2018 Tyhee Lake Triathlon!

This was my second time taking part in the Tyhee Lake Triathlon, and my second triathlon ever. Last year I completed the sprint distance and this year I came to tackle the Olympic distance. That day last year, I decided this was the best endurance event I’d ever experienced in Northern BC, and this year that decision was totally solidified!

The Tyhee Lake provincial park is AWESOME. Some may not think that camping is ideal for race weekend accommodations, but the campsite is beautiful, well-maintained, and there are showers and some flush toilets as well as standard outhouses. It was so nice to be staying AT the event.

On Saturday morning I woke up at six and saw that Erin was already awake. Immediate excitement!!! We ate breakfast right away (I had granola, a Happy Planet chocolate protein smoothie and a banana with peanut butter) and then started to get organized and go to the bathroom 500 times. Check-in/bike check was all going down from 7:45-8:30 and then the Olympic distance event started at 9:30, so we had lots of time.

Triathlon morning, I’ve come to learn, has way more stuff than running race morning! I gathered:

  • goggles, cap, earplugs
  • wetsuit
  • sunglasses, SpiBelt with a Clifbar and an Endurance Tap gel
  • water bottle with Skratch Labs powder
  • helmet
  • bike (duh)
  • runners, socks, hat, BodyGlide

On my body I was already wearing my new Smashfest Queen triathlon shorts (LOVE), sports bra and Garmin, which would go under the wetsuit for the swim and then stay on me for both the bike and run.

Erin and I went down to the event area (giant parking lot) with just our bikes to check-in, get our race numbers and swag-bags and then line up for the mandatory bike check. I got a fresh new bright yellow swim cap since I’d be wearing a full wetsuit and the number written on my arms and legs wouldn’t be visible until after the first transition. I love free shit ahahaha.

After our bikes were given the once-over we found a spot on the racks in the transition area to hang them up. Then we went back to our site to get the rest of the gear and set up our towels beneath our bikes with everything needed after the swim. A helpful tip I remembered from last time was to put my sunglasses and SpiBelt inside my helmet so forgetting them couldn’t happen.

At 9:15, I got into the lake to swim around and try to get the initial nerves out. I put my face in and blew bubbles slowly, swam a short distance out and back and just hung out in the water for a bit. I really didn’t want to have the swimming anxiety today!

the Piranhas

Ali, the amazing race director, did the countdown on the mic and we were off. I didn’t feel nervous and was prepared to start slow and get into it. No freaking out was happening and I wasn’t hyperventilating or anything, but I couldn’t seem to swim more than a few strokes without needing to breast stroke and try to slow down my breath and heart. Maybe it was just adrenaline. Anyways, I wasn’t worried and just kept going forward, and once I reached the second buoy (500m) I felt almost normal. At the completion of the 750m triangle, we had to stand and go around a cone before continuing for the second lap. Here, I knew I was good to go.

The second 750m went by in the blink of an eye and it was fun swimming hard and confidently in the final 250m!! 1500m33:09

Wearing silicone earplugs seemed to really help (thanks for the tip, Rheannon) because normally when I get out from an open water swim I am SO dizzy and nauseated. I got up the grassy hill to the transition area without issues and saw my friends from Telkwa cheering along the way! Wetsuit removal went smoothly and into my bag I chucked my cap, goggles and earplugs. Quickly dried my feet, threw on my socks, shoes, sunnies and Spibelt, fasted the helmet and un-racked my bike. Wooooo!

I don’t do a ton of cycling, that’s for sure and forty kilometers felt kinda long. It was very tiring, but it was so enjoyable! The bike course is gorgeous. It’s a rolling road and you can see the lake, cows and beautiful countryside. I ate a Clifbar immediately and then stuck with my bottle of Scratch for the rest of the ride for fuel and hydration. Quite a few people passed me on the ride, but I didn’t care; I was already stoked for the run! Sorry to the girl who I told my vagina hurt πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Coming back to the transition area upon completion of the bike segment is great because it’s downhill. 40k1:35:18

After I re-racked my bike and removed my helmet and belt, I grabbed an Endurance Tap, threw on my hat and got back out there for my favourite part! I don’t have the clip-in cycling shoes so didn’t have to do a shoe change. I’ll get those eventually..

