So I'm about 36 hours out from my 2nd Triathlon. It was great...well...it didn't go so great, but the sense of accomplishment is great!
At the start I was concerned with the paddle portion since I was in a boat I had never been in, a shorter paddle and a completed different paddling position due to the size of the boats. They tell you to never do anything new the day of a race...no new foods, no new clothes, and definitely no new gear! I broke this rule not only did I wear a new shirt, but I had a completely untested kayak, an a new elevated bike seat.
As I set in the water waiting for the start I was feeling scared..then it was go time! Before I knew it I was hit in the head with a paddle, being shoved to the back of the pack. I paddled hard to get anywhere for the first 5 minutes. Finally I get into some open water and kept pushing hard. As I round the turn around I see another paddler who flipped their boat on the turn. I just keep telling myself to keep my core strong and stay stable. I finally get to the end of the paddle and go to run up to transition but my ankle is throbbing because of the shape of the boat and the way I had to position my legs & feet. Out of transition and to the mounting line I hop on my bike feeling pretty good about the 20k to come.
Through the North Shore and then up the ramp to the HOV Lane, I remember this feeling. Burning legs and sweat dripping down my forehead I forge up the 6% grade dodging rumble strips & broken glass. Less than 2 miles to the Perrysville turn around I try to shift from 1st to 2nd gear and my bike is being stubborn. After several attempts, the chain finally pops. Thanks to my wonderful husband I know how to get it back on! After I get through this obstacle and head into the turn around I realize I have 2 flat tires! FANTASTIC! Not! Grabbing a Gatorade at the bottle exchange I head to the lovely bike maintenance station to get some air & a new tube. Standing there for what seemed like eternity I get back on my bike and head back up the ramp. No where else to put it my Gatorade finds a home in my sports bra for about 7 miles.
Sailing down the hill trying to pedal hard my ankle is still throbbing and it feels like I have no power behind it. I realize my rear tire is flat again. Thanks for cleaning the glass off the HOV lane PennDot.
As I come into the dismount I see my amazing husband, my trainer Josh and his gf. It's a welcome sight after a grueling 20k.
Out of transition and into the run, or should I say stumble. My ankle hates me officially at this point. I jog for the first mile and then have to stop and walk for a bit. Making a friend along the trail we run together for a while and then I'm back to walking, then running, then walking, then running...Frustrating! I just want to run already! Finally coming near the end I see my supporters and hop along busting for the finish line. I finished! 2 flats, popped bike chain, busted ankle and all, I made it! I was thrilled to finish my 2nd triathlon.
As I got home I started thinking about my effort and I'm really happy that I've finished but I'm also feeling a little defeated. I wish I could have performed better. A million thoughts go through my head about why, what, how, when, where...but I have to tell myself I did a great job and I should be really proud of what I did!
So I am! I am proud of my accomplishment and I 'm thrilled to have the opportunity to compete in these races. I am looking forward to more great races in the future and hopefully they will be with a 40 lb slimmer Krystyn who is enjoying her goal weight and all the advantages it brings to my races.