictures, because this was a once in a lifetime activity for me.

Obviously we coordinated our outfits to get this picture.

He's so good to me, and such an amazing support system.

Since crossing the finish line I have learned that a total of TWENTY SIX people were pulled from the water during the first leg of the race and two people died. The city is undergoing an investigation to determine if there should be stricter qualifications for participation and safety requirements relating to weather because of these tragedies. All I know is I don't feel quite as bad about thinking the swim leg was so damn difficult.

4 comments:

Aesthete No 1 said...

So sorry to hear it wasn't fun, but I'm so proud of you for pushing through and finishing! You're such a rock star!

KR said...

OMG. So proud of you!

(and so, SO glad you were not one of the two!)

Krystle said...

Ahh! I should have warned you to put toothpaste in your mouth! When I did my 10K swim they had us put toothpaste and it helped with the awful salt water in your mouth feeling. I'm so amazed by how well you did and that you even did it! I loved the play by play. :)

laura said...

you are soo awesome! and buff! :)