Thursday, April 29, 2010


Or at least a mini-triathlete. :)

I survived the St. Anthony's Meek & Mighty Triathlon last weekend. Actually, I did more than survive - check this out!

That's right. I got 3rd place in my age group! And no, there were not just 3 people in my age group. :) I got 3rd out of 9 women age 24-29! I have NEVER been so proud of myself.

The triathlon was the MOST fun I have ever had doing an athletic event. I was terrified the night before, running around like a crazy woman, stressing about every little thing. I woke up at 4:50am (ten minutes before my alarm) and was READY to go! I ate some toast, almond butter and banana (my favorite pre-race breakfast) and really sick to my stomach. Uhoh. Nerves maybe? But my sisters and my friend Katie were picking me up at 5:30am so I gathered myself and was ready to go when they got there. After fighting to add my bike to the already full bike rack, we headed downtown.

One of the best things about this race? Being local. We took the back roads to the starting line and were able to park RIGHT by the race start. SWEET. We grabbed our bikes and our bags and headed to the transition area. First we were body marked. I felt soooo cool at this point. I actually LOOKED like a triathlete! We headed into transition and were thrilled with our placement. I was on the end of a rack and we were all toward the bike start end of transition. This meant a much longer time running after the swim, but I didn't mind! We got all our gear set up and then headed to the pool. (Yes, the picture is from after the race - sorry!)

The breakdown for this mini tri was:

200 yard pool swim

5.4 mile bike ride

1 mile run

And it was PERFECT. We all lined up on the pool deck and my nerves were racing through my veins. They started each swimmer about 10 seconds apart and I was 65th in the pool. As soon as people started jumping in, I felt better. I was afraid I would be the worst swimmer out there. Not even close. I saw every stroke known to man - even a few I think were created right there in the pool! I jumped in and quickly started passing people. Then I quickly got passed by my friends Katie and KellyAnn. They have been swimmers all their life. And it showed. We swam "serpentine" - up one lane, under the rope, back the next lane. I tried to keep count, but thought I still had two laps to go when I saw the stairs! SWEET! I got out of the pool and ran toward transition.

Transition went really well. I decided to forego a shirt, so I just threw on my workout capris (with my race number already pinned to them), put shoes and socks on, grabbed my helmet and headed out of transition. I got on my bike too early though and had to get off and walk/run it to the "start bike" line. Whoops. Once I was out on the bike course, I felt GREAT. I had only ridden one time in training (yikes) but I think all the spin classes really helped! I started flying by people on my little mountain bike. I really gained some ground on the bike and enjoyed most of it - except the awful head wind we had to deal with for most of the ride!

I kept thinking "Keep pushing - after this, all you have to do is run ONE mile!" I got to transition with a big grin on my face. I had no idea how I was doing time-wise, but I felt great! I racked my bike, took off my helmet, threw on a baseball cap, and headed out on my run. Oh and I took a nice swig of Gatorade too - I needed it! I started running and...felt like I was running in quicksand. Holy crap. I'm a slow runner anyway, but I felt like I had lead in my shoes! I just kept pushing through. I couldn't stop smiling. I felt so proud of myself! I was sure I was running a 15 minute mile, but I didnt care. I just kept going. And then...I was rounding the last curve. My dad was there cheering me on as he had been at every point during the race. Those cheers mean SOOOO much to me! And then there it was - the FINISH LINE! I raced toward it (in my mind I was flying - in reality, it was a slow jog - haha). I finished with a HUGE smile. The announcer even commented about my smile. I couldn't believe it. I AM A TRIATHLETE!

I ran around for the next half hour, cheering on my friends and sisters and everyone did a GREAT job. My friend KellyAnn finished first in our age division - no suprise there!



Here is my overall time/split time:

Overall time: 42:31! (I was hoping for under 45 minutes - I crushed my goal!)

Swim: 5:05 (better than I thought it would be)

T1: 3:39 (need to improve on this!)

Bike: 21:53 (averaged 14.8 mph - not bad!)

