The swim went really well. I had a great start and found fast feet by the first turn. I stayed on the same feet for almost the entire race. It was hard to sight so far to the turnaround buoys so I did rely on the swimmer in front of me and we seemed to hold a decent line. Coming back under the bridge I heard a whistle I couldn’t mistake and on a breath rolled onto my side and offered a wave to my gear mule for the day, my biggest supporter, my rock, my husband Marty. He saw me and I saw him…so nice to connect in such a long race. In the last quarter of the swim I did feel myself tiring and was falling off her feet. I told myself I had two choices. Slow down and swim alone or speed up and catch her feet again and probably end up exerting the same effort with the draft than I would alone. I sped up. At the last buoy things were getting very congested with us catching up to the men’s heat. Around the corner I lost her with swimmers everywhere and the sun in our eyes. I went way wide and swam a bit farther than I needed to but managed to get around quite a few men without getting kicked. My swim time was 31:31, slower than I thought I would be but not too bad.
T1 was fast and I was out and on my bike in 1:59. Once on the bike I reminded myself that until I hit the top of grand valley that my job was to ride like a tourist (unlike my mantra in an oly distance race which is to tell myself this is no vacation….). My chain fell off somewhere going up grand valley, tried to get it on without getting off but couldn’t manage so pulled over and fixed it. On the bike I was passed my 4 females (including Sheila Croft and Tanya Saloman-no surprises there) and passed 2 myself. I kept my hr in a target that I thought would be good over the 94km distance, 10 beats below what I hold in an oly distance race. I did enjoy this ride, it felt good from start to finish. Marty surprised me in 2 spots on the bike it was great to see him out there, ringing the cow bells for me! There were some other familiar faces out there as well, some TTL’ers, Tri-It staff (Madi and Rose) and my fav preggo triathlete gave me a high five coming up Cochrane hill (thanks Richelle). I got lots of cheers from people stuck in traffic on the 22 including these 2 girls in a convertible that I saw 3 times on the bike course and gave me the hugest cheers….thanks ladies! I took in all the fuel I had planned to take in and by the time I came off the bike my stomach was settled and ready to tackle the run. Bike time was 2:44:14, definitely what I thought I would be, BUT, with winds out of the west I should have been faster. I won’t over analyze the bike here, but I will say that I now know I can push harder on the bike over this distance and definitely hold a higher heart rate. So for next time….no more riding like a tourist!
|Reaching out for a high 5 from the boys!|
I was 7th female overall and 2nd place in my age group.
In retrospect, I think I could have been alot faster on the bike but that is water under the bridge. It was my first half ironman and I had no idea how my body would react to racing this distance. I will definitely be tackling this race distance again in 2013....Just like in olympic distance racing I want to see what I am capable of, I want to challenge myself!!
|Me, Coach Angie, and Leslie-Anne (2nd in her AG too!)|