My legs felt better than last year, that’s for sure! After spilling half my Endurance Tap down one leg, I told myself to just get the first kilometer done before making any judgements about how I felt. The first split is ~25m gain (the big hill that was so lovely at the end of the bike), which is brutal coming out of the transition!! I saw Corey on this hill and we agreed it was a cruel joke ahaha. After that, I felt okay and kept chugging forward. I took water at the first two stations and again at the third where there were sponges as well. I stopped for a sec to properly drink a cup of water and get a sponge. This was somewhere in kilometer four and I had to tell myself to suck it up and do this.

I wasted some time in kilometer four…

Erin and Shannon both passed in the opposite direction before I reached the 5k turnaround and it was so uplifting to see my friends!!! I started to feel really good and even though it was hot and sunny, I realized I did not give a F.

I passed a couple of people, including some burly men and it was pumping me up. At the turnaround, I got another sponge and got in the fuckin zone.

I passed more people in the second half of the run and was feeling like a million dollars, running on gumby legs or what Shannon calls meat sticks lololol. My legs were moving fast underneath me and my arms were swinging. I felt great!!! I saw Jessie and Matt too: all Piranhas accounted for!

I caught up to Shannon and her flowing hair and we crossed the finish line together, under three hours!!! What an amazing feeling!!!! My time for the run was actually the fastest women’s run time!! 10k (though my watch shows it a bit short..) : 50:48

reunited with Erin, who got 2nd place in our category and 3rd overall for women!

also reunited with Corey!

Cheryl got 3rd place in her category for the Sprint distance!!

Pippa and Ellen came for an impromptu duathlon! Ellen WON!

fking love this woman

This event is amazing! It’s so well-organized with great communication from the director. There is so much support on the course, especially for the swim and the run. The location is perfect and so is the vibe, it’s relaxed and not hard-core and intimidating. The swag bags are unreal! Afterwards, there is a delicious barbecue, tons of prizes and a beautiful lakefront to hang out at with friends/family while listening to the awards!

I’m so grateful that my friend Breeann encouraged me to take part in my first triathlon here at Tyhee lake just one year ago. I now LOVE triathlon! Seriously, I love it as much as I love running I think! Ironman 2021 (when I’m done school and can train), mark my words!!

I highly encourage you to consider participating in this event next year if you live in the area or will be nearby. There are various distances, including the “try-a-tri” which includes a 300m swim, 10k bike and 3k run.

This was one of my favourite days of my life and I’m thirty-three years old! I think it’s safe to say that the Tyhee Lake Triathlon is FANTASTIC!!! Thank you, Ali and all the volunteers who make this happen!

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PUMP up the JAMmie! – Week 13/16

TWENTY DAYS out. This last week was big and awesome! One thing I very specifically took note of this week is the ability of my body to recover. Lifelong Endurance has guided me to becoming so much stronger, and I am really REALLY looking forward to running 42.2k on July 29th! I haven’t run a marathon in over four months. It’s (almost) time. LOL.

Monday, July 2ndeasy day

10k nice and easy. Didn’t really feel like going, ended up being awesome. Weird πŸ˜‰

Tuesday, July 3rdhard day

  • 3k easy
  • 8 x [800m ~4:30/km, 2:00 rest]
  • 3k easy (I only did 2)

Average pace for the eight 800s was 4:25/km. I took the rests very easy, walking for at least a minute of the 2:00 each time. I wanted these 800s to be solid because the last time I was at the track I was sick as a dog and it was very discouraging. Awesome workout!!

Later that day, 7k easy before dinner

Wednesday, July 4theasy day

Back on the road! I headed to Telkwa to visit my friends for a few days and then go camping with the tri crew on Friday. This is one of my favourite places on the planet.

10k easy was on the schedule. My friends live at the very top of basically a 10k hill. The final 2.5k to their house is the steepest! Every time I go I envision myself being able to run back up slowly but consistently and it never happens. I did intervals of 200m jog, 100m walk for the final 2.5k of this run.

