As I start out swimming, I sprint for a little bit to get out of the chaos and then find my rhythm. I .was feeling good and focused on the first buoy. Then made the turn to head to the next buoy. Once I headed to that buoy I was looking for the orange buoy and the orange dancing man to site on that was on shore. I saw it and noticed I was also swimming next to people in blue caps. Those were the women from the Olympic race. Wahoo, I had caught some of them on the last section of the swim. I came out of the water and normally have no issues getting my wetsuit unzipped. NOT THE CASE for this race!! LOL. Not sure what was happening, but I was trying to run, unzip, and get it down. Finally, I had the cord to unzip and was able to yank on it. All of this was happening as I was running up a long steep hill to transition.
Entered T1. Stopped, took the wetsuit off, and for some reason thought, "Oh, I'll hang this here on the rack so no one steps on it and it doesn't get my running shoes wet." Yep, leave it to me to have these random thoughts during T1. I put on my jacket (it was COLD), then bike shoes, helmet, and sunglasses in one motion. Grabbed my bike and was off.
While I was on the bike, I was watching my speed and maintaining it. I would have looked at my cadence but alas I could never get the cadence sensor to work the day before. I stayed focused on the bike and was passing people. As I passed I called out, "On your left." I continued on and focused on pedaling and shifting when needed. It was raining a bit and I was happy to have my jacket on. I just kept pushing as hard as I thought I could while saving some for the run. I saw the lead guys coming back and knew I was close to the turn around. Once I turned around I hammered it back to transition. I looked for the dismount line, dismounted and entered into T2 while unzipping my jacket.
Jacket was unzipped. Mounted bike, took off jacket and went to put on shoes...Uhm, I keep deodorizer pillows in them- should REALLY take those out before the race. I shook those silly things out, put shoes on, got the helmet off, grabbed my number belt, and was off for a run.
I was feeling good on the run and kept telling myself to focus on form and running economy. Also, focused on shortening my steps for a rapid cadence. Down a hill, up a hill. FOCUS. Then there was the 1 mi mark. Garmin vibrated at the same time. YAY! About a 1/2 mile to go to turn around. Push!! Up a hill. Lean from ankles, rapid turn-over, count your steps, push. Turn around, I think I am in 7th place overall female, I don't know. Don't think about that! JUST PUSH!! 2 mi, yay, Garmin hit the split again. Ok, self, 1 mi left. Stay fierce and focused and push it home. Up the hill...go, go. There's the last water station, the finish line is around the corner- Pushed it in to finish.
I ended up being the 7th overall female and 2nd in my age group. Great start off to the season. Even better is that I dropped seconds off each mile of the 5k. Happy with my performance and excited for the races to come!
Stay Fierce and Stay Focused!!