Tri for a Cure 2014

Ladies and Gentlemen, I have sucessfully completed the Tri for a Cure 2014.

First of all, it is so amazing to have such a great event right in my backyard. Even with race traffic, it only took me 9 minutes to get to get there. This is great for a race that starts early in the morning.

It was a strangely beautiful morning with a light fog hanging over the water shrouding the islands and boats in Casco Bay. In a few places the pink sun shone through.



I spent nearly all of my time before the start in line for the bathroom. At an all women's race they should know they really need a lot of portapotties!



The opening ceremony was as moving as always. Each year I am just as touched because there are so many incredible stories about the ways that cancer has touched so many lives. This year they highlighted an elderly pair of identical twins who both have lung cancer, but were determined to volunteer at a water stop. They are the embodiment of what it means to never give up.

Then the survivor waves was off. You can just see the strength and determination in these women. It is so inspiring.

My swim on the other hand, was not inspiring. Granted, I didn't go into it with the best mindset. In fact, I was outright dreading it. The water was a whopping 54 degrees and my feet started aching in the 2 minutes I stood waiting for my wave to start. I was right smack in the middle of the pack when we started so there was no clean water. I just couldn't find my rhythm. As soon as I put my face in the water, the cold just took my breath away and I started to panic. After a minute or so of this, I gave up and flipped over to my back. After backstroking for a bit and trying to take some deep breaths, I tried flipping back over. Unfortunately that was right when a huge wake from a ferry came in and I got in the face with a wave. I considered quitting at that point. My heart was racing, I couldn't breathe, and I wasn't even to the first buoy! Instead I turned back onto my back and just focused on doing 10 strokes at a time. I was actually moving at a decent pace, but I couldn't see where I was going and the unfamiliar stroke was quickly tiring my arms and legs. It was only right before the final buoy that I was finally able to keep my face in the water and free-style. My time of 12:22 was almost 2 minutes slower than last year!

Luckily, when I came out of the water I saw my Mom there cheering for me. We hadn't connected before the race, so knowing someone was there rooting for me was a great pick me up. I also used the wetsuit strippers for the first time this year. I was feeling so unsteady, it was nice to have someone else do all the work. I found my shoes in the mini-transition and headed up the hill to get my bike. At T1 I decided to run into the bathroom as well. I knew it would eat up some time, but I had to go!

I have never been so glad to get on my bike. After being passed by so many in the swim, I was thrilled to pass a good 30 people in the first 10 minutes on the bike. I felt strong and went hard and never really had to let up. On the swim I was thinking "I am never doing this again," but on the bike I was thinking, "I don't want this to end, I can't wait to do this again." My only mishap when was I passed my fiance, I was so busy waving to him that I stopped paying attention and almost hit a cone and fell over. I love the last mile of the bike- there were so many spectators I felt like I was in the Tour de France. My time was 50:19 for a pace of 17.5 mph.

Then all that was left was the run. I grabbed my race belt and was off. I purposely didn't wear my watch and just ran as fast as I could. The miles seemed long and that same feeling of not being able to breathe was back in my lungs. But at least running I knew I wouldn't drown! I did my best to say something nice to everyone I passed and who passed me since the camaraderie is one of my favorite parts of this race. Finally I was near the finish and I pushed a little harder, but I held back a little because could feel my stomach getting really upset. I finished the run in 23:56 for 7:59 pace!



The post race food, provided by Whole Foods, was awesome! They gave us each a bag and they had all kinds of stuff to fill it with- hummus packs, cheese sticks, different kinds of bars, coconut water, even lotion and supplement samples! There was no live music or free beer this year, plus I was freezing, so once I found my Mom, we headed home.



I can already feel some sore muscles from the backstroke, but I am generally feeling pretty good. I am a little disappointed with my swim time, but proud that I didn't give up, and finished the swim in any way I could. I am very happy with my bike and run times. Plus, I love this year's race shirts!


Not a bad day at the races as they say.



Comments

  1. Congrats!!! Way to make it through the swim! That sounds so tough! Do you do duathlons? Since you said you were saying "never again" with the swim, but like the bike part ;) Super speedy run!

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