Thursday, July 5threst day!

Zero exercising today! My quad was sore from the track on Tuesday and then the pounding downhill on Wednesday, so I was glad to take it easy! Plus, 38km was on schedule for the following day!

Friday, July 6thlong run day

Thirty-eight kilometers!!! This was the kind of run that didn’t feel AMAZING but also wasn’t anything to complain about. I wasn’t able to pick up the pace in the last 8k, which was the plan “if feeling good” but I was consistent and my fueling was awesome.

After food, coffee, nap and more visiting, I headed down to the Tyhee Lake campsite.

Saturday, July 7theasy day

6.5k easy along the triathlon run course! I considered skipping this run…we were on our feet all day long at the farmers’ market and exploring around downtown Smithers, and then Erin, Corey and myself went for a mini-swim to test the temperature of the lake. Adding on a run seemed like so much work, but I went for it. The beginning felt terrible! My quad felt like it had a rock hard knot in it on the left, and my left ankle was hurting too. But things improved and as always I was very happy to have gotten it done and stuck to my schedule.

Then it was dinner time with the tri crewΒ (now called the Piranhas) and very early to bed!! Wooooo!!!!

Sunday, July 8thhard day! Tyhee Lake Triathlon!

Okay. Triathlon is the BEST. You know how I am obsessed with marathons? I might be MORE obsessed with triathlon. I’ll write a full review of this race because it’s so great people need to know more about it, but in summary…

Swim: despite having gotten into the water pre-race and practicing some breathing and warming up, I couldn’t calm the F down for the first 500m. It was frustrating. I’ve worked so hard on my swim! At the second buoy, I started to pull myself together over the next 250m. The second loop was AWESOME and went by in the blink of an eye.

Bike: great! I am not an experienced cyclist and didn’t train nearly enough. This was hard, but bike riding is soooo fun! I worked as hard as I could and enjoyed myself. Forty kilometers felt long!

Run: started amazing, faded quite a bit and had some negative thoughts, told them to STFU, and then smashed the second half. I passed a lot of people! AND it was hot out and I didn’t even notice. Stoked on this run overall!

my girl Erin here got second place!

Such an amazing way to cap off the week! A super fun and exciting full-body workout that ended with running on very tired legs – excellent practice for the marathon! Such a positive racing experience with my friends.

SUMMARY

WEEKLY MILEAGE:Β  95km

INJURIES/PRE-HAB?Β  quad was concerning me but it seems to have loosened up and isn’t irritated anymore!

SLEEP?Β  fine

NUTRITION BRAGS?Β Β Um Skratch Labs powder has now served me well three times during hard and/or long workouts. My fueling on the 38k and during the tri was really good!

CURRENTLY READING:Β  probably going to listen to How Bad Do You Want It on repeat until the marathon now..

CONFIDENCE BOOSTER(S):Β Β the triathlon! Specifically the last 5km! Also putting 38k on these legs just two days before.

NEXT RACE:Β Β Jack & Jill’s Downhill Marathon. Holy shit.

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PUMP up the JAMmie! – Week 10/16

I can’t believe Jack & Jill’s Marathon is in six weeks. Week ten has been great. Lots of variety, especially with the triathlon creeping up in just three weeks! The rest day on Monday was so valuable, and the long run workout this morning was exactly what Lifelong Endurance wanted it to be for me – a confidence builder! The perfect way to close out the week, especially since my long run last Sunday was no bueno.

Monday, June 11threcovery day!

I recovered so hard today! Spent the entire morning bingeing on the S Town podcastΒ (thanks for the recommendation, Karmen) and cleaning my house.

Then I went for a stability session with Kristen, which was perfect. It was gentle but challenging and about as much as I could handle today.

Then I got some groceries and basically cooked and baked all day. Here we have the sweet potato cookies, superhero muffins, and meatballs, all from Run Fast, Eat Slow.

Tuesday, June 12thhard day

  • 3k easy
  • 8k ~5:00/km
  • 3k easy

That felt fantastic and very manageable, which is great considering GMP is 5:00/km! So happy that I love running again after last Sunday..

