I had slightly high hopes for my second triathlon. I figured it couldn't really be worse than the first one. Sadly, I was incorrect.
This time around I got a wetsuit because the race was at the end of September. I figured this would help with the colder water and Paul said it might help with my anxiety when I first got in the water.
Basically we drove all around Long Island until we found a place that sold wetsuits. This was the first one I tried on and it's teal down the side, aka I love it. It helped get me a little more excited about the whole thing, which was nice since I was mostly just nervous before. As I mentioned recently, I had basically been consumed with work and had very little time to run, bike, or swim. The wetsuit made me feel just that little bit better about the whole thing.
Race morning came and Paul and I drove over to the site. Tons of volunteers were out helping which was nice to see. We got everything set up, put on our wetsuits, and went into the water. I will admit, I first got in the water to swim around and was nervous. Nobody was splashing around me yet, but I still couldn't see and hated that. I relaxed a little and was ready to go. To be honest, I don't remember which wave I was but i was definitely somewhere in the middle. I did my usual, find someone that looks slower than me and line up next to them, routine and started to walk with my group into the water. About a half a second before I got into the water my heart was pounding so intensely I thought I either was about to have a heart attack or was going to pass out, or both. I managed to stick with a pack of women this time around me who were my pace, and randomly yelling words of encouragement to each other. While I still was not thrilled with my lack of seeing in front of me, or the intense amounts of salt I tasted in my moth, I did enjoy this swim more than my first tri. I also was a whole 10 minutes faster on this swim, and again didn't drown! It's the little things in life. :)
Me coming out of the water!
Then it was time for the bike. I knew the course, it was also a lot shorter than the last tri's bike course. About 5 miles shorter. I was excited to get going and was happy with how much faster I was so far this time around.
Transition 1...The only transition for me for this day haha
I went out on the bike and was going along well. It was a nice course and I was moving pretty fast. I figured if I could be faster on this bike ride, I would be so excited going into the run that I may be faster. Things were all going well until around mile 5.
This was the towns first time doing this triathlon, and many people driving around in the town apparently felt uninformed and displeased with the amount of roads closed off for it. The bike course wasn't completely closed to cars and I could hear a car coming up behind me. I knew they weren't happy about the race and also knew that some times cars like to see just how close they can get to the bikers without running them over as a fun game. I decided moving over further to the side of the road would be a good idea. I moved over and didn't notice the pothole that had been in front of me. My back tire hit it, causing my tire to pop, and me to lose my balance. Yes, you are correct. This resulted in me falling off the bike, which hit the chain off the bike. The whole thing was a disaster. Some very nice bikers in the race stopped to make sure I was fine but didn't have anything for me to change my tire. I also was not aware of how to change my back tire. I know, I was very unprepared for this whole thing. A cop went by me at one point and told me "Listen, I'll be honest, you have over 5 miles left to go. You can walk it and then run 3 miles, or you can put your bike on my car and I'll drive you to the finish." I liked his logic, was totally over the race, and did not want to walk 5 miles to then run 3. So yes I quit. You can all start your lectures about how quitting is the worst thing to do. I know.
The other down side to this was I had to wait for the last biker to finish before the cop could leave that area and drive me back up. Unfortunately, Paul's parents were also there, and were waiting at the finish for me along with Paul (who had finished already). They then began to get nervous seeing the race crew bringing in the cones, signaling all bikers were in and out on the run. I'm pretty sure they thought I was dead. If you're keeping count, this is now two triathlons we're people thought I may have died during the race. The cop drove me to almost the race area and then I walked my bike a couple hundred feet past the finish and went and met up with everyone.
Basically, the race was miserable. I was not happy, not prepared, and not a finisher. That was about the worst it could get. Paul on the other hand, did a great job and had a new PR. As usual, he kicked my ass. So that is the story of my second triathlon (also probably my last one for a little while), and my last race of the fall. My big lesson was to be more prepared before I decide to just up and do a triathlon with very little training, and also get everything I need to change a bike tire!
On an embarrassing side note..a week later I got an email from the race company that basically said "Dear Athlete, We noticed that you did not finish the event and want to make sure that you're okay. Please email us and let us know." FAIL!