With my recent addiction (!) to cycling, and the fact that 20 ppl from my work place (OBS) were planning to do the BRW/Nissan Triathlon, I put my hand up to compete also. (over a month ago now – I’m just catching up on blogging !)
The event is a team-based relay – team of three – each person has to complete a 400m swim, and 10km ride, and 4km run – it didn’t sound too much.
I was fairly OK & confident about my fitness, and cycling – but needed to do some running and swimming.
But – after I did a training run (for the first time in about 20 years) – my legs were SORE – and I had blisters on my feet – and I only ran 3.6km.
AND – I didn’t get into the pool for some laps until 2 weeks before hand – jeez, that is so much tougher than I thought it might be – swimming is HARD work…!
As the date grew closer, I got more nervous – shitting myself actually…!
On the day before the triathlon, they actually cancelled the swim section – thankfully (?) – and replaced with a 1.5 km beach run.
To cut to the punch-line, I’ve now completed a triathalon !!
The day began on the day before, with all competitors dropping off bikes in the compound in Elwood. Apparently, it’s the largest in the Southern Hemisphere – with nearly 5,000 competitors…! We saw a variety of bikes for different riders – some specialised ‘time trial’ bikes – all the way to dual suspension mountain bikes.
The race day began early – I left home about 5am – to get to the venue for 6am – if only to park the car nearby. I met up with the team, and we were checking out the venue – with the first racers to leave at 7am.
We’d all been kitted out with OBS triathalon suits – which were rather tight & revealing – and I looked a little “less” fit than I thought I was – oh well…!
My team mate began in the 12th wave – meaning he left at 7.48am (4 minute gaps) – and we expected he’d do his run, ride, run in about 50 mins.
So – I needed to be ready to go – and waiting in “transition” from about 8.30am.
It was an anxious wait – I wasn’t sure if I needed to go for a toilet stop – or if I was just getting nervous, or if I’d have time to go for a wee, and get back – or just wait around – pacing. I tell ya, that last 15 mins felt like an hour…!
My team mate (Matt) came into transition – and waved to me – and I grabbed the transponder for my ankle – and I was OFF…!
For the next ‘almost’ an hour – this is how it played out :
- Ran down to the beach through the gated lanes
- Down along the sand – a bit twisty on the knees and ankles
- Around the corner on sand – and then back along the boardwalk
- Into the transition area – BEEP !
- Find my bike, flick off my running shoes, and bike shoes ON – helmet then grab bike
- Walk/jog to the bike start area
- Jump on, clip-in – and GO…!
- Push a little harder than normal – it’s only 10 kms !
- High cadence, hands on lower bars
- Spinning about 35 km/h – wind whistling in my ears – this is kinda fun !
- Around the end point, and back into a bit of a headwind
- Dismount point – and jog/walk through the transition area
- Did I push too hard on the bike ?
- Puffing and sweating – drop off the bike, into sneakers and out of transition – BEEP !
- Jog/run through the garden grassy area
- Into a rhythm of running – breathe-out-two-three / breathe-in-two-three
- Thudding on my feet not too bad, but feels slow after the bike
- Starting to hurt a bit, not a big fan of running – just keep plodding
- Sign ahead – 1 km… Oh no, that’s only ‘nearly done 1 km’ !
- Slow to a luke-warm jog – and stop and walk for 10 paces
- C’mon idiot – RUN !
- OK – running now – plod, run, plod, jog – rinse, repeat…
- Uh-oh – I think I have a blister on my feet – both feet ! Noooo…
- Find a pace-person to fall in-line with, follow them along
- Smile, quick hello… Hey, she’s kinda cute – LOL !
- We’re pacing along OK – uh-oh, she’s drawing ahead
- I can’t keep pace/rhythm – damn – stop + walk again
- Need to run – it’s not gonna kill ya, c’mon Wookie !
- OK – think of a song – step/run in tune with the song
- (yep – I went elsewhere for a few mins)
- Ah-ha ! Coming into the spectator area – hear a buddy cheer out
- Push on now – into the gated lanes – and transition area ahead
- I raise my hand to my team mate (Greg) – and hand over the transponder
- Off he goes – I yell out “good luck !”
Yep – I’m finished ! Sweat in my eyes – and now I *DO* need to go to the toilet. Ha ha ! After a quick pitstop – I find my work friends and talk about “how did you go ?!”
Grabbed a Gatorade (or three) – and whipped my shoes off – yep, blisters !!
The rest of the day was chatting with the other team mates, and hanging out, waiting for other competitors – friendly rivalry about times – and then to get our bikes out – and head home.
My end time was 52:52 – just under 53 mins. It sure felt like longer than that !
** NB. The transition to/from bike is within the RIDE section – it didn’t really take 25mins to ride 10km !!
The running part was tough – admittedly, I didn’t do enough training or practice – and there wasn’t a SWIM leg – woulda been worse if there was ! (LOL !)
I think I’ll stick to bike riding.
As a buddy said recently “running is for people that can’t afford a bike !”
It was sure great to be involved and a part of the OBS team – maybe I’ll have to do it again NEXT year – and beat my time (?!)
Me, Greg Richardson & Matt Tan (team #192)
OBS team – that’s me in the middle :
And yes – for some additional LOL’s – there is even a short 5-minute YouTube clip – with a few scenes of our team – pieced together by the ppl at Nissan…
I first make an appearance ~1:40, and jogging to the finish ~2:50.
(do I really look that gangly when I run ?! ha ha !)
So – who wants to go riding ?!?
You can KEEP your running !