Next up, my last swimming lesson + 650m. Huge thank-you to Anne-Marie, who has me feeling like I more or less know what I am doing and will swim confidently at the Tyhee Lake Tri!

Before dinner (the meatballs, omg) 7k cool-down run. Felt so fucking good! I love rain running! And maybe I was excited for dinner? The effort felt relaxed, but pace was quicker than usual easy pace!

Wednesday, June 13theasy day

I did a lot of stuff today, but all things were kept easy!

1750m swim, which was awesome and I felt smooth and confident. Right after, 10k of dirt road and trail (tired AF) – this run felt like shit. Happens. I still had fun playing with my GoPro!

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Later, an unplanned 27.5k ride with a bike gang of girls! I think I’m really getting the hang of the gears on my road bike.

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Thursday, June 14theasy day

2000m swim – awesome.

10k at easy effort, but it happened to be one of those magical runs where it felt easy but I was running fast!

Finally, a glider session with Kristen! I asked if we could leave the legs alone because of the workout tomorrow.Β  We did all core, holy crap.

Friday, June 15thhard day

  • 3k easy
  • 8 x 1k @ 4:46-4:30/km, 2:00 rests between
  • 3k easy

I was so excited for this workout! I woke up with a sore throat but felt okay. My core was SO sore from the workout with Kristen, but the good kind of sore. Once I got going thought I realized how sore my arms and shoulders were, too.

It went pretty okay, but in the third rep I almost threw in the towel. I was so fking frustrated with the excessive traffic and wind, on top of how tired I was feeling. Looking at my Garmin, I’d already run over 6k. I asked myself “why the hell would I bail on this now? Just do your best and stop being obsessed with it being perfect.” And so, I kept going, and it went fairly well! on number seven, it was so windy that I could barely hit pace while going DOWN a huge hill and that was also infuriating haha. I got this new woman app on my phone and yesterday it gave me a notification that said “PMS is coming” HAHAHAHAΒ I wonder if this had anything to do with my attitude? I finished the last interval, slightly under pace, and was almost back at my vehicle, so I just ran to my chocolate milk and called it a day. Over it! 13.25km total.

Saturday, June 16theasy day

Easy 7k in Terrace

Lake swim!!! I picked out a ~150m stretch between two buoys and swam lengths. The swimming lessons have done WONDERS.

Sunday, June 17thlong run workout!

  • 5k easy
  • 8k of 90 sec @~4:50/km, 90 sec @~5:20/km
  • 5k easy
  • 6k progression ~5:05 down to 4:49/km
  • 4k cool down

Omg. The cold that started Friday morning really got me. I almost cried when my alarm went off because I didn’t even sleep, just rolled around mouth-breathing all night. That being said, I was still looking forward to this workout after listening to The Champion’s Mind on the whole drive home from Terrace the night before. I gave myself permission to take the two easy 5ks really easy, and vowed to tackle the faster parts piece by piece and try not to think ahead.

I can barely believe I made this happen, but so proud that I did. During the second easy 5k, I felt that the next progressive set was impossible, but a lot can happen in five recovery kilometers. I went back to reminding myself to just run one kilometer at a time and to NOT obsess about it being perfect. It fuckin worked. SO HAPPY.

After food, water, bath and nap, Jessie and Erin picked me up for our swimming practice!

yes!!!! Lakelse was really good practice, but I could see the bottom because I was so close to the shore. This was a better simulation for the race. Dark sea monster water, way longer stretches, and no boats or sea-doos to be nervous about.

So yeah! Six weeks out from the marathon! As Coach Andrew would say, about four weeks left to “get the hay in the barn” and then we taper. A bunch of my taper time will be on Haida Gwaii so there will be some sick photos coming at you!

SUMMARY

WEEKLY MILEAGE:Β  90 km

INJURIES/PRE-HAB?Β  good to go

SLEEP?Β  good! lots of naps

NUTRITION?Β  got back on track this week! Also, long-run fueling went well.

CURRENTLY READING:

just finished The Champion’s Mind – Jim Afremow. I listened to this on audio. The narrator was okay…the content was what I like. If you are goal-obsessed, you’ll like it.

now it’s time to re-visit How Bad Do You Want It – Matt Fitzgerald (one of my faves)

CONFIDENCE BOOSTER(S):Β  definitely today’s long workout.

