General Smallwood State Park
Indianhead, MD 6/29/2008
750 Meter Swim
16 Mile Bike
Place 115 out of 117 women
On Saturday I drove to the park with Casey and JR to check out the course, packet pick up, etc. I’m so glad we did. The bike and run were hillier than we were expecting, so I was glad to know that up front. In the future, I want to make a point to drive the whole bike course.
I did not get very good sleep Saturday night. I slept on Casey’s couch with Miss Annabelle Blanche. She was up all night long. She would jump off the couch to grab her tennis ball every time she heard the slightest sound! However, I was not too worried about the sleep stuff. I had a good nights sleep on Friday and it was worth the trade off of knowing I would not be late to the race.
Sunday morning I was up at 5:00 and we were out the door by 5:30. We stopped at the Bucks, and I got my standard misto and bagel order. I love coffee, so I was very motivated to leave right on time. I have to remember how nice it is to not feel rushed. It really makes a difference at the race site.
I ran into some of my TNT buddies while setting up transition. I was sharing rack space with Teen and Sara G. was across from us. It was great to see Jay and the Eastwicks as well. While talking to Sara and Jay, an official pointed out I was missing one of my handle bar plugs. He was ridiculously intense. I was told to have the bike guys check it out immediately because if they couldn’t fix it I couldn’t race. WTF? Don’t plugs fall out all the time? Apparently my plug would need to be smaller than road bike plugs, or something like that. We had hung out with the Revolution Cycle guys the day before, so they recognized me immediately and solved the problem in less than a minute! Thanks guys, that was really stressing my shiz out.
I was in the same wave with my TNT peeps, so we were able to just hang out together before the start of the race. There was a slight delay of 8 minutes, but that didn’t bother me. Finally, it was our time to walk out to the dock. It was an in the water start. I’ve never done one of those, but I liked it. I felt like I had a few minutes to get adjusted to the water and warm up a smidge by treading water.
I felt great on the swim. My current goal is just to stay with the pack and not be DFL (dead fucking (sorry mom!) last). I was with the pack at the first buoy, but they got away from me after that. No worries though. I swam strong for me. I didn’t have to use my backstroke once! I just kept on plodding ahead with my even pace. I had read race reports from last year about the seaweed on the course so I was prepared for that, although, it’s weird to be swimming along and then find yourself grabbing at the stuff.
I wanted to do the swim in 23 minutes. I actually did it in 22 minutes. Yay me!
The transition from the water is up a slight hill. I ran some of it. I really don’t like being on concrete barefoot. So I kind of hobbled/skipped to my bike area when I hit the pavement. Total transition for T1 was 5:43. I was aiming for 5:00. I’m pretty happy with this considering the long uphill run to T1. It’s also better than my T1 at St. A’s by about 1 minute.
The bike course was hilly, but I was expecting it by the time I was actually on the bike! I bought a bento box on Friday, and that has been my favorite tri gear purchase so far. It’s very helpful to have your food right there in front of you by your handlebars and not on my back! Also, I didn’t get a flat tire, so that’s progress over the St. A’s race.
I wanted to do the bike in 1:12 but it actually took 1:14.
My T2 transition was 3:22, faster than the 5 minute mark I was trying to beat. However, I was 116 out of 117 in my transition time. There must be a way to do this transition faster. The number one person did it in 39 seconds, although she may have worn her running shoes on her bike. Either way, I need to cut that time down!
The run was pretty miserable. I was planning to do a 4:1 pace. I managed to do my first 4 minutes of running, but the mind won after that. There was a big hill to “hike” up to get out of the park. I started playing mind games with myself that I would walk the uphills but run the downhills. I actually kept this promise for the first 1.5 miles! By the time I was on my last mile, I was pretty spent. I could feel a blister starting to form on my right heel. I don’t like running so I didn’t run much the month before the race. I think the race might be more fun if I work on my running so that I’m not dreading the run during the swim and bike. I also think I should drop my run to a 2:1 or 3:1 on the race day but train at a 4:1. Oh yeah, and figure out what the heck is going on with the blister. Time for new socks, perhaps?
The finish was at the top of a hill, just like at Marine Corp…those crazy diabolical race directors. What’s up with the finish line being there? Miserable I tell you! I wanted to do the 5k in 48 minutes and I actually did it in 47:19, so I can’t complain too much about the time.
I finished the total race in 2:32:31 which was about what I predicted (2:33:00).
Big congratulations to Casey and Jamie who got 2nd and 3rd in their division in the international distance!
What’s next? I think the Luray race, pending confirmation of Kat’s availability. I’d like to do the sprint in 2:30.