Swim - 26:49
T1 - 4:09
Bike - 1:13:49
T2 - 1:57
Run - 42:59 (12:39 pace)
I am a relatively new member of MMTC, and did my first TRI last year out of the area. I was nervous to do a race in Columbia as I am not supposed to be running hills (silly orthopedic doctors...). This causes a bit of a training problem. But, I won an entry into Celebrating Heroes. I decided that it would be a fun experience, even if I ended up having to walk the hills on the run course. I decided to sign up for the Athena division because I figured that the swim wave would be smaller. I was right and was glad that I had made the decision.
I was glad to have chosen the Athena division, as the swim wave was considerable smaller than the others. I also really enjoyed going out with a bunch of MMTC ladies. It made it more difficult to be anxious while waiting. I was hoping for closer to 25 minutes on the swim, but I had a lot of difficult sighting into the sun. I felt like it was impossible to see, and it made me nervous. I got kicked a few times while making the turn, but then was able to settle into a good pace. I came out of the water feeling good.
I had a PERFECT rack location. I was all the way at the end, near bike out. I also listened to a woman next to me that told me to fold my socks into my sneakers. It really helped. But, I had an issues with a safety pinned number when I went to put on my shirt. I think that probably cost me about a minute.
So, I didn't listen to any of you veteran MMTCers. I decided that I had to ride my new road bike. I took it for one 30 minute ride earlier in the week, and decided that I could make it work. I am SO GLAD I did! Okay people - I appreciate you not bragging as you all passed me on my little hybrid. But I realize now what a HUGE difference the road bike makes. I had so much fun passing people! Oh, and I would like to shout to Bob here (unless there is another 71 year old male MMTCer, I am pretty sure it was him). He and I came out of the bike shoot at about the same time and I was his heels for the first half of the race. He got away from me in the neighborhood after Mr. Albert, but I caught up and passed him at the hill before the school. (Don't worry - he got me back later...) I finished up the bike strong, and was really happy with how I was doing. I think that training on my hybrid built up my legs, and I was able to race much easier on the road bike.
Nothing too exciting. I just racked my bike at my awesome rack loacation, and then just started to run out. Oh, but I violated a basic priciple here. I did something different on race day. I had never used Gu, and decided that I needed some on race day. I shot one down real quick during this transition. It didn't bother my stomach, but it did give me a heartburn feeling. No bueno.
Run - 42:59 (12:39 pace)
I was not happy with this time, but I also was not too unhappy. I was hoping for more like an 11:30 pace, but I did not realize just HOW HILLY the course was. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention...I have never run in Centennial Park before. I had no idea what to expect. Whoops. My plan was to run as much as possible, and then walk up Gatorade Hill. I mostly suceeded in that goal, so I am happy with my performance. I was shuffling along at one point and a fellow runner cheered me along as I passed her, and told me to keep my head up on the run. I have a tendancy to go head down. I was so appreciative of her comment, I kept it in mind and I think it really helped me get up some of those hills. It was somewhere around Gatorade hill that Bob passed me on the run, and proceeded to disappear from my view. I saw a couple other MMTCers along the way, but don't know many people's names. I got a little demoralized on the back stretch by the baseball fields, but I got a little pep talk from another runner and kept on going.
I am not sure if I was high on adrenaline or what, but I was totally out of it for a good 20 minutes after finishing. I ended up being one of the last people out of the massage tent, and got back to the MMTC tent just in time to claim my stuff before they packed it into a van. I also made THE LAST shuttle back to the hotel to get my car. I also was THE LAST person to pick up my bike from transition. I nearly had a heart attack when I pulled up and all the racks were down and they were cleaning up transition. My bike was moved to the middle of the area and was laying with a pile of leftover stuff. I had about a 30 second freakout before I saw it there, as it is BRAND NEW (to me). I guess the lesson is - Don't become so disoriented after the race that you are the last person out of transition!