Pre-race: Apparently people didn't plan to get to Celebration quite as early as they do the Columbia tri. Getting there at 5am was definitely plenty early (disclaimer: this doesn't mean you don't have to get there super early for Iron Girl). Saw lots of friendly faces (too many awesome MMTC volunteers to name), and got set up down the rack from Jen J. One of my husband's firefighter colleagues was racing his first tri, so we did some heavy MMTC recruiting. The tent was incredible, as always, a great place to relax before the race.
Swim: 27:23 (65/121 Still slow but improvement from Columbia) I didn't swim enough between Columbia and Celebration. Not because it wasn't on my schedule, but because of lots of travel. It showed here. I pushed hard, didn't panic, but just wasn't as fast as I would like to be. The good news? I was in the middle of my age group instead of the bottom 10. I felt the difference during the swim. Staying with the pack for longer, passing more of the wave in front of me, and not getting passed by so many of the men behind me. I made the last turn and was ready to turn it up. Suddenly the seaweed struck. (Ok, pondweed, but that doesn’t flow quite as well). I was literally getting tangled in it. Normally I would swim until my hands touched the ground at least three strokes, but I was just waiting for the second my feet could touch the ground. I was so happy to see dry land.
T1 2:30 (11/119) Pretty happy with this. I have gone sockless all season (thanks to TriSlide on my feet before the swim). The run up and down the hill actually seemed harder than Columbia (I slid on my way into T2). I saw my timing chip was coming loose so I reached down to fix it before mounting the bike.
Bike 1:00:37 (10 or 11/119- same exact time for 10th and 11th but I am listed as 11th) I worked hard on the bike and met my goal almost on the nose. I ended the swim in 65th for my division, and ended the bike in 27th. I’m pretty happy with that result, for sure. Getting a bike fit in the next few weeks should help even more.
T2 1:57 (36/119) I turned one rack too early. One benefit of being short (at least in height, because if you have read this far you know I am never short-winded), is that I could run my bike under the rack to my correct rack.
Run: 32:20 (26/119, 9:31 pace) Nothing to be said but I need more brick work with hilly bikes/runs. I had no gas left in the tank after pushing hard on the bike. Jen definitely pushed me a bit, and it was great to see MMTC at Gatorade Hill. No matter how worn I am, I always seem to save just enough to push the finish. I got some cheers at the end for pushing it hard (if only I could keep that up for the whole race!!!).
Post-Race: Awesome food, and great seeing lots of MMTCers get awards! Thanks to all the incredible volunteers. I am looking at this race as the “before” and Iron Girl the “after”. Same course, with two more months to train hard.