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The Past is Still Recorded Online

This blog is out of use and out of date. I am now posting on mercedesorten.blogspot.com

Monday, May 11, 2009

The Rookie - Race Report

The Rookie Tri was definitely a successful race for me. The trials and tribulations leading up to the tri were a different story. There were flat tires, panicked changing of tires, lost bicycle gloves, forgotten sunscreen, missing packets, missing chips, flip flops put on the wrong feet...you name the mistake, I made it. Thankfully with a little help from my friends and the AWESOME volunteers (Thanks to Michelle L!!) I was able to make it into the water with my goggles, chip, and swim cap.

Everything went awry before the race, but miraculously, when the gun went off everything became crystal clear. Well, clear aside from the murky clay filled water of Texas Ski Ranch.

The swim felt short to me, but triathlon swimming always tends to feel short to me. I found a place near the front and managed to squirm my way up next to Natasha and swim in her wake. It was fun! A girl tried to pull me down by the ankle, but I swam in a forward relaxed motion and began to enjoy myself as I broke away from the pack. I was doing great until my vision was completely obstructed by dark black clay. I had to breast stroke and get my head out of the water to avoid the smell and the low visibility. Needless to say, this huge amount of dark black mud after the turn around really slowed me down. I have never been more ready to get out of the water. Not saying it was bad, it was just...yucky smelling!

I ran up the requisite hill to transition area and goofed around a bit more than I should have while I got my cycling shoes, sunglasses, and helmet on. As I ran out of transition with my bike, I noticed that there were a lot of bikes still on the 29 and under rack. This made me feel good. I felt even better when a volunteer commented on my mounting technique...he said, "Now that's how you get on a bike!" nothing like a good complement while you are doing what you love. And I raced off, picking off a lot of the slower men who started their swim ahead of me. I loved the scenery at the beginning of this ride, the tree cover was cooling and the flat terrain begged you to speed. I learned later from my cycling mentor that I need to shift up on my big ring so I can get even faster on the flats, especially when I'm still feeling strong. As per my previous post -- once a Rookie, always a Rookie (asking questions and getting answers is the best!!)

For once I was passing people on the bike, and it felt really good. I was feeling very confident until I heard the familiar voice of my cycling mentor from behind me "Hey chickadee!" she called as she passed me. I was happy I had my friend there to push me. And push me she did!! The terrain was getting a bit more hilly at this point and I just kept picking people off. I love hills on the bike. As she passed me I latched onto her wheel and would not let go. We chatted for a bit, yelling random stuff to one another and then I passed her back with gusto on a big hill at mile 8 or so. I never saw her again until the run turn around.

*Photo by Kevin Saunders*

I dismounted my bike and received ANOTHER complement on how I did that. Honestly, I don't remember what it was but it was nice to hear nonetheless.

I saw my idol, Michelle G, holding down the transition area as I ran past her on my bike. For once I was sad that the bike was over. I wanted to keep going on my Fizgig!

I threw on my shoes (a little too loose - looks like someone needs to get those quick laces) and sprinted out of transition. I had my eye on a 28 year old female in front of me. I took a goo and pulled 7:22 min/miles...picking off many a older guy as I went. Unfortunately, I was unable to catch the 28 year old. She stayed consistently at about 15 m ahead of me the ENTIRE time. That run course felt like it was uphill both ways to me, but I dug deep and thought about my running buddies Jodi, Becky, and Jennifer and I channeled their strength. I saw the female age group leaders and my buddy Mark pass by. There was no catching him on this course. I needed about another mile and I could have passed the 28 year old and the amazing Mark. Next time!!

I crossed the finish line, drank pure sport and then promptly turned around to find my buddies. I saw my cycling mentor cross the finish line with a smile of exhaustion on her face. It was a great moment as this triathlon was her first. Then my special crossed and the eating, massage, and other post-race festivities ensued.

I placed 6th in my age group. I was quite happy.

Pretty good race for a Rookie, right?

Current book I'm reading: Total Immersion

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Friday, May 08, 2009

Me? A future Ironman... AND a Rookie? Yes sir-ee!

This Sunday I will be competing in Jack and Adam's Rookie Triathlon!


And I have been pondering the question, after 4 or 5 triathlons and duathalons, am I still a Rookie?

When do you go from Newbie (or my preferred spelling Noobie) to Rookie to Amateur to Experienced to Age Grouper to Pro? Where am I in the grand scheme of things in the triathlon world? After about about 5 minutes of pondering, I'm going to say that yes, I'm probably still a Rookie.

As a Rookie though you are always learning. As a Rookie you are always improving. As a Rookie you are always asking the right (perhaps crazy) questions and finding answers. How could that be bad? Heck, I'm a Rookie Future Ironman, and honestly I'm so excited about that. Rookie-Future-Ironman. Could that be the new name of my blog? No, I don't think it's catchy enough.

The Rookie Tri this weekend is just a little dip in the water, about 300 meters, then the bike is 11.1 mile over flat terrain and I've heard a few and rolling hills. The run will be fast, so I've heard -- it is flat and short. I will have it in my head that I'm doing a 5K and I'll actually be doing 2 mi. I'm gunna kill it on the run. I am totally stoked. I'll report how I do on Monday!

Oh and I want to mention how cool it is that the slowest swim time will WIN a free swim clinic courtesy of T3. That's neat.

Anyway, wish me luck!

Current book I'm reading: The Wednesday Letters and Superwomen by Jodi Buren

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I am a marathoner. That means I have a tummy that could sieze a spider.