Monday, June 25, 2012

Long Branch Triathlon

So I survived my second triathlon- and had a lot of fun doing it! It was my first ocean swim (ever!) and I was pretty happy with how it all turned out. I usually get such bad nerves on race day that doing little low key local races like this are super useful for me in building confidence and gaining familiarity with racing. My husband and mother-in-law came to cheer me on- it was awesome to have my own race photographer and cheering section!

Serious "I hope I don't drown face"

Getting ready to get in the water...

I am sure I am thinking- "this seemed like such a good idea when I signed up for it.."

The ocean swim wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it might be. It was very short- only 300 meters, and I think they may have made it even shorter because the ocean was very very choppy.  The best surprise was that the water was not nearly as cold as I thought it would be- thank god for wetsuits and global warming! 

I made it! (And there are even people behind me- score!)

The first transition was great- compared to the crazy uphill distance we had to run in Las Vegas, it was a downright treat for transition to be so close to the beach and the start of the bike leg. I trotted (bike shoes are so awful to run in) off to the road determined to make up some time on the bike. 

Getting on my bike...

Those clipless pedals are tricky! 

Off to catch up with some ladies (and men!) and pass them. 

The bike went very well. It was more-or-less a straight out-and-back race, and very flat- which was ideal for my first race on the new bike. I even got out on the tri bars a bit and realized how much faster it makes you to use them! I did my fair share of passing, including some men who were in the previous heat, and only got passed near the end of the race by some very intense guys who I imagine were doing the long course triathlon. My only problem was that I missed the turn off back to transition and ended up riding a full extra mile before I got back on course. I certainly lost some time there- but oh well. Wish those High School girl volunteers had been more interested in the race than their chatting! 
 Getting the bike back on the rack in T2. 

And off to finish strong with the run. 

I wasn't too happy at this point, but it was way more about being frustrated by missing the turn off on the bike and losing time than it was about the run. My legs felt surprisingly un-brike-like, which was a nice change.
Almost there! Big smile for the camera. 

I didn't have a great run- but it was totally my fault. You cannot wear headphones during triathlons (or atleast you are not supposed to- I saw plenty of people with them!) which is really rough for me since I love to run with music and find a well thought out playlist to be an important part of my race. With out music I get a little bored and am much more likely to take a walk break. This race was pretty small, and I was not in the front of the pack, so a lot of the run was pretty lonely and I didn't run in to very many people. It was lovely on the boadwalk so I tried to enjoy that, but I mainly wanted the race to be over and to take a shower! 

It was great to see my husband as I came up to the finish line, I love when he comes out to cheer for me and take pictures! Over all my time was not awesome, but was a real improvement from last time, especially on the bike and it was a good learning experience. I was horribly nervous in Las Vegas- I mean crazy, shaking, sick to my stomach nervous, and this race I was pretty calm. The more time I can practice race day conditions, the easier I think it will be for me on the important races. I still have a lot of work to do, but I was very pleased with my performance and thrilled to get another tri under my belt! 

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