SOooo...the story goes:
We started to leave Bakersfield on Friday only to find our car tire was flat! Being new tires and from Costco, we waited until the local Costco opened and got it fixed and were out of there by noon. This put us behind the 8-ball so to speak as we traveled through Oakland and CA Friday afternoon rush hour traffic. To say it was slow is an understatement but we finally arrived on Friday around 6:00. The "hotel" is not "quaint" to me. It is more like an overpriced basic cabin with nothing more than 2 beds and a couple of lamps that don't give out enough light. No cell service, no phones, no TV (think rustic only worse). Squeeky beds, doors that won't close, uneven floors-the worst place we have ever stayed. I like my luxury after my races-like a bathtub for instance-call me crazy! It was clean however, and pretty noise free. And very close to Johnson Beach, the start of the race.
After practicing and packet pick-up as I mentioned on Saturday, we ate at the same restaurant we had eaten the night before-dinner of pasta, etc..and called it an early night. Good nights sleep with awakening at 5:00. Now here is where the advantage of staying a 6 min walk from the race start kicks in. We left at 6:15, walked our bike over and were there at transition by 6:25. My wave went off at 7:18. There were 2000 people competing so this was a big race! I always feel nervous before these things and say why the hell am I doing this, etc..So many people, so many nerves-yikes! It turns out the water was 70 degrees so my call to wear a full wetsuit was a good one. The morning air is cold here too. The Russian River is beautiful-the prettiest swim ever, I think. I kissed H and said good luck-his wave was 8 min behind me.
Swim: My wave of 45+ women started and I just started swimming at a pretty good pace right away. So nice not to get bopped around like IMCDA. And the warmth! Oh my! That was the best feeling-to swim in warm water at last. It seemed like it took forever to get to the turnaround buoy but as the course is lined up, at the turnaround, you are about 2/3 the way there. The current was suppose to be flowing with you coming back but I never really felt it. I thought I may break 40 min, finally and I did. 7th out of the water in my AG of 25 women-
T-1 was very slow. Since there were 2 transition sites, you had to put all your wetsuit stuff in a bag with your number on it and I forgot to put my lucky transition rug in it so had to run back and do that. I am very superstitious when it comes to my transition rug-I have used it since I started racing..
Bike: There was a pretty thick fog to start the race but the day before it had burned off by 10:00. Not on race day. I was cold from the get-go on the bike. The decision not to wear arm warmers was not a good one! I was cold the whole bike but I guess that made me ride faster! I felt good on the bike and my new Zipps. My tire was screwed up the day before and a mechanic at the expo fixed it and YEA!! I was flying! The course seems so much harder when you drive it than it really feels. I remember this from Barb's Race 5 years ago. Chalk Hill, at mile 46 is kind hard but at the end, I was like, Is that it? I peed on the bike several times, H is appalled by that. So I was pretty disgusting by the end. I remember my friend Maria saying, Triathlon is such a messy sport! Hey-even the pros pee on the bike! I felt great on the bike and again got 7th in my AG on the bike!
T-2: Oh lord, it was long. You have to run at least 500 yards to transition and then another couple of min to my T-2 where my stuff was waiting where I left it the day before. T-2 and the finish is in a whole different town than the start, at Windsor High School. I was a bit disoriented at T-2 and took me awhile to find my stuff. Then I did change my socks as I was a bit of a mess.
T-2 time: A painfully slow 5:56
Run: The good news is the sun came out finally! And a nice breeze made it nice and cool. Perfect weather..Well, here is where things seemed to fall apart a bit. At first, my hamstrings were cramped and so tight I could barely run. Then both my feet went numb (didn't this happen last time I did Barb's Race? Why yes it did. WTF?). I took 2 Advil, salt tablets, took my shoes off and rubbed my feet. I walked most of the first 5 miles. Then all of a sudden, like magic, I could feel my feet again. I did run the last 8 miles, walked the aid stations. Had to stop at the porta potty about 4 times which was annoying. I kept my HR between 135 and 150 for most of the race. 21st Century Mom and IronMomJenny passed me sometime in there. I was worried about H, who I had not seen since the start. At mile 8 or so, we passed each other! He was smiling, said something about mechanical failure on the bike but he was running! About mile 11 a woman in my AG passed me. I tried to keep up but alas to no avail. Then at mile 12, just as I was praying no one else would do that-here comes another woman in my AG! Oh I was pissed now! I ran as fast as I could but could not keep up for the life of me. So my run time was pretty bad: 2:51:51. Finished 18th out of 25 in my AG at the end.
Total time: 7:09:16
How do I feel about this race? I tried my very hardest and did my best. I feel proud of my swim and bike and bummed about the run. But I kept telling myself that these other 24 women probably did not do IMCDA 3 weeks ago either! It was my perfect out! One of these days I would like to have a half IM where I can pull off the run at the end in good form. Seems like everytime, I suffer too much on the run and never do well. Something to shoot for! I am pretty happy overall..
I was tired at the end!! Not use to pushing my old heart that hard,especially at the end. I waited about a half hour and cheered H in-he did it! His first Half IM!! He was so happy....
I woke up several times in the night with REALLY sore legs and hips. After several Advil and Tylenol, I finally got some sleep. We are off for the coast of Oregon today..
I didn't take any pictures this race!! Too bad because the river is so nice. I am photo-fatigued from IMCDA! I will be taking pics as we travel. More later..
Addendum: I stand corrected by GeekGirl-IMCDA was 4 weeks ago! Dang-now I have no excuses! :)