NEXT RACE:Β  Scotiabank Vancouver Half & 5k – next Sunday!

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a First-Timer’s Triathlon recap! and how it relates to CONFIDENCE

Endurance sports are so addicting. To push the body, brain and spirit and see what, as a trio, they’re capable of is so friggin awesome. If you know me, you know I’m pretty in love with challenging myself physically, but I also try to get out of my comfort zone often and test myself mentally and emotionally. This wasn’t always the case, but after working with Suzanne Fetting off and on for years, plus a lot of other growth in the last five-ish years, I have a very different perspective on trying new things that scare the crap out of me in one way or another! BUT, that doesn’t mean that this kind of stuff comes easy. I’ve come a long way in the confidence department, but I’m still human and trying brand new things makes me feel vulnerable and nervous! So here’s how the whole process went down, and if you decide to do a triathlon or any remotely related thing that’s new to you, I hope this will help you!

The Tyhee Lake Triathlon is an event I’ve heard about for ages, long before I became a runner, and I always thought of triathlon as something that other, cool, hardcore people did. Not me! Last year, my good friend Breeann participated and I was so inspired by her hard work and courage to accept such a cool challenge that I saw as extremely intimidating. In March when she suggested I come join her at it this summer, I didn’t think twice and just said yes immediately; I once knew how to swim quite well, I can ride a bike and I’ve been running consistently now for years. Then I proceded to ignore the fact that I had agreed to do a triathlon and I pushed it to the back of my mind for a couple months because it was too uncomfortable to think about. LOL.

Once spring marathoning wrapped up it dawned on me that I might want to get my ass in gear. I swam at the pool quite a few times (a challenge in itself) and was happy to learn that I still knew how, but I was VERY suprised at how extremely difficult it was from what I remembered from my childhood and adolescent swimming lessons.

I went to spin class two to three times a week for about a month and a half, borrowed a road bike from a friend, and then a couple weeks ago did a sort of practice-tri with a bunch of girls. We biked 20km out to a lake, swam approximately 800m (the opposite of fast, and with rests..but I felt I could survive the 750m distance) and then ran a 5km out-and-back before biking back home.

AWESOME. I knew I could do it! I did one more practice swim in my wetsuit* the weekend before in a different lake, and that was it. Triathlon was going down! AHHHHHH.

*The reason I bought a wetsuit (after much research) instead of borrow is because I want to do more swimming at the cabin whenever I can, and I knew for a fact I wouldn’t invest in it and only end up using it once. Don’t think you need to buy a wetsuit! It wasn’t even mandatory in Tyhee Lake because the water temperature was warm enough. If you are interested, however, I got the BlueSeventy Sprint full suit from a Canadian site, triboutique.ca

The week before the race, I started to really question myself. Sure, I can swim, bike and run well enough, but I didn’t have a clue about the logistics. Triathlon seemed way too hardcore for me. Why do we decide we aren’t good enough for something we’ve never even tried? What do I do with all the gear? What are the rules?? What do I wear under the wetsuit??? I am going to screw up and look dumb for sure. Breeann, who my sister and I were going to visit and stay with, was no longer participating in the team category like she had planned, and I thought, maybe I’ll just do a tri another day and spend the whole weekend with them. That was totally me trying to make an excuse because I was scared! I had also subconsciously hoped that my sister would bail on our weekend away so that I could use that as an excuse not to go. Didn’t happen, thankfully!

I read a bunch of articles online about what to expect in your first tri, packing checklists, and basic overviews of the transitions and felt a little more prepared but my nerves kept growing. My inner critic was taunting me. This is a bad idea. You don’t know what you’re doing. You didn’t prepare enough. The transitions are too foreign and scary. You’re a runner, stick to running. You’ll probably get a flat tire. Are you trying to be cool in your new wetsuit, poser? Now it was July 4th and the triathlon was on the 9th. I went online and registered and said I’m f*ckin doing this!

