Thursday, June 24, 2010


I have always wanted to do a triathlon.  A friend told me about this Tri For Fun series in Plesanton and I decided to give it a shot.  Going into it though I found myself feeling so anxious and a bit nervous.  I hate feeling unprepared and even less, dealing with the unknown.  I had zero expectations or goals for this one.  I just wanted to get my feet wet, and get a feel for how it all works.  So for those of you who might be contemplating an event such as this, follow along and just TRI to imagine what it was like for me.
TRI to imagine rows of bikes hanging by their seats, with little piles underneath them.  Painstakingly organized by the order in which the competitors will need them in.  Socks, riding cleats, helmets, snacks, running shoes, i pods, knee braces visors, towels.
Next imagine a strong wind blowing and swarms of first timers lining the "beach" listening to a vetran and training coach giving a detailed explination on how it all will work.
Now TRI to imagine everyone stripping down into skintight nothingness...(okay maybe don't try to imagine it, but there will be no photo's of this stage of the event) and then walking barefoot through goose poo over to the starting point at the lake.  They are let into the water in various waves determined by gender and age, and the let loose to swim a quarter of a mile.  Swimming is a very loose term for what really happens here though.  If you dare to swim and TRI a real stroke you will likely end up with a fist full of leg, and a mouthfull of goose poop soup or warm lake water, again you can call it whatever you want, the reality is still the same.  Pure grossness.  We splashed through the water around two big ball shaped bouys and headed back onto shore with aching arms.

TRI to remember to take off your swim cap and goggles as you race back to your bike where your towel is waiting, in perfect order.  Feet are quickly dried and shoved into socks and shoes, helmets are buckled onto wet heads, and for some shirts with your racing number are thown on.  Everyone jumps onto their bikes as soon as they have left the transition area and begin to fight the wind on the 11 mile course.  People of all shapes and sizes most of them with wet bums in the air climbing hills and peddling as fast as their legs will let them.

After rounding the last turn and heading back into the park, bikes are placed back onto the racks and the next perfectly laid out pile is put to use.  Ipods, knee braces, and running shoes are on and its time for a run.  TRI to imagine your legs are really there underneath the rest of your body and do your best to make them move.  They may just feel like a bunch of jello, but no worries, they'll be your regular old legs again, just give them about a quarter of a mile!  Imagine running on a trail that makes 3 figure 8's and is three miles long.  It's a bit nuts trying to figure out just where to go and whats over the next hill, but if you follow the crowd, eventually the destination and the finish are reached.
TRI to remember the intensity will only last 1 hour and 20 minutes, that you can make some new friends along the way, and when it's all said and done, there is a McDonalds just around the corner that is still selling sausage and egg McMuffins!   See it wasn't so bad, in fact it was pretty darn fun!  There are two more this summer one in July and one in August, come TRI it out!

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