Thursday, June 3, 2010

My First Triathlon

On May 22nd I competed in my very first triathlon. It was a sprint triathlon: 400 yd swim, 13.5 mile bike ride and a 3.3 mile run. I had such a great time! I've wanted to do one for the past couple of years but between pregnancy and recovering from pregnancy it's taken until this summer for me to be ready. A friend of mine here in San Antonio did a couple of them last summer and she recommended the Rockin R triathlon up in Gruene (pronounced "green") near New Braunfels. I wasn't worried at all about the swim or the run. I don't own a bike and haven't ridden one for more than a block or two since college. I borrowed my friend's husband's road bike for the race, having only ridden it around the block twice the night before to get used to the old school gears. Aside from a very sore backside after all was said and done (those bike seats are killer even with a gel pad) I had a blast. Here's my experience told with pictures.
Here are Becca and I at the start of the race. There were 350 participants this year. We're getting our caps and goggles on and psyching ourselves up to jump into that river.

The river this year was 65 degrees and had a strong current. (It's been a cooler wetter spring this year.) It was cold enough to be wetsuit legal - I'm a newbie. I do not have a wetsuit. So I'm just telling myself I'll swim even faster cuz I'll want to get out of the freezing water as fast as I can. Because of the strong current in the river, they also shortened the swim to 275 yd. Each age group had their own color swim cap. I'm in the blue cap below. You probably need to click on the pic to enlarge it to be able to see me. All those bright orangey/red caps were the younger age group that started ahead of me. They had us start by twos. It felt so good to fly by half of them no problem. You'll notice in the pic a lot of orange behind me. Yeah baby! I hadn't been in the pool to swim laps since last summer. Not too shabby, huh? In the picture below, I'm breaststroking to try and see where in the river I am and to make sure I didn't swim into anyone. Everyone was trying to swim as close to the bank as possible to avoid swimming straight into the current.

Luckily someone warned me before the race that I would probably be dizzy upon getting out of the river. They were right. I guess the combination of cold water and swimming fast/breathing hard can lead to hyperventilation. Luckily they had people helping all the competitors out of the water. I was pretty dizzy for a few seconds. I chose to leave the picture of me getting out of the river off this post. It's not a pretty sight. I am proud to say that in my age group my swim time placed me 4th - less than 1 second out of second. If I would've known. . .

Below: Here I am coming back from my 13.5 mile bike ride, running my bike back to it's place in the transition area.

Here I am coming out of the transition area after the bike portion. My quads are jello and do not want to move, but this is a spectator area of the race, so I make myself jog out of there so I don't look like a pansy. Once out of the spectator area, the first stretch of the run is uphill - ouch! So my friend becca and I walk for a little while till we can breath again and move our legs.

Here I am coming into the finish. I actually felt really great for the last part of the run. I was feeling pretty proud of myself for completing my very first triathlon. (The little black thing around my ankle is the timing chip.)

Matt had me flex for a few shots - you know, show off my buffness. . .HA!

I was definitely on a high after the race. I had so much fun. Here are Becca and I goofing off a little and celebrating.

A little love for Matt and the camera. Like I said - I was on a high and feeling pretty goofy.

I had such a great time and can't wait to do another!


Becky said...

Congratulations! That is awesome. I've been toying around with doing one of those this summer. I just can't get excited about swimming in a river though. You are much tougher than I am. GREAT JOB!!

Jessica said...

Go GIRL!!! I really couldn't do a 13 mile bike ride, I hate anything that involves usisng my quads. Proud of ya sister!!!

Sarah F said...

Way to go, Jen! Great pictures too.

The Kids