I think I must have been a cat in a former life. Ok, so I don't actually believe in reincarnation, but really my aquatic skills are quite feline in nature. It seems that no matter how much I try, no matter how many laps I swim, no matter how much I channel my inner Michael Phelps, I just plain stink at swimming!! Tri for the Cure was yesterday and in case you didn't pick up on it, I am not too happy with the way the swim portion went. But overall it was a great race. Here is a breakdown of Tri for the Cure 2011!
|All set up and ready to go!|
Swim (Goal time: under 20): Finally around 7:45 I made my way down to all the other blue caps in my wave and began the nerve racking process of waiting for the swim start. I began my internal pep talk, "Ok, Katie you can do this. You have been practicing! You can can swim front crawl, you can sight, you can open water swim. You have this in the bag! This year you are putting your head in the water. No breast stroke! Great form!" I should not become a motivational speaker because as the bullhorn sounded I panicked. The swim start was chaos. The water was choppy, arms and legs were flying in all directions, and the sun was directly in my eyes! I couldn't see, I couldn't swim, I couldn't breath. All of my hard work and what did I do???? I swam breast stroke with my head out of the water just praying I could hold it together for 750 meters.
Disappointment washed over me and I just wanted to swim back to shore, grab my stuff, and go. Not only was I going to be slower, I was also going to be exhausted from this. Good form is important for speed but it is even more important for efficiency. When you swim you should look like this -- not this /. Looking like this / means you are dragging your body through the water instead of gliding on top of it. When I finally reached the shore I was so relieved because I knew I could not swim another stroke. I ran to the finish mat tired but glad that I survived. Surprisingly, I was still 3 minutes faster than last year and (barely) made my goal time for the swim. (Actual time: 19:31, Rank: 1104/2411)
T1: I have already mentioned that in a race of this size parking is a problem. Another problem is the massive size of the transition area. Transition is a part of your total race time so you want a spot that is close to the start and finish lines of all three events. The elite group is assigned a spot right next to all three starts. I was assigned a spot in Kansas. Needless to say, my transition times were slow (almost 8 and a half minutes!!).
Bike (Goal time under 40 min): I was a rock star on my bike. Yeah, that's right, I am going to brag a bit. Please feel free to skip this if you don't want to read about how awesome I am (just kidding). I might suck at swimming, I might be average at running, but I can go all Lance Armstrong on my bike. Ok, I am not that good but cycling is definitely my thing. I blame it on my mannish thigh muscles. I only got totally passed once (played leap frog a few times with 3 ladies and ultimately passed them). Although, I must mention that the elite and competitive groups had long since finished the race by the time I started. Overall, I was very thrilled with my cycling portion and it almost made up for the heinous swim. (Actual time: 36:08 Rank: 115/2411)
T2: See complaints from T1
|This is the evil time chip|
Overall (Goal: Under 1:30:00): It is hard for me to not be disappointed with this race because of the swim. But I need to look past that and realize that overall I did a good job. Swimming isn't my thing, but that doesn't mean I am going to hang up the goggles. I will keep working on it until I can describe my swim as "good" instead of "avoided death." (Actual Time: 1:33:18 Rank 350/2411)
I do love Tri for the Cure! This is where my love for (or obsession with) triathlons and racing in general was born. I love the atmosphere, the organization, and you can not help but be inspired when that group of cancer survivors starts their swim (there was even an 84 year old survivor who raced!). It is a great race for a great cause and I was so happy to be a part of it again this year.
P.S. I missed you Audrey!