Sunday, July 21, 2013

Englewood Triathlon

July 13, 2013

Carolyn and I are on the road early, heading down to Englewood. It's raining most of the way down to the race, but weather forecast shows the rain will move out by race start. Hope they are right! We get to the race location faster than we thought. It is super dark out still. There are two guys trying to set up the fencing around the transition area. Not sure how they can see what they are doing. There are no lights for them! We head over to a table that looks like packet pickup and learn we have almost half an hour to wait. Pickup was a little later than we had thought. We go back to the car to hang out for a bit. At 5:45, we walk back over to get our packets. We get our bibs and shirts, but learn that the company in charge of timing is not there yet to give us our chips. So we head back to the car to hang out, get our stuff ready and grab our bikes. By the time we get done with this, we see that a long line has formed near the packet pickup. We head over and find out it is for body marking and chip pickup. I have never seen a single line that long before for body marking! After waiting for about 10 minutes, a woman comes over and tells people to form 3 lines for the body marking. Finally I get my numbers marked and head right over to get my chip. We head into transition and find our spots. I get everything set up, then we head to the bathrooms before going on to the beach.

Swim (400 meters): Carolyn and I were in the last of 4 swim waves, so once we got on the beach, we had a few minutes to wait as we watched each wave go off. The water was pretty choppy, but it looked like we were going to be swimming with the current. We got lined up just behind the first row of swimmers and soon were off! Right away I realized it was a mistake to start so close to the front. I could not stretch out and swim with all the people around me! I stopped, while I could still stand, and let the mass go ahead. Finally I was able to swim, with just a few people left around me. I made it around the first bouy, turned to the right and headed north. I had one lady swimming right behind me. She kept hitting my foot with her hand. This was very annoying because there was NO ONE around us! I picked up the pace a little to get some space from her. Soon, I could see a the majority of the swimmers way ahead of me, no one around me and just a small group behind me. I got off course briefly, swimming our a little to much, but got it corrected, soon making my way around the second buoy and swimming into shore. Just off the beach, we hit the timing mat. We then had to run through the parking lot into transition. There were little tiny gravel pieces to run over that did not feel good on the feet. ouch! Once I got to my bike, I dried off my face, put on my sunglasses and helmet, dried off my feet and then put on my socks and shoes before grabbing my bike and heading out of transition. Swim - 11:44. T1 - 2:10 (#10 out of 12 in the swim! yikes!)

Heading out to ride 13 miles.

Bike (13 miles): Heading out on the bike, I got a good pace going pretty quick. I kept checking my garmin to see my speed, but realized since I had changed it to multisport, it wasn't showing my speed, but my overall time. :( I wasn't sure how fast I was going, but I was going fast enough to start passing people. I managed to pass over ten people before getting to the turn around! There were a couple of giant puddles we had to ride around, but otherwise the course was pretty good. The first few miles were on nice, smooth road. Then we got to an older section of road, which was not as smooth. We got to the turn around, which was a very sharp turn. The three riders ahead of me actually got off their bike and walked it! I rode it slow, then picked up the pace and passed all 3 of them right after the turn. :) By now I am super hot and just dripping in sweat. Yuck! We had a bit of headwind going back, but not too bad. I managed to pick off a few more riders before turning back into transition. I racked my bike. Took off my sweaty tri top and swapped it for my lighter tank, that already had my bib attached. Switched my helmet for a visor and headed out of transition. Bike - 45:51, T2 - 1:00 ( moved up to 4th out of 12 on the bike!)

Run (5k): We pass by the finish line as we head out of transition. Some of the first athletes are finishing as we head out! We run out of the parking area, cross the street and then turn left at the corner. Across the street, I can see runners heading in the other direction. I yell out to Ren and then Patti. They are way ahead of me! I am feeling pretty good and passing people who are struggling in the heat. Just a bit before the turn around, I see Carolyn on the other side of the road. I hope to catch up to her before the end of the race. I make the turn, and pass by the water stop, since I have my hand held bottle. It's about half a mile back to the main road, where we turn left, away from the finish. I pass a few more runners, before I need to slow down myself. I am getting cramping in my side. We head south for a bit, then turn to the right, running down a side street, before joining up to the main road again. I stop at the last water stop, refilling my water bottle and dumping a cup of water on my head. It was nice and cold! It felt great. It gave me a little boost to pick up the pace again. I managed to pass a woman who was in my age group, about a block before the finish. I powered it in and finished strong! Run - 29:47. Finish 1:30:34. 4th overall finish!

I find Carolyn just past the finish line. We grab water bottles and find a shady spot near her bike. The woman I had passed a few blocks before the finish comes in and is not looking good. Her friend takes her over to another shady spot and is soon yelling for medical. I go over the the finish area and yell for medics too, but it takes 4 or 5 times of me yelling at people for someone to actually come over! I show them where the woman is and they rush to her. She seems to recover after a while. Didn't find out what happened. But since it was so hot, I'm sure the heat was a big factor. We head out of the transition area looking for food. The only thing that looks any good is at the Smoothie King table, where they have little sample cups. I end up with two of those before we head over to check results. I see that I have 4th in age group and Carolyn gets 6th in hers. We take a few photos before the rain hits. Happy that it held off! The rain lasts for only a few minutes. It's time to pack up. We head to transition, which is not being watched by volunteers! Anyone can walk in a grab whatever they want! Thankfully, all our stuff is still there. We pack up and head home. A good day of racing. :)

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