A quick update from the Yam City Triathlon. I decided after Rocketchix that I NEEDED to do one more tri this year, and a post on Claim Your Journey (Louisiana’s awesome running-focused blog) convinced me it needed to be Yam City in Opelousas. And so I signed up for the 150 m swim, 14 mile bike and 2 mile run.
Date: Sunday, August 26, 2012
Place: Opelousas, LA
Total time: 1:17:13.7
Josh, the best athletic supporter a girl could ask for, was game for waking up at 4:15 a.m. to make the 60 mile drive. A note on pre-planning. I packed my bag the night before, froze my water bottle and loaded up my bike in the car so I wouldn’t have to worry about it in the morning. Josh reminded me how the night before my first Rocketchix race in 2011 we were rushing to get my kickstand off. He was proud of how far I’ve come.
After an easy drive to Opelousas (a little north of Lafayette), we arrived onsite a few minutes before 6:00 for the 7:30 start. Although I STILL haven’t spent as much time this summer focusing on triathlon as I’d like to, I still felt comfortable going into the race and was confident I could perform well.
I picked up my race packet, saw that the shirt was as awesome as anticipated (swimming, biking and running sweet potatoes!), and set up my transition.
Because I was so early, I had my pick of the bike rack and, of course, chose the first spot, closest to the aisle, and set up my transition. I also remembered to check out the run and bike entrances, and then returned to my set up to turn my bike around to face the right direction. 🙂
I wandered around for a bit and stretched while Josh napped in the car. At 7:00, we wandered over the pool. I still have yet to do an open water swim tri, although it is a 2013 goal. Our race numbers indicated our order in the pool, and at #49, I was the 4th or 5th woman into the pool. (Out of 207 competitors, just 71 were women – that’s about 34%.)
The swim was great. They were putting swimmers in the water at 10 second intervals and I swam the entire thing alone. I was never passed and did not pass anyone. I came out of the water (tiny pool, seven lanes and we swam them all) in about 2:52 according to my watch, right on my 3:00 estimated time. My official swim time is 3:25.4 because the timing mat was at the far end of the alleyway we ran through back to transition. I was 7th in the swim for the women.
Transition 1 did not go as well as I anticipated, mostly because I found two bookbags in my transition area. One was even on top of my gear! SO PISSED! Seriously, isn’t it rule one of triathlon that you don’t mess with someone’s transition area? I threw the bag that was on top my gear to the outside (taking care that I didn’t throw it too forcefully; I didn’t want to block the aisle), threw on my sunglasses, helmet, socks and shoes. I’m proud that this year I haven’t sat down in transition at all. I grabbed my bike and headed to the bike exit, jogging around a guy walking down the middle. I decided to use my anger to propel me to a good start. Total time 1:46.9
The bike was also great. The first and final couple of miles were on a bit of rough road, but it was mostly a smooth, newly re-blacktopped road. I came out of the water in good time, but almost immediately started getting passed left and right by guys on some sweet tri bikes (I drool!). I just focused on moving forward, drinking my water and enjoying the ride. Thankfully, the highest number I saw pass me was #100, and he was trucking it! I actually managed to pass two teenage boys, although one had just dropped his chain, so maybe that doesn’t count?
My watch, which I didn’t remember to restart until about 500 yards into the bike ride told me I was on a Rocketchix pace, where I surprised the heck out of myself by averaging 17 mph on the bike. At Yam City Tri, I actually averaged 17.2! That is really awesome for this slow trier on a 30+ year old Raleigh road bike with no clips or fancy shoes. Total time 48:57.7; rank 22 of the women.
Transition 2 was quick, but I did have to stop and move the second bookbag, since I couldn’t get my bike back into the rack because of it. I traded my helmet for my visor and grabbed my race belt and was on my way. I remembered to grab my Gu this time and think it made a big difference in my run. Total time: 0:51.6.
My favorite thing about the run was definitely having the Boy Scouts handing out water at the start completely soak me! It was awesome to feel so fabulously cool as I headed out. I heard Josh cracking up as it happened and that definitely gave me incentive to get it done!
The two mile run was an out and back with a bit of loop in the middle, so we probably only repeated about 1.5 miles of the course. It was mostly shady and I ended up walking a bit at first and then using a counting technique to keep me moving. I would count to 100 twice as I ran and then walk while I counted to 30. It worked really well. My total run time was 22:11.9, or 11:06 a mile. It would have been a few seconds faster, but the final 50 yards were actually over really rutted grass and I found myself watching my steps into the finish line.
Overall, my time was 1:17:13.7. I came in 21st overall for the women and THIRD in my age group! Woot! Of course, I told Josh that we didn’t have to stay for the awards ceremony because I figured what were the chances I would win anything? Apparently pretty good, so lesson learned. In fact, my swim time was first in my age group!
After the race, Josh and I headed down the interstate to Prejean’s for some good cajun food. I loved the dark roux chicken and sausage gumbo I had (and I normally don’t like a dark roux) and we split some fried eggplant with shrimp on top. Not bad; the gumbo was better.
We drove home over the Atchafalaya Basin, always a gorgeous thing to see. There wasn’t too much time to enjoy the race because Hurricane Isaac was headed for Louisiana. Sunday evening, my boss called and activated me for disaster duty (the state agency I work for handles mass sheltering and disaster food stamps). It was two weeks of 12+ hour days and lots of crazy time. So pleased to be getting back to normal now, even enjoying a touch of fall-like weather. I’ll finally get to join the Varsity running group I’m planning to train with for my December 9th half marathon and I’m so excited to get in a good run in decent temperatures tonight!
Oh, and bonus content. My favorite tweet from Josh of the day. What’s not to love? 🙂