I swim. I bike. I run...usually covered in boogers and crayon.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

My New (Expensive) Hobby

As a runner, I appreciate the simplicity of tying your shoes and going. Triathlons, to me, have always been events where people show off their high tech gear whether or not they possess any athletic ability whatsoever. So what is a runner to do when running is taking its toll but you still want to compete? You jump in any pool you can get in, ride any bike you can find, and sign up for your first triathlon (judgments aside.)
A month ago, I was debating signing up for another half marathon or doing something completely different. I looked at a few tris in the area that took pace this month and chose the Bristow Area Tri and Swim "Salute to the Military Triathlon" which took place in Warrenton, VA this morning. It was a 300 meter swim, 12 mile bike ride, and a 5k run. I had a few friends sign up as well so I wouldn't be completely lost and bewildered.
We got there at 6am this morning. I took my bike and gear to the transition area and set everything up. I was going to wear my bathing suit for the swim and throw on some bike shorts for the other two events. I put some Lock Laces in my new running shoes last night so I wouldn't have to deal with tying them (as it was, it took me 2:39 to transition from swimming to biking which I am sure is a lot of time.)
There were 175 registered for the sprint triathlon and I was number 155 to get into the pool. I don't know WHAT time I said I could swim it in when I registered but I basically passed ten people in front of me so I could have easily been closer to the front. It took me 8 minutes to swim. I jumped out of the pool and ran to the transition area, put on my shorts, socks, shoes, helmet, and walked my bike to the mounting line and left for the 12 mile ride. The roads were rural with rolling hills but there was a lot of "out and back" requiring us to make sharp u-turns in the middle of the road which I'm sure added time.
I made it back to the transition area and walked my bike to the rack remembering not to take off my helmet until I was dismounted (yay...no DQ for me! I was very nervous about all of the rules and made sure I followed all of them.) It only took me 55 seconds to transition into running. I didn't wait for my friends who were behind me. I just wanted to get it over with! I felt like I was crawling during the 5k but I still managed to pull it in at 27:01.
I finished 3rd out of 8 in my age group and won an award (or would have had we stuck around to receive it.) My time was 1:29:19. I was 101/152 overall (guess not all 175 made it to the race) and was 70/152 for the run (not bad since I'm a runner and not a biker or swimmer.)
Now I want to do another one. I figured I would learn some lessons today but I didn't mess up too badly. I guess the best lesson I learned is that you don't need fancy equipment to compete in a triathlon!
(Photos compliments of my husband who cheered me on and kept the baby in tow!)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Swim/Bike/Run (Without the Swim)

Sunday, I took a 20 mile bike ride. It was the first time I've been on a bike since we went camping Memorial day weekend 2009. It wasn't bad! I went on a hilly portion of the Mt. Vernon trail that goes along the Potomac river all the way to Mt.Vernon. It was a nice day so the trail was packed with families, bikers (some fast and some painfully slow), walkers, runners, dogs. I nearly clipped someone off of their bike while passing them. Oops! How do you go fast with so many people around?
After I got home from the bike ride, I went out for a run. I didn't know how far I would make it as my legs felt like jell-o and running after biking makes you feel sooooooo slow. I managed to go four miles.
I need to go for a swim sometime soon. I took a masters class last summer and I felt pretty confident at the end but it's been 8 months since then. The triathlon is next weekend and my friends and I are excited for it. I just want to finish it and see if it's something I want to keep doing. But maybe I'll hate it and we'll be able to save a bunch of money :)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

New Shoes and...Triathlon?

Helloooo!! The weather has been awesome and the family and I have been doing some running. Yesterday, we ran to the local running store and I got new shoes which I have desperately needed! I got Brooks Ravenna 2 (pictured above) which I would not have bought or worn to train for a marathon in since they don't have much medial posting but they are cushy and lightweight and perfect for the shorter runs I've been doing (fewer than 10 miles). I have been wearing my old Ravennas that I got for free and after trying some other shoes on (including my beloved Nike Structure Triax), I decided to get the updated version of them. The new Nike's just seemed like too much shoe--heavy and bulky. I also tried on the Nike Lunarglide 2 for s&gs and they were so flat and hit my feet in the wrong places. I am definitely not a minimalist runner. I like to feel my shoes and their support.
In other news, I registered for my first (sprint) triathlon! It's May 29th (Memorial day weekend) and about 40 minutes from where we live. It's a 300m swim, 12 mile bike, and 5k run. The swim is in an outdoor pool so it's perfect for a newbie like me. I am nervous about the transitioning. I am already figuring out what to wear. My husband has a wetsuit that I can wear and a bike I can ride (I don't even have my own bike. Shame.) But I'm so excited!!! I need to get in the pool and fit some bike rides in in the next four weeks. Woo hoo!!!! There is a triathlon in Annapolis on the 14th but it's $140 to register and I was hoping that would be my first one but the one I entered is $65 and seems better for someone who is new to the sport since the swim is in a pool (and not off of city dock.) The bike is what I am most worried about. I took a Masters swim class three days a week last summer so it's the bike I am probably most rusty at. So that's the news!! I had a month off after the marathon and now I have the itch to train for something new. Wish me luuuuuuck!