Monday, April 6, 2009

Smithfield Sprint Triathlon

On April 4th I did the Smithfield Sprint Triathlon, in Smithfield, VA- which was only about 30 min from where we live.  I had participated in a beginner triathlon class at the YMCA close to our home, and this was the race we all were training for.  Training consisted of at least 5 workouts a week, working in intervals for speed and long workouts on the weekend.  We practiced doing transitions and  learned all about the gear.  I had to make quite an investment in biking gear since I didn't have any, and got all of my newbie moments (like falling off the bike after not being able to clip out) out of the way before race day.  

My friend Tamara and her kids Daylynn and Aaralyn were in town for a few days, and came to watch the race and cheer for me!  Tamara and Marshall took all these pics, and took care of the kids all day in the sun and wind.  Thank you both so much!

The race wasn't scheduled to start until 10:00AM, and we arrived right around 9:15.  Then I had to hurry to set up my transition area, stand around, and get more nervous until my start time of 10:57:45.  The race distances: 300 meter swim, 10 mile bike, 5K (3.1 miles) run.  My goal was to finish in under 1 hour and 30 minutes....well, really my goal was to finish without getting DQ'd.

Setting up my transition area- next time I'm bringing a bucket to sit on while I put on my shoes, those people were smart!  Yes, I plan on doing this again! 
It was a cool and very windy day.
Since it was an indoor swim, they had a swimmer start every 15 seconds.  This is not a very flattering photo, but shows how they had us lined up on deck watching all the swimmers before us.  You can see that they marked our numbers on us with permanent marker!  I have to point out that I passed the guy in front of me, and the guy in the yellow cap on the swim!  Yeah!  (It's okay, I'm fairly sure they passed me later on the bike).  We zigzagged our way through pool.
It was hard not to burn all my energy in the first 100m, the adrenaline was pumping!

Here I am in Transition 1.  I tried to dry off, put on my jersey, bike shorts, socks (putting dry socks on wet dirty feet is hard to do quickly!), bike shoes, sunglasses, and bike helmet.
Then I had to grab my bike and run out of Transition to the bike course.  You couldn't get on the bike until you got to the mounting area.  My bike is a Raleigh Supercourse road bike.  It is carbon fiber, very light, and surprisingly easy to ride!  I got it at Bikes Unlimited in Williamsburg, and I highly recommend them.

This is me returning from the bike ride.  It was VERY windy, and not what I would call a "flat course" as they advertised on the race website.  There was a blind left turn that headed uphill, but I was warned by another rider about it and managed to downshift before I hit the hill.  Another teammate of mine dropped her chain during the ride and had to stop and fix it.  Luckily she figured it out and still finished the race.
In the dismount area, I got clipped out WAY ahead of time to make sure I didn't have any problems.  The volunteers and spectators were all so positive and were yelling things like "Looking great!" and "Keep it up!"
BIKE TIME: 37:10 (my fastest ever!)

In Transition 2, I got to my rack and people had put their bikes back sloppily, so I had to take the time to slide people's bikes out of the way and shove mine in there.  Then I changed shoes, took off the helmet and headed for the 5K run.
Already pretty tired.
Leaving transition for the last time.

Maddox waiting patiently while I ran.
At the finish!!  The beginning of the run was the hardest, by the end I actually felt really good!  We followed a painted path of pink pigs feet through Smithfield.
RUN TIME: 34:21

Drinking water right after the finish.
I'm really happy that I took the YMCA class, I can't imagine doing anything like this without the help and coaching from other people!  I'm glad to be doing athletic things again after having the baby, and I am now training for the MS 150 bike ride in May!  I'll post more about that later (along with a plea for donations I'm sure).  :)  All of this will help me stay busy while Marshall is gone.


Em said...

Way to go, Mary!!!! You're my hero!!! I am so impressed - your times were GREAT! I love you!

Jessie and Nathan said...

Wow, that all sounds amazing! Congrats on doing so well!