Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Tri to Tri

     Journeys take you where you let them.  When I first got hooked on endurance events I did not know where I was headed.  I thought the 5K was a daunting task (even though I had been doing that distance and more forever).  When you are new to the actual sport of running and hear 5K, you tend to over think what 5000 meters could be. 


     Once that distance is conquered you want more.  Some jump straight to the half-marathon (my favorite distance), while others take the natural step to 10K.  Now with the addition of 8K and 15K races there are more steps a runner can take along the way of their Journey. 


     My Journey has been written here before so I will not bore you with it again.  I have not mastered the Marathon yet but will keep tinkering with that distance as I grow as an athlete.  Having been on “Teams” through @ActiveAmbassadors I have met many awesome athletes.  I noticed that many of them were not just runners but, they were multi-sport athletes.  I only tried multi-sport a long time ago so I was intrigued again. 


     I started working out at the Arena Club earlier this year.  I met an awesome trainer Kathy Wise who pointed me in the direction of their Splash/ Mash/ Dash in March.  I signed up and went and tried to tri.  I was hooked on the rush of the challenge of three events.  While at a Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) Soldier Ride in Atlanta I heard about the WWP Triathlon team.  I checked it out and was accepted. 


     I picked three events which I thought fit my crazy schedule.  1 fit perfect the Tri-Rock Asbury Park, NJ one August 24th.  I figured why not do my first open water tri in my home state.  The date was circled and training amped up.  I was swimming whenever possible running as usual and biking on my mountain bike,   Once again being MisFit I was trying to do the training my way not the way. 


     On the weekend before the race I was visiting my family in Tennessee and my mountain bike failed me on hills.  I was frustrated but kept on trucking.  Four days before the race I made the leap and purchased a Giant Defy 5 road bike.  Wow what a difference.  I say that because my Cannondale F7 was what I thought to be great.  This just eclipsed it. 


     Race day came and nerves were a bit more than normal for a race.  I was not nervous about completing the event.  I was nervous about transition.  You can practice going from one to another all day but once your gear is intermingled amongst hundreds of others in tight quarters.  At first I was looking at my Bike and thinking not too crowded should be easy, then in a blink of an eye it was full and the butterflies started churning. 


     Weather caused havoc on the race as Rip currents were in the surf.  The water portion would be canceled and a second run was added.  Change does not bother me so I was ok.  I took my pre-race drink at the approximate time before I thought I would start.  The weather did not just change the race it changed starting waves.  It was over an hour after my anticipated start I took off.  I walked up to the start line which they were doing in wave + wave fashion.  Each wave was broken down into 4 competitors at a time.  It was weird but finally I was running.  The first leg flew by and here I was turning into the feared transition.  I ran through to my row pulled my bike jersey over my head placed my helmet on my head and ran with my bike to the mounting point.  I got on and took off.  About a half mile in I finally strapped my helmet on.  I thought I was crawling but then I was passing a lot of people from the wave in front of me and confidence grew along with speed.  10 miles flew by.  I headed back to the dismount point and into transition.  Ran with my bike to my row to find someone had put their bike and gear on my rack.  I guess the crazy stickers with numbers were hard to understand. 


     1:39 later I was running again but much slower this time.  I should have learned the art of the brick workout!   (printed out the workout today).  I finished and danced with the announcer at the finish line.  Disappointed in no swim and really feeling like a full tri-athlete but felt great to have done it.  Cannot wait till the next events. 
Where is your Journey taking you??


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