Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Friday, Dustin and I went for a 3 mile run just to loosen up our muscles, and we continued to pack all the essentials, which takes a really long time. My heart rate monitor got back from repair at the LAST minute on Saturday morning, before we packed up the car, so that relieved a lot of my stress.

Saturday, we packed my Murano to the max with all of our equipment, food, drinks, Jeff, Kendra, Dustin, myself, and oh yeah, don't forget to throw the bikes on the rack too! We drove a little over two hours and went straight to registration/expo and met Tim and his son, Carter there, and found Kendra's sister Paula and her friends Mandy, Brandon, and Chris (Mandy and Chris raced also). We got our bike helmet, bike frame, and shirt numbers, chips, got weighed, got our swim caps and our baggy of goodies, and then off to drop off our bikes for the night on the transition racks. I had a bad spot because it wasn't around anything noticable, so when you run into the transition area and there are 3000 bikes parked on the racks, it's hard to find. I had to count three back from the big tree and then towards the far end! We all walked down to the water and the temperature felt great, but it sure was windy! Time to go drive the 56 mile bike course.......a lot "hillier" than I thought, for Florida anyway with one big hill towards the middle of the course. Glad we did it, but it made me a little more nervous.

Then, Paula and her friends had a cabin at Fort Wilderness, so we went there and fixed spaghetti and garlic bread (Dustin did most of it) for the group. The cheerers had wine and beer, while we drank water, gatorade and milk. It was good and convenient, that's for sure. Then, off to check into our room at Shades of Green ( a military hotel about 2 miles away!). We prepared our race numbers on our shirts and layed everything out for the morning that we would need. Megan had to sleep on the pull out which she was too tall for (sorry Megan!).


Both Dustin and I coudln't get to sleep and didn't sleep well, so when the alarm went off at 4:15 AM, we didn't feel too rested, but we had to get up and get to the transition area before 6 AM when it closed. We repacked everything up, including Jeff, Kendra, and Megan and went to the parking lot to meet the bus that shuttles us over. It was completely dark with some random lights not shining in the right places in the transition area-making it hard to see what you were doing. Last minute bike check, aired up the tires, layed the towel out with the bike shoes, running shoes, hats, GU, snacks, heart rate chest strap, number strap, sunglasses, helmet, etc. Had to visually run through exactly what I would do on the transition from swim to bike and then later from bike to run. By the time Dustin and I got out of transition, it was after 6 AM, and we were some of the last people out. We went down by the water where we were body marked with our numbers, and then decided we needed a last minute bathroom break. The boys line was longer (finally!) so I told Dustin I would meet him down at the water. I applied my 60 SPF sunscreen, ate a last minute Gu, and drank some water. We met the supporters there too. I had to leave them earlier than Dustin did because my wave started at 6:55 AM and Dustin's didn't start until 7:15 (20 minute difference which was good because that would motivate him to try to catch me and me to try to run from him!). I put my neon green swim cap (Dustin's was PINK!), and got encouraging hugs from the supporters and a kiss from Dustin......


I get over to the beach about 1 minute before my start, perfect timing so I didn't get too nervous; saw Mandy and stood with her as we waited for the horn to blow. I shook my arms a bit, waved to the supporters, put the goggles on and all of a sudden we were starting! I entered the water slowly as planned and got my rhythm down quickly. The water temperature was perfect and the sun was coming up on my right side and cast a pinkish hue on the water. It was actually relaxing that I forgot to start my watch!!! So, I started it late (which I thought was about five minutes, but turned out to be two minutes late, so the WHOLE race, I didn't know what my real time was!) I've never been kicked and hit so much in a triathlon before; nothing that hurt, but constantly, I was right beside other swimmers, or other waves were overtaking us and coming up right on top of us. Instead of getting pissed off, I remembered Kendra talking about last year how she could feel the energy of the other waves, so I tried to keep that energy up in my stroke too! Rounding those buoys seems like an endless process, and I kept having to swim back to the left after sighting the buoys (I need to even out my stroke!) As I crept closer to shore, one other girl and myself fed off of eachother swimming inches away from eachother at the same exact speed and then I pulled away! I felt like I had a lot left and this was the only event I really had to work my arms, so I pushed it a little harder. I swam until my hand touched the bottom and then hopped up and ran out the water yelling "whooo hoooooo" at Tim, Dana, Kendra, Megan, and Jeff, giving high fives and smiling. One event down, two to go! 46 minutes and 22 seconds and Dustin swam it in 46 minutes and 41 seconds (we both felt really good, but he had a few problems with his goggles).

