triathlons are for crazy people

that's right folks...i'm happy to say that the race is over. i finished my first {and last} international distance triathlon this weekend. and let me just tell you, it was no walk in the park. i wasn't that nervous about it until we went to the course friday night. a mile swim looks pretty intimidating when it's actually laid out. i had swam several mile swims over the course of my training and i knew it was nothing but seeing a mile mapped out on a lake with buoys is pretty scary looking. after we felt the water and stared at the swim section of the course for awhile, we headed UP the bike course {emphasis on the word UP in case you didn't notice}. i really have no way of measuring distance now, but that first hill was definitely more than a mile and it was at a 6% grade. can you say intense! i was freaking out about the bike already because of my decision to ride a mountain bike instead of a road bike. by the time we got to the sprint turnaround {sprint was half the distance of the international} we turned around to go get some dinner. i guess i just thought that if i didn't see the rest of the course that would mean it was easy. yeah. right. we spent the rest of the evening friday guiltlessly enjoying lots of carbs.

saturday morning we woke up at 5 a.m. {i hadn't been up before 8 in longer than a month} and headed for the course where we waited and let our nerves escalate. my dad and i set up our transition area where we would come to change shoes, grab our bikes, etc. etc...because we were in different gender and age classes we had transition spots that were separated from each other and we also started 10 minutes apart. my dad started first around 7:30 with the men and i started at 7:40 with the women. i've never been so intimidated. i walked down to the dock surrounded by women that were at least 6 inches taller than me and at least 30 lbs. lighter than me. all the ladies in my wave were wearing full body triathlon wetsuits...i was wearing a speedo tankini because i thought it would be easier to move around in. the swim went really well. i ended up passing my dad a couple hundred yards from the shore and came into the first transition feeling great. i clipped into my heavy mountain bike and downed a power gel {not my most favorite food on the planet}. things were going great until everyone that i'd creamed in the swim started speeding by me on their tiny road bikes. i was pedaling as quick as i could but there was no keeping up with the pack. i kept going back and forth between not caring and crying because i wanted it be done. i turned the corner to get back to the transition area and i saw people driving away...they'd already finished and i still had to run. before i got to the transition i saw chris in my parents suburban looking for me...awesome. apparently i took so long he started to get super worried. when i got off my bike i wanted to collapse. i was exhausted but i still had 6 miles of running in the hot sun. the run was two laps around a 3 mile course running past the finish line. i walk/jogged the first lap and then had to pass the finish line to start the second lap. talk about demoralizing. but my dad was hercules and ran/walked the second lap with me. when i crossed the finish line chris was there waiting for me. i ran straight to his arms and collapsed in a fit of tears.


Brandon said...

Well done Stace!! I got fatigued just reading about all of that.

bec said...

Good job Staci! That is so impressive