Friday afternoon my sister and I hit the road to Telkwa (tied for favourite place on planet Earth, with Mudge Island) and the whole time I babbled about how nervous I was because I’d never done a triathlon before. We stopped in Terrace and my new best friend at the bike shop showed me how to change a flat tire and sold me a little kit for under my bike seat. All I had to do was ask. Back on the road! More freaking out about getting a flat. My sister is a good counsellor! The bottom line, of course, was basically shut up and go have fun.

On Saturday morning I went for the most gorgeous and peaceful 20km dirtroad run and it boosted my confidence and left me feeling a little better about the situation.

Yes, I know a long training run doesn’t usually precede an endurance event, but I registered for this with goals of doing my best, learning and getting out of my comfort zone, not to go out and try to win it.

My sister picked me up as I reached the pavement at Highway 16, and we headed to the Bulkley Valley Farmers’ Market where we ran into a friend from Rupert who I knew was going to be there. She told me that two other girls from home had decided to come and do the triathlon at the last minute! I now had accumulated FIVE friends there. This made me feel really excited and slightly less nervous! Oh, but of course a sly comment from the inner critic, You are probably the only one who’s never done this before. (Untrue.)

You, reading this, might be thinking, wow this chick is sure being dramatic! If you’re the type of person who was born with amazing self-confidence and doesn’t bat an eye at the thought of trying something brand new, that’s awesome, but I know I’m not the only person who feels highly susceptible to things like failure, embarassment, being flustered or looking like a total ass when attempting something for the first time. So yeah. Onwards!

Sunday morning came and I went through my basic checklist.

  • sandals and warm clothes for before/after
  • my longer 5” tight running/biking shorts & crop top (for under wetsuit)
  • wetsuit, goggles, cap, towel
  • runners, socks (I refused to use the clip-in biking shoes this time around..)
  • bike, helmet, water bottle, spare tube & kit, sunglasses
  • Spibelt to store a couple gels and a cliff bar
  • hat for my run

We left early and got to the provincial campsite around 7:30.Β  The welcome email that I received sometime overnight told me I could check in and sign a waiver at 7:45, and that bike check began at 8 o’clock. I didn’t know what the hell bike check was and allowed that to make me feel awkward, but then once I was there and checked in (leaving with a badass Jiffy marker’d 51 on each arm and lower leg, hehe) I realized bike check was just a line up to have a bike guy give your ride a once-over and send you over to put it on a rack anywhere you wanted. I looked around to find out what to do next (who knew) and saw that some people had already organized their gear right beneath their bikes, so I set up my towel, runners, socks and running hat on the ground and put my sunglasses and fuel belt inside my helmet.

united with Rupert chicks!

Once that was taken care of, I felt one hundred times better. Now all I had to do was swim, bike and run, and not rush in between, because I knew that would screw me up. Each time I went to the washroom I met someone who was also doing their first ever triathlon! I wasn’t alone! I took my time and got into my wetsuit, braided my hair, put my goggles around my neck and took my cap with me to the grassy beach area to jump around a little and warm up.

My sis took my sandals and that was all that needed to happen before start time!

The swim began and right away my heart and breath went berserk. I breast stroked for a bit and did little stretches of front crawl, but it was very slow going. I felt pannicked like I was going to get seriously left behind (not that that would even matter!) but I just tried to relax.Β  In a worst case scenario, there were people in little rowboats as well as SUPs who were there to help and even offer a rest! I didn’t require that though. No kicks in the head, no choking on water, I just kept at it. By the first buoy (250m) I felt very happy that I was 1/3 done. Not going to lie, most of the swim was a struggle for me, but by the 3/3 250m stretch I felt a lot better and everytime I commited to my front crawl for as long as I could manage, I noticed that I caught up to other swimmers and even passed a couple! Woohoo! I swam until my hands brushed the bottom and felt so happy and proud that I completed step one!

The path from the shore to the transition area was a very short but steep hill and running more than a few steps didn’t seem to be happening so I focused on unzipping my suit and pulling my arms out as I made my way up the hill to the bikes, also taking off my cap and goggles.

