Thursday, September 13, 2012
Rev3Tri Cedar Point: The Swim
I had very few thoughts before the race began. I knew that I was going for the Athena win (or the goddess division, as I like to call it.) The week before the race I was hovering right around 152 and after a talk with Sonja we decided I should race Athena (women weighing over 150) because that would drive my competitiveness a bit more. But, really, I wasn't even thinking about that. I just kept thinking, "I am doing this. I am really doing this!!!" Before I knew it, we were all walking into the water to the starting line and then the horn went off and my race began.
I had planned on starting out nice and easy since, well, it is kind of a long day, so I lined up in the middle and walked the first few shallow yards of the swim. I started swimming and all of a sudden I found myself caught up in a group of very large men that were swimming all crazy. It got quite physical for a while and I might have thrown a few good kicks in there to get a couple of those guys off my back. I worked really hard to not let it get to me, and a couple of times I just stopped to let them go. I think the problem was I was actually swimming a bit faster than they were and as I came up behind I was just struggling to get through. Once I got to the first turn I swam a bit wide and things calmed down considerably and I was really able to get into a nice steady rhythm.
Before I knew it I was back at the start buoy to begin the second loop. I waved at the cheering crowd like I was a rock star and then dove back into the water. I made the mistake of taking off my goggles while I was walking and when I started swimming again they filled up with water, so I had to stop to fix them. Once that was fixed, I was good to go, and I really started digging into my stroke a bit more and swimming a little harder. After the first turn I felt totally alone for the rest of the swim. I'm not sure if it was that I was swimming a bit wide or what, but at one point I seriously thought I had made a wrong turn. But then I spotted the swim finish way in the distance and knew I was on track.
After the initial rough start, this swim felt fluid and easy. I never once got tired or had the thoughts that this was a long way. I really enjoyed it and as I got to the end I was looking forward to seeing Kel and getting on the bike. Long before the swim was done, I could hear the crowd screaming and that was really awesome and motivating. When my hand touched bottom, I got up and ran up the beach into transition. I saw Kel right before I went into transition, and I remember him yelling, "Great swim, Kel!!"
Swim time: 1:16:18, 1/6 Athena, 13/92 Women, 72/355 Overall
I grabbed my bag, ran into the tent, and the most awesome volunteer became my brain for the few minutes I was in there. She stripped my wetsuit, sprayed me with sunscreen, helped me put my shoes on as I threw on my jersey (I had decided to race in my jersey so I wouldn't get too much sun and also have more pocket space), and then packed everything else away as I left. (Just a note that there was just one other person in the tent when I was there and it just happened to be one of my Rev3 teammies, Kimberly. It was awesome to have a friend in there!!)
I grabbed my bike and all of a sudden I was off on the longest bike ride of my entire life!!
to be continued...