I have spent so many days and nights thinking about the day I could say with pride, that I crossed the finish line strong! I have now reached this goal and I could not be happier. This day has been on my mind for some time. As some of you may know, my first triathlon was in 1992 when I was 15 years old. I enjoyed this sport as well as running and continued doing races until 1995 when I left for college. It was at this time I started to gain my weight and I lost sight of who I was and what my dreams were. I only became heavier as the years went by and I slowly moved further away from any chance of doing another triathlon again. I used to tell my husband so many times that I wanted to race one more time someday when I lost my weight, and now, I have! I may be slower, bigger and older than before but for me it felt as exciting and meaningful as the first time. Crossing that line was more than just a means of finishing the race, it symbolized for me the completion of a long journey of weight loss, injuries, and ups and downs, and the feeling of wanting to quit so many times. All of my hard work was well worth it when I raised my hands in victory with the biggest smile on my face knowing that once again, I was a Triathlete. I was no longer the fat girl, I was no longer the girl who was wearing pregnancy clothes and not even pregnant. Instead, I was the girl who worked hard, changed my life and reached a dream that was once started 17 years ago.
The race was hard. I was well prepared and going into it I knew the bike was going to be a challenging one. There were hills, many hills and not the fun ones! Instead they where long, constant inclines that gave my thighs a BURN I am sure to remember! If I look ahead at all of my races this year, this course is by far the most challenging so I have relief in knowing the worst is over! I did not reach my goals in terms of time for this race. I was slower on each event than I had wanted and my swim and bike where by far my slowest times, since I started training. I am ok with this as it gives me a baseline to work from for the year.
Swim - This was terrible for me. The pool was very crowded and I did not like having to slow down with people in front of me. I ended up doing the breast stroke for awhile until I could pass and continue with my freestyle. So it was not an ideal way to start off but again I was just so happy to be there!
300 yards - 6:27 mins
Transition 1 - 2:50 mins ( way too long...)
Bike - I have a love/ hate relationship with this course. On one hand I am so happy that it was challenging because it made me feel so accomplished when I was done, however when I was on the road I was dreaming of a nice flat course and how great that would feel! The hills where brutal for me and I trained with hills to get ready for this course but it was not enough. This really drained me and left me zapped for my run.
15.2 miles - 52.15 mins/ Avg 17.5 mph
Transition 2 - 0:36 seconds
Run - This is where I really struggled. My pace was far slower than where I had trained. The course much like the bike was a challenge and it proved to me that all 5k's are not equal! It also showed me that I need to work on running with hills so that I can be more prepared next time. The first 1.5 miles or so where all up hill and I could see well trained, seasoned triathletes walking up ahead but I told myself that I could slow my pace down but I could not walk under NO circumstances! I pressed through it, my thighs still on fire from the bike where really burning now, but I can say that during the entire 5k that I reached my goal and did not walk, and held my pace until the end when I sprinted through the finish line (passing a girl in front of me, yeah!) Again, it was one of my worst runs in terms of time but if I look my determination and spirit during this run, it was one of my greatest moments!
3.1 miles - 32:05 mins / Avg pace - 10:21 mm
Total time - 1:34 mins
Age group - 9/17
Overall placing - 158/249
Female placing - 42/86
Now I have to look ahead to my next race, which is in 6 days!! I have a triathlon on Sunday!!!
600 yard lake swim
12 mile bike
3 mile run
I am using this as a training run for a triathlon I have on June 28th. My goals are once again to finish strong, focus on the lake swim and getting used to the feeling of another type of swim and having that experience under my belt for some races later this season. I will have some photos posted soon as well as my race report and photos from Sundays race! Here I go again!!!
Thanks for all your support and encouragement!