Getting my feet out of the ankle holes wasn’t as easy but I got the thing off and partially dried my feet, put my socks and shoes on and attached my Spibelt around my waist. I’m glad I put the belt and my sunglasses inside the helmet or I would have forgotten them, I know it! As I was getting organized I realized some of my friends were around me doing the same things. Woo! Sunglasses on, helmet fastened, bike off the cross bar it was hanging on, and then I was wheeling my bike to the very clearly marked mount-line to hop on and start part two! Weeeeooo!

Once I was riding I started to really calm down. Biking seems much more second-nature to me than open water swimming, so I just enjoyed going fast on Karen’s super cool road bike that I borrowed and worked as hard as I could on each uphill, downhill and flat. I noticed that I was very much in the moment which isn’t always the case for me in a race setting. This made me really happy and I continued along as fast as I could with my quads feeling sore from my run the previous day but a huge smile on my face. I am not an experienced cyclist by any means and I’ve never been in a bike race, so I learned a lot on this one ride alone! The course was rolling hills and I loved figuring out the best gear to be in and what level of effort to throw down! Love learning shit! The turn-around point was definitely where I would have had a mishap if one were going to happen, but I went slow around the sign and then got right back at it for the 10km back to the lake. Ripping down the hill back into the transition area in the campsite was fun except the speed bumps really forced me to slow down. Didn’t want to launch off any jumps baahaha.

Shannon and I at T2

I reached the mount/dismount line and wheeled my bike back to it’s spot and hung it up, took off my helmet (which apparently is the one thing newbs forget to do and start running with it still on) and threw on my hat. It was time to run 5km! Running! My thing!!!

Lead. Legs. Holy. Shit. HAHAHA I have never felt my body like that before. It felt like I had no feet! My energy level and breathing felt normal, but my legs were like Gumby. I kept going, observing this interesting quality of my body that I’d never experienced before, and it got easier. A muscle in my right lower leg that I still haven’t identified was SO tight it was just about crossing the line between discomfort and pain, but I was careful as I ran. Even thought it was only 5km, it was SO challenging and the two water stations (and cowbell) were very much appreciated. Aside from one moment near the turnaround where my leg was really bothering me, this run was so amazing! I didn’t have a clue what kind of pace I was running since I started my watch on “other” at the start of the swim and left it alone for the duration of the race, and it was on a screen that wasn’t making sense. I absolutely loved that my only job was to do my best. I wasn’t comparing this run’s pace to any other run.

01:40:10 finish for me, whatever that means! lol

Finishing the race was amazing!! The support at this race is really awesome, and the number of spectators was impressive for a northern BC endurance event! I felt strong til the end, and when I crossed the finish I felt so accomplished. This was the most fun thing ever! Like, I love marathons and all running events a lot, but this was a whole nother level of cool. I wish I could put into words the feelings that come over a person at a time like this. Pride, excitement, a little disorientation, sometimes a bit of overwhelm and teary eyes. INCREDIBLE!!! Immediately in love and wanting to do another in the future!

Imagine I had’ve given in to feelings of insecurity, uncertainty and fear of the unknown. Imagine I bailed on the tri just because my original partner in crime wasn’t able to take part and I didn’t want to be “alone.” Or if my sister for some reason wasn’t able to go away that weekend and I decided I wasn’t going to go either. Or if I were still a piss-tank and a weekend away only involved getting drunk. NO. I don’t want to imagine because that was one of my favourite days of my whole life! Not only did I get to take part in what I now consider one of the coolest events I’ve ever taken part in, I got to do it with five amazing friends and I made a couple new friends, too! I thought it was going to be terrifying, but like most things, it’s was only scary until I got there!

I will re-visit this experience the next time I’m psyching myself about something just because it’s unfamiliar to me. I will remember that my body is extremely capable, even though I remind myself almost daily of this, but hey that’s just the way it goes for some of us.

Do not let fear stop you from having the best day or best experience. Remember that people like to help, so ask questions and give yourself a break. Observe others. Remember that you will rarely be the only person doing something for the first time. And lastly, remember that extremely cheesy but true quote that I don’t really want to include here but I’m going to anyway..

comfort

@jammiekomadina