First, a disclaimer: The entry for my parent 50th anniversary is coming. I've had some challenges with the photos.
August 8th was the 6th annual Northern Columbia Tri. It was the second year in a row that I competed. I knew that I was grossly unprepared for the run leg, but the race is for such a great cause, I couldn't resist entering. All proceeds from this race go to research for a cure for Cystic Fibrosis. Every one who works on this event volunteers 100% of their time.
I got to the lake at about 7:30, with a race start time of 8AM. I was in the first wave of swimmers- so all men and women from 35 to 44. That's a huge group of fast swimmers.The lake is pretty, and there aren't a lot of weeds until the end. Good news: I didn't get kicked in the head this year, and my time was a whopping 9 seconds faster than in 2009!
I knew what to expect in the transition this year. And I've learned how much a slow transition can affect your overall time. In this race, there is not transition times. Both swim to bike and bike to run transitions are included in the overall bike time.
This year I had a few successes on the bike. First, I took 8 minutes off my bike time from last year! Second, last year there were 3 hills that I had to walk a portion of. This year, I didn't walk any portion of the bike leg. I climbed all three hills. The only problem I had on the bike was that on the first major hill, my foot came out of my pedal as I was switching gears (about a 100 yards from the top). It threw me off the bike, and I lost about 3 minutes catching my breath and checking my foot that got twisted in the fall.
The run: YUCK! This is the part of this race that always makes me question my sanity. Most sprint Tri's end with a 3.1 mile run. Not this one! Oh no! That would be much to easy! The NCT finishes with a hilly 4.5 mile run! I knew that I was not prepared to run this whole race. I knew I'd need to take a few walk breaks. Really, the first 3 miles of this run are uphill. Part of it is a 7% grade. Because of my foot injuries from March, I have done minimal hill work in training. So, I told myself I'd keep this race fun, and if the run stopped being fun, I' walk.
Ummm- throwing up during a run definitely qualifies as not fun. Throwing up twice is even worse. So, I walked about 1.5 miles of the 4.5 mile run. That's less than half, but more than I wanted to walk. The other disappointing piece of this run, is that I'm pretty sure it's longer than the race lists it at. Both "Mapmyrun" and mapquest show it as 4.8 miles. Trust me, that extra .3 mile makes a significant difference after a hilly 20 mile bike ride. Overall, my run was almost 3 minutes slower than last year.
Overall- I improved my time by 5 minutes! Not bad for still having foot pain that is flaring up pretty regularly.
And today, every bone, muscle, tendon and piece of cartilage from my hips down is aching and demanding ibuprofen! I'd say it qualifies as a great race.
Next up: The 2nd Annual DACC Sprint on September 11th. As an added bonus, my 14 year old niece, Emma has voiced a desire to do the race with me! I'm excited to help her train.
Stay tuned for our adventures.