Monday, May 04, 2009

Want to do a triathlon? Follow these steps.

The Wildflower weekend was great. We drove to the lake Thursday and set up camp. It rained pretty much all day Friday, but Saturday - race day - was perfect weather. Cloudy but with patches on sun. For those who are interested in doing a triathlon, here are some step-by-step instructions on what to do the day of your tri.

1) Wake up early. Your nerves will probably help with this.

2) Pee. Just like every morning.

3) Put on first coat of sunscreen and your clothes for the day.

4) Pack up all your gear. Wetsuit, earplugs, swim cap, goggles, bib number, flip flops (for after the race), sunscreen, snacks, chapstick, money, towel, water bottles, etc.

5) Eat breakfast. Try to alternate water and gatorade for an hour before you leave.

6) Put on helmet and biking gloves, grab bike, pose for pictures, and then ride down to the lake.

7) In the transition area, find your number. Park your bike and get all your gear set up. You need quick transitions! This means untie your shoes and get them ready to slip on. Attach your bib number to your running jersey with safety pins. Etc.

8) Apply second layer of sunscreen.

9) Drink more water. Eat a PowerBar.

10) Go get marked up. This includes volunteers writing your number on the top of your hands, your arms, the sides of your legs. Your age goes on your left calf. All done in permanent marker.

11) Wait in line a half hour for a porta-potty. You might not need to go when you get in line, but you will have to go once you're at the front of the line.

12) Go back to where you parked your bike. Chat with people around you.

13) Stretch for 20 minutes with friends (Our friend Jen on the right is prego and swam as part of a relay team. She is my hero.)

14) Drink more water and gatorade.

15) Squeeze wetsuit on. Attach timing chip to your left ankle. Grab swim cap, goggles, and earplugs and maneuver your way through the throngs of people to the lake edge.

16) Pray with friends.

17) Line up with your gender and age range (Female 30-34 was mine). Get nervous.

18) As the group ahead of you begins, get in the water with all the other ladies in the precious 3 minutes you have until your race starts.

19) Shriek and exclaim how cold the lake water is.

20) Secretly pee.

21) Wonder how many other ladies are doing the same thing.

22) Get out of the water, line up with your group, wait for the countdown.

"3 - 2 - 1!!!!!!!!!! GOOOO!!!"

The swim is my favorite part. I felt I had trained the most for this section. And plus my adrenalin kicked in and made me feel like I was swimming even faster. I always swim into other people and others always swim into me, but other than that, it was fine.

Got out of the water, ran up to the transition area. Quickly toweled off, threw on biking gear, grabbed bike and GOOOO!!

The bike ride was hilly, but pretty good. I struck up conversations with people as I rode. There is this one killer hill and everyone is going so slow. So why not make some new friends? Everyone's happy to be out there and having a good time. I chatted with a 72 year old man, a pregnant lady, and a seven year old. Yes, anyone can do a triathlon.

Finished bike portion, parked bike, ran out. GOOOO!!!!!!

The run is always the hardest part for me. First of all, I don't enjoy running. I am more of a brisk walker or a slow jogger if I have my neighbor's dogs. And plus I'm so tired after the swim and bike...I just want to stop. But, ya gotta do it to finish.

The best part is of course crossing the finish line. As you come down the chute, people are lined up on both sides, cheering you on. My friends were all there screaming and encouraging me. And then you hear them call your name out on the loudspeaker. Wheee!! I crossed the line, got a medal, and then walked over to the post-race area. Fruit, PowerBars, yogurt and granola, water, gatorade, chairs to sit! Ahhh.

So there ya go. Fabulous weekend. Always fun to see friends and camp together. Always exciting to be around all the other triathletes and feel the energy. Always good to have that feeling of accomplishment when you finish.

See ya next year, Wildflower!

P.S. By the way, on Friday we saw a rattlesnake chillin' five feet from my tent. 5 FEET. He was coiled up at the edge of a hole in the ground. Probably waiting for a gopher or groundhog to pop out so it could feast. Our friend Dave almost walked right on it. Then he thought it would be wise to throw a stick at it. It didn't move. So then Dave POKED IT with a longer stick. The rattler got pissed and dove into the hole with its tail going crazy. Thanks Dave. I feel so safe now. Luckily, a ranger came by and relocated it for the weekend. Freaky.


New Branch said...

you're my hero. GOOOOOOOO pee

Jody said...

That looks intense! Good job!

Haley said...

Way to go Smarsh! So proud of you!

Also, way to go Jen! I can't believe she's prego AND did Wildflower...wait...yes I can. :)

Also step 20 and 21 are my favorite. I'd be there doing exactly the same thing.

Lyds said...

you are amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

who knew?


sarah = available rock star.

Smarshie said...

Thanks friends! Who wants to join us next year!?!?