3 words, people! Had. A. Blast....
Great race venue, fun time with awesome people. Isn't that what it's all about?
No matter what my pace was, or how slow I was - it was a fun time and that trumps it all! I realize more and more about myself the more I do these.
Lots of pictures - David (my cameraman did fantastic at taking tons of pics), so apologize up front about the loads of pics, but I just had to share.
David, friend Denine, and I headed out fairly early to Lake Lanier on Sat AM, not so much to get to the race site early but to do more important things - like SHOPPING at the outlet, specifically Nike. So, after only 3 stores we scoured and walked out with less in all of our wallets - we were off. We thought we had plenty of time to get there to get our race packets by cutoff at 4PM, and we did - it was 3:55 when we arrived! Yowza.... We also dropped bikes off at transition.
...and checked out the hill we had to run up to transition after the swim. Complete suckage.
After packet pickup and hotel check-in, we had a lovely dinner with great company at an Italian place. Wes and Dee Dee, Lauren, Kevin and Cathy, Scott, Robin, and Jackie, and us with our friend Denine. It was nice to unwind and since I've done my previous triathlons with no beer the night before, I thought it wouldn't hurt to go the other route this time. Yum-O.
(from left side of table)-Jackie, Robin, Scott, Dee Dee, Wes, Lauren, Cathy, Kevin, Denine, Me, and David)
Morning came really early, 5:15 to be exact. We were out the door by 5:30. By the time we arrived, parked and walked the 10 min walk to transition, we were only 15 min from when they were closing transition. I quickly got my junk organized, body marked and left no time for a bathroom break - Ohhh me. I had to pee from the time we got there til WAY after the race when we had lunch. But, we had time for a photo-op at the Aflac duckie...
No way am I really this serious about this race....
This pic is for Lisa, Marcy, Lori, and Karen!
Lauren and I - red'to'go!
Swim went okay for me. First time I had some really bad congestion in the water, but once I got out off to the left, it wasn't as bad until this one chic kept doing back stroke and running (so to speak) into me. It wasn't "HER" lake... anyhoo. It was so short, and congested that you couldn't quite get into your groove as much as a longer swim. My time (including long climb up the beach and hill) to transition was 14:38.
Swim finish (I'm back right)
T1 just sucked. I used a different helmet and didn't practice buckling it that much, and it took me a while to get it all figured out. Longest transition to date: 2:59.
Bike: (I'm in the middle of the pic) I put on a grey shirt during T1.
The 18 mile bike was, by far, my favorite event today. I'm just really enjoying riding regardless of how fast/slow I go. I'm comfortable shifting, climbing, doing downhills without braking :-), and even getting aero. It was a very nice course, albeit EXTREMELY hilly. There was a hill at about mile 8.5 that was steep, and the majority of the women around me were walking their bikes up. I stayed on mine, even though I was probably going the same speed as they were. We had issues with congested road at about mile 15-16.5 where we got stuck behind a line of cars. That, of course sucked some time out of us.
T2: Better than T1 - First time I didn't put socks on in T2. 1:45, time still not my best. The long way in/out of transition has a lot to do with this as well.
Run: Everytime here lately I get off my bike and run, my lower back is killing me. Today, I didn't have shin splint pains, but back pain. I'm dealing with it, and am going to start rolling my back or just do some consistent stretching. The course was pretty, in the Lake Lanier resort area but again - hilly. I did a run/walk and although I'm disappointed (again), I did what I can. 33:40.
Finally - done!
After some socializing, shopping at the IronGirl tent, and some mimosa and snacks - we were off to get Denine's new bike. She bought a used bike that was up for sale by owner on Sat afternoon. We think she got a great deal on it. We left, and as quickly as we could, we found a place for lunch and had a nice relaxing time out on the balcony.
My idea for unwinding... aka carb re-loading
Big thanks to our chaeffeur, photographer, and race groupie!
We got back to my Mother's house to get Grace and I'd say she was excited to see us.
Looks like we have a future triathlete on our hands...
My buddy, Denine and I train together, especially our rides/runs. We have become good friends and have such a wonderful friendship that I hope continues to grow. I'm glad to have found her. We started off in different waves (she was 5 min ahead of me), and we had a very similar finishing time - about 1 min apart. I wish we could have started together - we would have done the entire tri side-by-side.
Thanks Lisa, for the call, chica! You are such a dear friend!
It's so easy to look at the negative in any race, and look back and say "Why didn't I do this/that?", what if? and have regrets either about training or racing but, it's all a learning experience and no matter how much I seem to complain about this/that, I enjoy what I'm doing. However, I am learning from my mistakes and lack of training. One of the best things about it is that fact that I can just do this - I'm healthy, and I'm setting a good example for my daughter. But, the BEST thing about these sports is the people I've met. I can honestly tell you that everyone of you that I've met has been great and I've enjoyed your company.
(off to read your blogs - soooooo far behind).
3 words, people! Had. A. Blast....