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Monday, September 5, 2011

Part Deux

When we last saw our blogging hero she had just survived the swim and was struggling to put on her watch and not fall over while putting on socks and shoes.

The bike ride. Ah the bike ride.

It started off with an uphill. A long steady uphill. The mountain bike I used was borrowed from a friend at work who was kind enough to lend it to me. As her name is Peggy I named the bike Peggy. Except when I say the bike's name it's more like this Peggy:

Coming into T2
As I've gotten used to biking again I grew more knowledgeable about myself on a bike. I have decent quad strength and do OK on a heavy bike. But I don't stand a chance against the road bikes on a hilly road. So I got through that first hill and thought - "whew, at least that's done". There was a downhill where I picked up speed and then a short uphill again. I did not realize the monster of a hill that was just around the bend after another nice downhill. It was steep and I was CRAWLING to the top.

Then when the steepness ended it was still a steady climb to get over an interstate overpass. After that I was wiped out. There weren't any more hills but there were some areas of long inclines and not too many declines. A ton of people passed me during the first 1/2 of the bike (all on road bikes I might add).

I got to the halfway point at 31'ish minutes according to my watch so I knew I was mostly on track for time. I hoped the ride back would be faster since it didn't have as many hills/inclines. I think I did go a bit faster but I also think my legs were worn out too. There was one decent hill right before the end that caused me to curse a little bit. I saw several of my teammates already on the run. I also saw that I would have to be running most of those same curse worthy hills.

About to hit the finish line.
I got back to T2 right around the hour mark and couldn't see my husband anywhere. I ditched the bike and helmet. I grabbed my handheld bottle and visor and left the transition area. Of course every leg muscle had forgotten how to work and my "run" was more like an 80 year old's shuffle. It was blazing hot at this point but the run started off in some shade. I already knew at that point that I wouldn't be doing 11 min miles. My pace felt slower than a 12 mm pace even while I was running. I didn't even get a mile before I took a walking break. Right at one mile we came out into the sun and faced a long uphill (about 1/4 of a mile worth of uphill).

The hill ended at a Jr. High which we were to run around and then circle back. There was a water break there with delightfully cold water. One cup I drank and the other was dumped on myself to cool myself down. I had to walk around most of the Jr. High. I was so exhausted and hot that even 10 seconds of jogging made me feel like death. There was a second water stop at the back of the Jr. High and I drank another cup, saved 1/2 of the 4th cup in my water bottle, and dumped the last 1/2 on my back - which was quite chilly. In retrospect I'm SO glad I dumped the water on myself because I think I would have gotten overheated otherwise.

Waiting for team pics.
I ran the long downhill and mostly ran the shaded part back to the finish line. Most of the team was at the finish line and it was fun to be cheered in. My husband was still nowhere to be found. I stopped my watch and it was at 1:47 something so I knew that run was a epic fail according to my goals. But I was also realistic enough to know that it was hot and hilly so things aren't always as you hope they'll turn out.

I eventually found my husband who was wondering if I was still on the bike since he didn't see me in T2. I dunked my hand towel in the ice water holding the water bottles and downed a bottle of water pretty quickly. I started to eat my power bar as well and then went back to find the team. They had just cheered in the last couple of gals from our group and were talking about getting group pics. We got some nice group pics and then I left before the award ceremony because my husband had already sat around for 4 hours and I knew I wouldn't get any awards for my age group. The results were posted for some of the runners and two gals had already placed one and two in my AG. I didn't expect to be #3.

The group before the run (minus a couple of people).

We drove home and I was beat for the rest of the day. My butt still hurts from the bike seat - my top priority for my real bike is a wider seat. I checked online all day for results and more pics and finally got the results at 11 pm right before I crashed for the night.

I am a bit mad that I was only 2 minutes behind the 3rd place finisher for my AG. I think back to what I could have done a bit quicker. Mostly it was the run portion that I'd like a do-over for.

But to end - since this should be my weekly results post I will leave you with the song that was stuck in my head for most of the run:

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