At 3:09am, thunder woke me up. My alarm was supposed to go off at 3:11am. So I decided to get up and shower to wake me up. By 3:55am we were on the road and ready to head to Pittsburgh. We picked up my friend Jen on the way so her husband and son didn't have to get up so early and could make it down to Pittsburgh to see her finish.
We got our transition areas ready.
Tim's first transition area is ready!
My area is ready!
We were all ready to go. Tim got in the Allegheny River at 6:45 am. My wave didn't start till 7am. Our coach, Sue, reminded us several times to start out slow.
Jen and I before the race
Tim and I are ready!
I watched Tim get in the river and he was off with all the others with orange caps.
At 7am, my group was off. I felt good and swam at a slow and steady pace. I ended up way to the right of the buoys, which ended up on my left, and had to cut back. I finished my swim around 17 minutes, which I thought I would be. I am not a very fast swimmer but I swam the entire time and didn't have to turn onto my back.
I got to transition and quickly got on my bike, which always gives me anxiety.
The first 6 miles were pretty much a steady incline upward. I was very slow, as I expected but I didn't realize how tough it would get by mile 5. The last 6 miles were downhill which scared me as well. Once I was going 14 mph, I would get so nervous, I would brake. I saw a woman crash because a guy passed her on her right and I stopped to be sure she was okay. She was just shaken up. So I went on my way. I need to learn to go fast and not be so scared. Once I passed 1 hour on the bike, I knew my goal of coming in under 2 hours was crushed. I ended up 1 hour 10 min on the bike!
I saw Tim as I made it in to the transition area. He already had his medal. I pretty much wanted to start crying then because I knew I was really behind, even though he started 15 min before me. I got my baseball cap and was off. My run went well. I only stopped once for Gatorade since I really never stopped to drink anything. My 5K was about 29 min.
I crossed the finish line at 2 hours and 20 seconds.
I was pretty disappointed with my time. Especially when I looked online at the scores and I was last in the age group I was placed in. Even though I am 34, I was in the 35-39 group because I will be 35 this year. If I was in the 30-34 age group, there were a few women that would have finished after me.
I was happy to have my triathlon group, The Mighty Tri Girls and Total Chaos, cheering for me as I finished my 5K. They are such a supportive group and our coach, Sue, is just so amazing.
My husband was 1 hour 25 minutes. He did amazing. I was so proud of him!
So back to the original quote that "....slow progress is progress." I have to remember 15 months ago, I could not ride a bike. I was still meeting Sue behind the Sheraton for her to hold on to my seat and run beside me, holding me up. I barely knew how to do a swim stroke or breathe correctly while swimming. I have come so far in the past 15 months, plus I have 3 children and work part-time.
So I will not quit, although Saturday afternoon, I said I wanted to quit doing triathlons.
I will keep working hard to get better on the bike and get faster swimming.
I hope to do another all-women triathlon next summer. I really enjoyed the atmosphere much better than the triathlon with men involved. It was much more supportive and friendly.
Progress.......I have come so far.