|Greatest Support Team|
Back at the hotel, Gillian watched with great interest as I set up and checked all my gear. I felt like a pro might while being interviewed by Triathlete Magazine, like my opinions and rituals were actually fascinating to someone. She's my new favorite spectator. Erin eventually got to the hotel around 8:30 pm, and took Gilly out for some normal person fun while I went to sleep.
|Anne attempts to keep me warm before the race start|
I did run to warm up before the start (fully bundled) and I kept my sweatshirt, socks and gloves on until I walked down the dock for my swim wave. (Special thank you to Anne and David for picking up after me when I hurriedly stripped 1 minute before my wave) All of the women in the race were in the second swim wave, which made it pretty easy to figure out where one stood overall throughout the race. The start was supposed to be in-water, but many of the women chose to sit on the edge of the dock until the horn went off. I decided to get in because I wanted to get the brain-freeze feeling over with before attempting to swim.
|Mid- lake grass removal|
Unfortunately, although my full results were up on the board after the race, the online results don't list all of my splits. Just my run and overall time. Everyone elses results are fully split. Apparently I am special...My spectators tell me I was the 3rd of 4th woman out of the water. The woman on the results with the fourth fastest swim split, not counting mine, swam a 36:11, so I think that means my time was faster than that.
|Awesome sign #1|
|Numb hands make dressing extremely difficult|
|Gilly wins the "best dressed" award, and holds another excellent sign|
I wanted to pull on gloves too but there was no way to get my fingers in in their current state, so I scratched it. I immediately regretted not having them. Within minutes my hands were in excruciating pain, and I was barely able to shift. The course was beautiful but very tough and hilly. All of the "flats" were false and there were many long, slow climbs, and even a few steep ones. I couldn't stand on the pedals because my feet were so numb I didn't trust them.
I don't know how my hands came back, but eventually they did. Not before I dropped my chain though, fumbling to shift. I had to get off to fix it, halfway up a hill. I think I saw three women on the bike course and one was on a relay team. One caught me right after I dropped my chain.
|Erin's camera skills have improved significantly over the season|
|Bumbling out of T2|
|Still feelin' good out there|
|I swear this was supposed to be a smile...|
|Finish line relief|
|On the podium with the second place finisher|
My legs were sore almost instantly after the finish and I went to the post-race massage tent after a slice of pizza and plenty of fluids. During the awards ceremony it became clear I was not the only one feeling the race almost instantaneously. Watching people struggle to get up onto the (high) podium blocks was amusing. I used a two step approach by first climbing up onto third... And when it was all over I got to eat apple cider doughnuts, courtesy of my wonderful athletic support team.
|Posing with the third place finisher, Lauren, whom I know from my old bike shop|
I was planning on running some races this fall, but now I think my legs might need a break after this unexplained injury popped up. We shall see. I may still get in a 5 or 10k but the half or full marathon plan is on hold for now.
|David and Anne both ran the half marathon as relay team members (Dave, Me, Anne and Erin)|