Heber Springs Triathlon
My husband, sweet as he is, is a fish. I am not. I fear the water. This is a fear he does not, can not understand. He’s been irritated with my fear. I got in the water and tried to swim but within just a couple of minutes I was already in panic mode. Deep panic. I am ashamed of it, looking back on it I know it was crazy but it happened. So. I actually took a life jacket from a rescue boat and finished the swim like a 2 year old. I just assumed I was DQ’d after that so everything past that was just for fun, right?
It all started with an alarm at 4:20 a.m. The race was going to start at 7:30 and it takes at least 1.5 hours to drive there so we rolled in around 6:30 and got set up.
Joe was not having ANY of my pre race jitters. I wanted to put on my big girl panties, really I did. But just the sight of those bouys out there made me want to puke. I’m not sorry I tried, I am a little sorry about failing to overcome.
The bike was great-big rolling hills. One big monster with grade in the teens and it was LONG. Unfortunately, I was in the back of the pack despite passing many people on my way to this hill and the car traffic that had stopped to let the leaders thru was blocking most of the road (no shoulder) and everyone was giving up and hike a biking it. I did too for most of it until the cars cleared out. The bike just felt good! I was happy coming into transition, I had not been passed once but had done a lot of passing. Then it happened…I HAD to pee. I wish now that I hadn’t but I did. There was a woman in my age group that I had passed on the bike but she was leaving transition as I left the porta potty and we ran together the whole way. At the end I asked if she was going to kick it out and she said “want to?” and we did. I slowed to yell back at Joe who was on the side telling me to “GET THIS DONE SO WE CAN GO HOME!” I honestly thought I was DQ’d and it didn’t matter. I wasn’t DQd and I ended up 4th in age group instead of 3rd by 15 seconds. Oh well. I’ll take it. This was about conquering fear. I faced it, the fear won and I don’t know that I’ll ever get in open water again. BUT- I love the bike and run so I’m going to do one on road and one off road duathlon next year, at least 3 sprint adventure races, hopefully one or two long ones and maybe an endurance bike ride or 2 in there along with my favorite:
the alternative tri: bike, paddle and run. NO SWIMMING. 🙂 I did promise that I would support Joe doing any triathlon he wanted as long as I could just volunteer and not do it.
Finish Time 1:49:53
500 yd swim 17:48 (joe 8:52! way to go!)
13.5 mile bike 57:44 (54:48 but he didn’t walk the hill dang it)
3.2 mile run 34:21 (36:23)
No pictures, we forgot the camera.
I can see improvement coming, especially on the running. It will come.