Last Sunday, September 14, I competed in my first Olympic Triathlon!
I give a special thanks to MIT's Triathlon Team, who helped me prep for this race. Racing with me was Sam Nicaise, Mitchell Hsing, Justin Bandoro, and Alex Springer.
Check out the triathlon website! http://triathlon.mit.edu/
In the year before, I only competed in a sprint triathlon in Maryland (400 Swim, 8 Mile Bike, 5k Run). The Atlantic City Triathlon, which was held in conjunction with the AC Seafood Festival, was technically a "shortened" Olympic distance.
Originally, Olympic distances are 1.5 kilometer (.93 mi) swim, 40 kilometer (25 mi) bike, 10 kilometer (6.2 mi) run. However, this race was a one mile swim, a 20 mile bike, and a 5 mile run.
In other words, perfect for a swimmer with little experience in biking or running. Seriously.
Pre-Race: I came in a bit sore from Wednesday's Spinning workout. It was POURING the entire time during packet pick up, which made for a chilly and wet ride to the hotel.
Race Day: Got up at 5:00 AM. I tried to take a mini nap in the span it took my teammates to drive from the hotel to race day. I chose an apple and a bar for breakfast- but it still felt like I ate too much before the race.
6:15 AM: Omgomgomgomgomg I'm going to race! Let's set up my stuff...
6:20 AM: Am I going to get my wetsuit on in time?? Are they going to kick me out of the transition area with my wetsuit half on???? Why is it so cold!!!
6:22 AM: It's still not on!!!!
6:23 AM: Teammate tells me I've been putting the wetsuit on inside out. Oops.
7:00 AM: We've been standing at the shore, waiting for the last parathlete to finish. UMass and BU are here in full force. Uh.....Cosine, Secant, Tangent Sine, 3.14159? Go Beavers?
The weather: A bit chilly, windy, and sunny. I love this weather the most.
The Swim portion. Thank god it was long!!!
- The water was salty, but a nice temperature of about 74 degrees. I lost sight of my teammates the minute I put my head in the water- complete murkiness.
- Not enough buoys.....am I way off course, or is that other person way off course?
- I pass a lot of people. This reminds of Club Swim warm-up at meets. Except for once I'm not the one being run over.
- I had to sight a lot because of the lack of buoys and the murkiness of the water. I swim like one of those 8-year-olds in minis. You know, the ones who haven't learned proper breathing technique yet.
- Finished with a time of about 29 minutes. Yikes....
After finishing 56/477 on the swim....440/477 on the bike. At least it was a chill route :)
- Not too hilly, but a lot of wind. It was very smooth. Perfect!
- Had to watch out for the pothole. A lot of bikers ended up with flat tires.
- Oh hey there's my teammate......
- I count about a couple hundred bikers pass me. Have I passed anyone yet? Nope.
- The biking mostly consists of me trying not to let too many people pass me.
- It's a beautiful route. I almost forgot I was in a race. The wind actually feels nice.
- There's teammates 2 and 3 as they catch up after the swim.
- I need to cycle WAY more.
- This run was shortened from 6 miles to 5. Thank. God.
- My legs are jelly after the bike.
- It takes a few minutes to warm up before I can begin jogging.
- I'm an OK runner. I'm usually racked with shin splints due to improper training, so I don't run too much.
- The board walk was beautiful, especially since we ran along the beach. I recognize the hotel I stayed at last time I was in Atlantic City.
- People are very supportive, offering water and yelling encouragement.
- I didn't let too many people pass me this time :)
- I see my teammates running on the way back, woohoo!
- I ran at a pretty slow pace most of the time, and then sprinted the last 40 yards.
The splits are off, especially for the run because we only did 5 miles, not 6.
After sitting for about 2 minutes at transition, I head to the food tent, and down about 2 bagels, peanut butter, cream cheese, eggs, and bacon. No regrets.
I can't really walk faster than a 3mph pace, so finding my teammates and getting my stuff is pretty slow.
On the car ride back, I sleep for about 3 hours. Thanks for driving guys!!!
In Summary: The most perfect race I could have ever had. The weather was great, teammates supportive, and the distance favored me ( as a swammer who can't really bike or run).