I ran up the shoot and into transition to the screams of supporters taking pictures and videoing me take WAY too long to get on the bike. I just had to make sure I had everything and then right before the "mount" line, we had to drag our bikes through sand. I started to mount my bike before the yellow line and then had to get back off and then back on again past the yellow line! Silly me! Then, I was off for the 56 mile ride with the wind at my back for the first part, then into the "hills." I was going about 19 mph for the first part, then slowed down to 8 mph on the biggest hill. My bike computer screwed up, so I didn't know for sure what my average speed was. I was going to be really happy if I averaged 17.5 for the whole thing, and I actually averaged 18.0 for 3 hours and 7 minutes. Dustin never caught me on the bike, but did average 18.7 mph for 2 hours and 59 minutes and 56 seconds (barely beat his goal of under 3 hours). So, he was slowly making up ground on me from our 20 minute difference on our starts.

The nutrition part of the triathlon is the fourth part, which is primarily in the bike since it's the longest sport. We used perpetuem, sustained energy, endurolytes, gu, gatorade, water and uncrustables (little round PB and J sandwiches). What I did was set up a separate watch on my bike to beep every ten minutes. The first ten minutes I drank four pretty good gulps of my mixture of perpetuem (2.5 scoops) and sustained energy(1.5 scoops). Next ten was gatorade, next ten was water with three endurolyte pills, then repeated that process, with the next water going along with the uncrustable on the first hour, Gu on the second and third hours. This ended up working for me, but everyone is different. I think Dustin tried to injest too much and wasn't drinking enough water to digest, because when he got on the run, he had horrible stomach cramps which slowed him down immensely.

As, I made the transition from bike to run, there was a very important thing I did, I put on this silly foam shark hat so that our supporters could see us coming. You have no idea how many people yelled for me because of that hat, other people in the race who complimented me. It really did keep me going throughout the whole 13.1 miles. Dustin also wore one (due to my begging), which worked out well, because we would tell random people along the sides "hey, my husband is wearing a hat just like this, tell him I love him" and then the same people would tell me that he said he loved me back! See, the course was a three loop run course, so we would see the same spectators many times and it was a lot of fun. We also ran a lot in grassy fields, which I loved because it took me back to high school cross country. Tim ran with us for awhile and Jeff also ran with us, so that helped to keep our spirits up. There were aid stations every mile where we could get soaked wet sponges, gatorade, water, coke, pretzels, bananas, oranges, sports gels, etc. I was mainly getting just water and gatorade at first and then it started getting hotter. I was starting out at 8:30 miles, but slowed down. Towards the end, I was getting chills, so I was grabbing the salty pretzels, and gatorade, and tried to keep myself running in the last two miles. I never walked except while going through aid stations so I could drink and eat without making a mess! It was hard, don't get me wrong, but I had a lot of fun. It sucked to know that Dustin wasn't having a good run though, but I knew he was okay through Jeff and Tim telling me, so that was comforting! As I came closer to the finish line, I saw Susan Wallis, who is the president of our tri club and has done tons of full ironmans, and it was just awesome to see her. Then, I saw Jeff and Kendra, and Megan, and Dana snapping pictures and videoing! I finished the run in 2:01:34 which I really wanted under two hours, but hey, my total time was 6:03:05 so I was more than happy with that. I felt like I pushed my body to it's limits and didn't leave anything out on the course, so it was a wonderful feeling getting that medal around my neck. I met a lot of my small goals too, so that was good. Then, we waited for Dustin to come across the finish line. He came through with his cute shark hat on too and I met him at the finish line. He was pretty tired and wanted to sit down, but I didn't let him until he walked a bit first. He ended up getting his Blood pressure checked in the medical tent, but I think all he really needed was some electrolytes in his system and then he felt better. Jeff was all about checking the boards to see the postings of the times and came back to us (while we were stuffing our faces with free pizza) to give us the report. We both finished in 6:03 something, but one of us beat the other one by 22 seconds! 6 hours of working out and we finished that close to each other.............I actually beat Dustin, which wasn't expected at all. Most of you know how competitive I am so I took pride in that. Especially since Dustin beats me at every single thing we do, so it was payback time in a big way :) He took it very well, and I only rub it in every once in awhile! We had an awesome time and couldn't have done it without our supporters, thanks guys!


Blogger 1HappyAthlete said...

Great race and great race report!!! You both did so amazing :) I'm definitely rooting for you for IM WI

6:45 PM  

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