Yesterday I competed in the Lakes County Triathlon up in Baxter, MN. I’ve wanted to get into triathlons for awhile now and with a busy summer, this was the last one I could get in before the racing season was over! Luckily, my friend Katie was running it also. She had so many good tips for also just getting started in triathlons this year and it was so fun to run it with her! There were about 150ish people running it– small enough to not be overwhelming for a newbie, which i appreciated. The course also went by Emily Rd., so I KNEW it was a good one to start with. 🙂
I hate to say this, but between moving and starting a new job, there was very little preparation. I focused on getting the correct gear and swimming. I bought a wet suit and swam in the lake at my parents, as well as a lake in the area. I’ve always been a pretty strong swimmer, so it was mainly getting used to the wetsuit.
Once we got to the Whipple Lake area about an hour and a half before race time, we set-up our transition area. This meant putting my bike back together (had to fit it in my car) annnd I ended up putting the tire on backwards. WHOOPS. We biked the run course for a warm-up and I could tell something was wrong, so I took it to the bike mechanic on site and he helped me. Word to the wise– if you think something is wrong, ask someone!
One thing they don’t tell you– when you wear a tracker in the race, it is super important to safety pin it so you don’t lose it in the water! Thanks to Katie for that tip!
The race started and we were off!!
Swim – 1/4 mile
Contrary to many triathletes, the swim is my favorite part! The only thing I was worried about was swimming so close to so many people. I had few problems with that though, I just made sure to look straight ahead every few strokes. Once we made the turn and I could see the shore, I was able to cruise on in. Overall, the swim was my best event. After swimming with friends to prepare, it made me thankful that I feel comfortable in deep water!
Bike -14 miles
I’ll be short and to the point– I hated the bike. I just need to get out on the bike more to become more comfortable and build up muscle! Here was my thought process during the bike portion of the race:
Mile 0-4: I hate this and there is no way I can finish this (There were a lot of hills at this point). I remember Katie passing me and asking how I was doing and the response was NOT positive!
Mile 4-6: Still not a fan. However, my mind started to wonder and I forced positive thoughts. I actually started thinking about a cool non-profit I would like to start that provides scholarships or financial help for race fees for those who are interested. Clearly, these are not complete thoughts yet! haha
Mile 6-10: At Mile 8, I was actually with a couple of girls and I shouted we’re over halfway done! We all cheered and it was my first boost of confidence on the bike. I also practiced my lecture for class (FIRST ONE!!!) in my head.
Mile 10-14: These were much easier miles…very flat! I don’t know why, but for some reason I started thinking about my favorite race I’ve ever run. It was in high school, when I ran cross country. I wasn’t that good at it, but it was fun. Every year we ran a race super far away in northeast Iowa. My junior year, my grandparents were able to come because it was near them. I remember how excited I was, because they lived further away from us it was hard for them to travel. They weren’t able to come very far on the course, but I have this hilarious vivid memory of them being at the finish line– my grandpa barking orders for me to get going faster (!!!!) and my grandma cheering sweetly. After the race, there was a giant porch swing by the golf house clubhouse (that’s where the race was) that we sat at and talked until the end of the meet. I haven’t thought about this race for a long, long time, but it made me smile during those last few miles.
In related bike news, after riding on the race, I think my bike may be a little too small for me, but mainly I don’t think my biking muscles are toned! I had gone on a few longer bike rides over the past few weeks, but over the next year this is definitely where I need to devote my time training!
Run – 5K
The hardest part of the run was the first mile. My legs felt like jelly after the bike and it was hard to get a longer stride. I pushed myself to try and stride out towards the end of the first mile and the rest was great. It was a slow, slow jog, but nothing I couldn’t handle.
Afterwards, I chugged a bottle of water and snapchatted my fam and friends to assure them I was still alive!
Katie and I went to Zorbaz, which I had heard so much about. We splurged on some well-deserved dranks…
And had some pizza. It was delicious! All in all, I would definitely say I’m hooked on running triathlons! I loved switching from event to event and cannot wait to keep at it next year!
In completely unrelated news, today is my first day of classes…AS A PROFESSOR! I still cannot believe this is my life. 🙂
Happy Monday, Lovers!