What's the difference between a a training tri and a non-training tri, you ask? When you find out let me know, because, except for a smaller size, lack of any swag, and no bike racks, it turns out you still gotta swim, bike, and run. I guess because it had the word "training" before it, I expected, oh, I dunno, maybe some help!
D.C. Tri held a training tri last Sunday, the day after our epic 45.8 mile bike ride. I was so stoked from Saturday's festivities, I could not fall asleep 'til the wee hours. I think I got a solid four hours. Plus? When I woke up I was practically hemorrhaging (TMI? Sorry!)
So my mood was not the best when I arrived at Haine's Point at 6 a.m. The course: a 400 meter pool swim (CAKE!!! I can do this standing on my head!), a 16.8 mile three-loop bike ride (not so much cake!!), and a 5k (oh running, why do you hate me??) around the peninsula.
Transition was on a grassy median strip, and was very laid back. Bitching commenced at 6:05 sharp. My worry at that moment was having to run from the pool--in bare feet!--through the parking lot and across the street. The girl next to me pretty much told me to HTFU, and then she put a towel across her head, laid down and fell asleep until start time. A strategy I need to adopt!
For the swim, we had all estimated our times beforehand. I guessed 11 minutes. We got body marked in order of swim time, and got in line. You got in the pool in 20 second increments and swam 50 meters up one lane, down the OTHER SIDE of the same lane, ducked under the rope and did the same for the next 3 lanes until you reached the end, hauled ass out of the pool, and ran to transition.
So off I went on my first 50 meters, la-de-da, not so hard, is this?? When two chicks lapped me. No problem-o, go for it! About halfway down my 2nd 50 meters--BAM--head-on collision. I was sure I had hit the wall (literally), but no. No, no, no. It was another swimmer, starting his first lap--on the WRONG side of the lane. (I dunno, maybe he was English.) Sigh. It shook me up but no damage was done. And it gave me something else to be annoyed about for the next, oh, hour or so. Score.
At the swim start there were tons of people, volunteers, it was a busy place! At my swim exit, it was quiet. TOO QUIET. Like a morgue QUIET. I thought I was surely the last one out, that the volunteers had given up on me. But no. There was one stalwart who said, "you're O.K., go!" (Hmm, that's the name of a band!) Let's take a short musical interlude here:
Swim time: (Guesstimate) 11 minutes.
Bike: There was a strong headwind on the point but once you rounded it, it was, curiously, a tailwind! By the time I started, I could see bikes in the far distance. I was pretty much one loop behind everyone else. Soon, there were people running. I decided to say something encouraging to every runner I passed, which made me feel like a NICE person. As I started my third and last loop, I was starting to feel DISCOURAGED as I watched all my friends drop their bikes to head out on the run. One of them (Hi Jason!) called out to me "Push it, push it, push it!" so I hunkered down and pushed it, thanks to Jason.
Funny how it's the little things that can make a difference.
Bike: 16.8 miles 1:05:19 15.43 miles / hour
And then there was the little 5K. I noticed that the wind had died down. I noticed that there weren't that many runners I could see. OK, there were NO RUNNERS that I could see. There was however, one chick in front of me who was walking. I started my death-march shuffle and hoped she would not start running just so I could feel some kinda good by passing someone. Eventually she started running, and eventually I passed her. Score.
I have no idea why I start walking. I'm not winded, it's not like I'm running fast, and nothing hurts! It's the MOST ANNOYING THING. I had hoped to better my run time from my Philly tri, but I just stopped caring. Whatcha gonna do? A sweet girl started walking with me, and then she said, "You wanna finish this thing?" to which I replied, "Go ahead, I'm not ready to run," (HENCE THE NAME OF THIS BLOG). I tried to pick it up for the finish.
Run: 36:43 (11:50 min/miles)
I did not feel elated at the end. I felt "I'm hungry/I want to barf." I didn't feel so hot, which was a damn shame because there was another FANTASTIC D.C. Tri barbecue in full swing, with loads of goodies. I forced myself to eat a veggie burger (at 10 a.m.), and hung around waiting to see if barfing would commence (it did not) before finally deciding to head home.
1. A training tri is actually terrific training, and D.C. Tri puts on a great one.
2. They can't all be peak experiences, now can they?
3. If I was fast, then I wouldn't get to experience getting better.
4. I don't know why I felt so crappy. Lack of sleep? Long ride the day before? The whole bleeding to death thing?
I'm glad to have two tris under my belt before next Sunday, where my ONLY goal (I swear to God) is to HAVE FUN.