Sunday, June 24, 2012

A Mini Pity Party Then Once Again Moving Forward

A very pretty sight for a tri 
the first swimmers are in the water

I wasn't sure if it was a good idea but today I went and watched the race that was going to make me a triathlete.  I was prepared to be sad but wanted to observe a tri through the eyes of a future participant. I have been to some tris but only as a spectator who never ever wanted to do a tri.  Things change.

I got there before the start. It was a gorgeous day although when I left home it was 48 degrees and that hadn't changed much when I arrived.  Most people had wet suits on but not everyone.  I heard the race director giving instructions and then people headed over to the start. There were 4 waves and I would have been in the fourth one.

This would have been my wave.  Sigh.

And they're off. I noticed some people walked in quite
a ways.  This might be a good thing for me to do.  

I had already indulged in some sorrowful thoughts in the last few days even before I arrived. Yes, I know I can do one later this summer.  But this one was the one I spent literal months preparing for. Someone said I had more time now. Well, no because first I need to build back up lost fitness.  I also liked this one because I thought other people might be doing their first one. I don't think that will be true at the end of August. Everyone will have had some practice when I do compete. Do I know this is true?  Of course not, but it is me being negative.  Plus I found out today that the August one is coupled with a half ironman distance race.  Great.  Once I  start up again and get somewhat ready I plan to find a race I can do before the end of the summer one.  

I must admit I did get teary more than once today. I was glad I went but I so strongly felt I should be in the race, not watching it.  Oh well.  No one pushed me off the bike.

At the end of the swim

First I was amazed and I will say amazed at how far 1/3 of a mile looked! Wow!  There were some poor swimmers for sure but even as poor swimmers they were much faster than I am.  I do like that I saw the course and now when (not if) I go swim there I can kind of practice the course.  All the women would have come in well before me. There was one guy I would have beaten and I pray  he comes back in August.  As he was getting out of the water I heard him say he should have done a relay.  Yeah, good idea.  Not for him .... for me!  He actually appeared to quit but I guess he didn't and he wore a life jacket. I didn't know that was allowed but the guy in the rowboat was heaping compliments on him like crazy for not giving up. :) He went to the transition area and got on a bike but I didn't see him again. I did see a few older women, one much older woman.  I saw no one I knew from anywhere, not a familiar face in sight.  I didn't pay a lot of attention to the transition from swim to bike which I intended to so fail there.  One of the later women who came out was yelling she didn't know how to get out of her wet suit - man could I relate to that - but she did it.  I saw women biking and running in just a bathing suit. That is so something I would not want to do.
Bikers are coming in and runners are heading out.

Now runners are coming in too.

I heard some people saying the bike course was hilly so I guess I do need to ride it a few times before the end of August. Shouldn't be a problem.  There were bikers that looked rather impressive.  I got more into the slower people though!  I always always always love how supportive the crowd is.  I saw so many big grins as people were cheered for and encouraged on.  It was a pretty small race, very easy to spectate.

Some runners were finished way before most bikers even came in.  Everyone looked impressive to me.  And they all seemed fast!  For the most part racers were quite spread out.  I had a time in my mind I thought I could maybe do this race in and believe me others were all done. Results aren't up but I am curious to see them. I didn't stay for the very end as I had a friend stopping by. Results are up.  I actually did see the last racer. 

I paid attention to the whole dismount thing
and which way to go.  

I did watch a few people transition from bike to run.  I saw that if
you are later (slow like me) it can be harder to rack your bike
because it is crowded.  Looked like a pain.

It will be sweet to see this as a finishing triathlete for sure.

I do know that watching this definitely whet my appetite for doing a tri, no matter my speed. I just want to prove to myself I can do it.  I like the idea of being out there for a long time but not all running.

A last look at the lake - should have brought my suit and I could
have tried swimming.  

What does my cat have to do with all this? Well, I get home and grab my camera to go upload the pictures.  The damn lovely cat sees me heading for the computer and does his own sprint to beat me to the chair. And he won as he's pretty fast when he has a goal. I hope to emulate him sometime this summer.


Kate Geisen said...

As hard as it was to go, you were smart to do it. I'm always so much more comfortable when I'm not seeing something for the first time. Funny about your cat. That's how my youngest is with our bathroom. :)

Ransick said...

That was a good idea to go to the race. I agree the swim looks way longer when it is laid out in long lines versus thinking of it in number of laps. For my tri today, I covered laps to number of strokes and that seemed to help a bit.

Funny about the cat. When my wife goes up to bed, one of our cats runs up there to get the best spot.

Pahla said...

Okay, I totally had tears in my eyes reading this post until I got to the part about your cat, which made me laugh out loud! As hard as it was to be a spectator, what a great opportunity to really scope out where to go and what to do when it's your turn. You are going to eat that course up!

Jill said...

I'm glad you went to watch the race. I know it wasn't easy but I think it gave you some answers to some of your mental questions along with just being such a good sport about it. I had to eat the cost of several races with my foot and it was tough, but there's reasons behind these things and I am convinced somehow they make us stronger. You're getting to do the race this summer and I have no doubt you're going to rock it!!

Amy said...

You know what I was thinking as I read your post? That this is the silver lining from your injury - you got to go and really watch the race first, observe and learn so much that is going to make your first time doing it that much better informed.
Hope your recovery continues to go well!

Johann said...

I agree with everyone that you certainly did the smart thing to go watch the race. I would have done that as well. You sound much more pumped now and I know you will rock that race in August. Have a great week!

Fran said...

You can certainly do a tri Andrea but stop comparing yourself to others, especially when it comes to the swimming. When the day is there you are going to do it and you're doing it your way. You can do this!

Char said...

You earnt your pity party in all the hours that you spent training. You're allowed to be disappointed. But I'm glad you went and checked out everything. It sounds like you learnt heaps - like training on hills for the bike leg and learning to take your wet suit off. Your fitness will return faster than you think and you'll be ready for August.

Kate Geisen said...

It was Soooo dusty out there, and being out there so long... You should have seen how filthy my poor white jersey was after falling 3 times. :-/ Thanks to oxyclean and shout, it actually looks pretty clean now. :)

Yea for swimming!!

Darlene said...

Now you will be even more prepared in August!

Black Knight said...

A very fast cat.
I understand your feeling, it's hard to watch instead to race, however I think you have had the time to study the tactic for a better tri in august.
Heal soon.

Liz said...

Glad spectating whet your appetite - you'll be doing a tri soon!

Kandi said...

I thought about you on Sunday and wondered if you went to watch. Looks like you learned a lot. I doubt you'd be the first beginner in August. If I were in VT and had to choose between a June tri and an August tri for my first, I'd choose August because I'd assume the water would be warmer. I was nervous about the water temp for my tri in Maryland in early June but this year the lake was surprisingly warm!