Before last weekend, I had done exactly 1 Triathlon before. Last September during the UPLB leg of the Speedo NAGT.
Since then, I've always wanted to do another one, but ultra marathons and injures got in the way of that.
However, some time ago after watching one to many IronMan Kona videos, my friend Hector and I decided that this is the year we would rekindle our love affair with triathlon by doing the White Rock Triathlon this year.
Which is why I found myself in the start line of the Dean's Cup, a 750m swim-20km bike-5km run, sprint distance triathlon.
My swim started off pretty well, Hector, Neville, and I started in the 4th wave, which luckily had the least amount of participants. By sheer luck, I also found myself near the front of the pack when the race was started, from there I just took off and manage to stay ahead of the pack, thereby avoiding the dreaded "washing machine".
3 loops and 16 minutes later, I got into my pink floral tsinelas and made the long run to the transition area.
A quick change of footwear and a shot of GU and I was on the bike and of to start 8 (Yes, 8!) loops of the UP academic oval.
Being a mountain biker by blood, I knew that the bike portion would be the hardest for me, even though I've been road biking for a few months now, the skinny tires and tiny cogs still make life difficult for me. Though I am slowly gaining confidence in it and my legs seem to be starting to adapt to the different gearing.
but for now, my strategy was to survive the bike portion in 1 piece and try not to lose to much time.
Just for fun... I dropped my water bottle trying to put it back in the cage on my 4th lap, which meant I had no hydration. I never even considered going back for it... mustn't lose time, remember. Besides It was an old bottle and the bite was getting fiddly.
To top it all off, an over-aggressive shift lead to my chain slipping off the crank on my penultimate lap. In the minute or so that it took me to uncleat, step off, place the chain back on, get back on the bike, try to re-cleat, comically slip of the pedals, re-engage and go, Hector managed to over take me.
If I wasn't racing him then... I was now!
We managed to catch up with one another in transition. Hector was on his way out, as I made my way in.
"This is it! You and Me!" I said to him as he left.
In hindsight I shouldn't have said it. Probably gave him fuel to run faster.
Unfortunately, that was the closest I got to him for the rest of the run, the late morning hear making it a bit though for me to run and I was constantly pouring water on myself at every aid station.
Hydrate! It can get pretty hot out there in the Big Island of UP! Hehe (Sorry, Inside Joke)
26 long minutes later I found myself near the finish line, which unfortunately Hector managed to cross 2 minutes ahead of me.
Of course, being the sport that he is, he stayed in the sidelines to cheer me on and as a fellow sporting gesture, I gave him the universal sign for a job well done and I passed him...
Its nice to see competitors respect one another. It's what the spirit of Triathlon is all about.
The very serious Team Second Wind
P.S. Thanks to Tania, Migs, and Eng. Carlos for the pictures. The great thing about having alot of friends, is that you have alot of pictures! Especially if they all have fancy dSLRs and one of them is a professional photographer!
P.S.S. The best thing about the triathlon came after the event. When we had gone home already. We didn't stay around for the brunch and awarding anymore as Neville has some pressing concerns.
We didn't expect to take home anything anyway, as we were sure the level of competition was much higher than we anticipated.
Imagine then, our surprise when our friend T.J. informed us that we had won 8th and 10th place overall and that he would be dropping the medals of at the shop!
Wow! My 1st medal! I haven't had one of this since grade school! Now I'm even more excited to join the next tri!
See the full results here.