Run: 10:46 (actually REALLY good for me - especially since it was so hard!)

If anyone is thinking about doing a triathlon, I would HIGHLY recommend doing a mini tri like this one. I've already signed up for my next one - May 22! I'll give you the details of that one soon, but it will be a step up in difficulty from this one. And I can't wait!!

Anyone else out there thinking about doing a triathlon?

Saturday, April 3, 2010

ESF 5K Recap!

Don't worry - I didn't die out there on the race course! It has just taken me a while to has been crazy busy lately! is the race recap (just a few weeks late!)

6:25am: Woke up, five minutes before my alarm. Love when that happens. Crawled out of bed and started getting tried. Tried not to wake my hubby. Didn't work. Dressed in "race day" tank and shorts. Checked the weather. BRR! Debated wearing running pants. Really glad later that the shorts won. Made some breakfast - whole wheat toast, almond butter, banana. YUM.

7:00am: Left the house. Drove to Tampa. Sunrise was BEAUTIFUL. Tried to get a few pictures by hanging my head out the window. Hubby was more worried about the camera than my head. Typical.

7:15am: Hubby's advice all morning has been "sprint the whole thing." Hubby establishes his goal for me - 30 minutes. Tells me if I run the 5K in under 30 minutes, we can have a baby. He plays dirty. His motivating cheer the rest of the day? "RUN FOR THE BABY!" Crazy boy.

7:30am: Arrive at the race course. Say hi to friend Dom who is volunteering at the event. Love her! Check in, get race number. Try to warm up. Tummy is nervous. No bueno. Try to ignore it. Begin focusing on the blister on my foot. Hubby tells me to ignore that too. Can we just start already?

7:55am: Crowd begins to assemble at the starting line. Starting line is a yardline on a football field. Start of the race? Run across the football field. Worked pretty well actually.

8:00am: They weren't kidding when they said it was an "intimate race". About 500 runners. An old guy stands in front of us and shouts directions. He also shouts "Ready, Set, Go" to start the race. Love it.

8:01am: Running. Through. Sand. After the grassy field was some THICK sand. Not packed. At all. Remember this later.
8:05am: Finally on the "real" course. SUPRISE! It's a trail run. Totally cross country. Not prepared for this. People around me are exlaiming, "There are hills!" This is like a foreign land.

8:06am: See my husband standing beside the course, cheering me on. He has NO idea how much this meant to me!

8:07am: Pass a sign that says "2 miles". Huh? I've only been running for 7 minutes. Could I have just run the fastest mile of my life? No way. I keep running.

8:11am: Pass a sign that says "1 mile". Thoroughly confused. Then I figure it out. It's a loop. I just finished one mile. The "2 mile" sign is for the next loop around. Talk about depressing. I run on.

8:15am: The first place running is lapping me. He's almost done. He's flying. I trudge on.
8:18am: First walk break. Dangit. So much for my goal of not walking.

8:23am: Saw my husband again. Tried to get him to jump onto the course and run with me. No such luck. His foot is still too sore from his Relay last weekend. Just seeing his face gives me motivation.

8:25am: Walk again. Dangit. Make myself start running again.
And so it goes. Tried to run as much as possible, but walked more than I wanted.

8:32am: Finish my second loop. Back to the straightaway for the finish. Running my heart out. Looking for my husband. Uhoh. I'm back to the sandy part of the race. And it feels like quiksand. Just. Want. To. Finish.

8:36am: FINISH LINE! My husband is there waiting for me. Official time: 36:35. Not great. But I'm fine with it! I'll just work to be faster at the next one!

Worst part of the race: The sand pit.

Best part of the race: My husband cheering me on.
Oh and update? I ran 4 miles this past Tuesday!! I may become a runner after all!

Friday, April 2, 2010

I Am Running a 5K in the Morning!

Crazy, right?

I'll be running in the Epilepsy Services Foundation's "Hare Racing Experience" tomorrow morning. My goal? Run the whole thing! I'd love to run fast, but I'm trying not to set unrealistic expectations. I'll let you know how I do!

Wish me luck!