Tuesday, May 21, 2013

I Am a Duathlete!

For the past few years I have been calling myself a Triathlete!
I even become a USA Triathlon Coach!
 This weekend I changed my game.
I became a Duathlete.
I signed Robert and I up for the Encinitas Triathlon because it was a fabulous deal. When I signed us up it was a two-fer. So for both of us it was $75.
I looked it up and later it was $120 a person.
Anyway, we were in Carlsbad in April for the Carlsbad 5000 and I knew we had the Encinitas Sprint Triathlon coming up and we loved the funky Surf Motel we were staying out, so we booked the Ocean View Suite for the weekend.

This time we brought my son, Darin, and his friend, Dylan.
While Robert and I expo'd, ran and biked, they surfed and swam and ate.

We met up for the eatings.
Man, those boys can eat a lot...

We checked in late Friday and I could hear the surf, but I couldn't see it. But the breeze was nice and I had a great night's sleep.
I woke up early on Saturday and everyone was sleeping so I walked by myself to the coffee shop/hamburger joint/sandwich shop/bakery down the street and got myself a BIG coffee and a bowl of fruit with a pastry.
Okay, so it was a pastry with fruit on it. Yummy!!!
After my people got up, Darin and Dylan took their surfboards to the beach and Robert and I took off in the car for the expo.
At first I was thinking we should just ride our bikes, but then I thought it might be hard to ride back with all the schwag they were going to give us.
As it was, the streets were shut down for the 5k run and we had to park FAR FAR FAR away from the expo.
They didn't give us too many goodies, but I did come away lucky. One booth was having a $25 shoe sale and I felt like Cinderella because the sizes fit me. The salesperson was happy, too. She kept saying how she had been waiting for someone with my size foot to come along and buy the shoes.
Photo: My feet were just the right size for the $25 sale at the expo.
I bought 3 pairs...good thing I got them on Saturday and carried them all the way back to the car because she didn't have her booth on Sunday. I looked. I had my credit card in hand to buy more shoes. Guess I saved some money.
The expo was good. The weather was fabulous and the beach scenery was the best.
The waves looked big, but Robert and I talked about it. He is a great ocean swimmer and I am a newbie ocean swimmer. He assured me that once we got past the breakwater, it would be easy swimming to the buoy and back. Really, the waves were no bigger than ones I had boogied boarded in.
My mistake was to stop in the chiropractor adjustment tent. The doc there was an 5-time Ironman and he told me the next day's waves were going to be BIG with rip currents. He gave me 15 minutes worth of swim advice and then said he felt a lot of tension in my neck and shoulder area.
After talking to him about race day's surf ANYONE would have tension in their neck and shoulders.
After the expo we stopped in the local bike store.
Lesley Patterson use to work here.
They were really nice and helpful.
They had GREAT customer service. Too bad they are so far away because I would switch bike shops if they were closer.
Later that afternoon Robert and I went on a stress-reducing bike ride.
Of course, we rode on Pacific Coast Highway and all I could look at was the waves and how they appeared to be getting bigger and bigger and BIGGER.
We turned around and headed back when everyone started leaving the beach and the traffic was getting a bit crazy. Some people didn't want to share the road, even when the road was a "sharrows".
Back at our hotel, I relaxed on our patio and tried to visualize myself diving under gigantic waves and coming out the other side right by the last buoy.
I had a nice dinner with my guys and went to bed early.
The alarm went off and out the door we went. I couldn't see the surf because it was still dark. We had to park FAR FAR FAR away again, but this time we could ride our bikes to the event. But it's hard riding with a HUGE transition bag on your back when I haven't had a cup of coffee.
Robert and I had signed up as VIPs and were suppose to have assigned spots in transition. I did. He didn't.
They moved us to a special spot.
 Hector loved his spot.
Robert and I quickly set up our transition area and grabbed our wetsuits and made our way out of transition. They were closing down transition at 6:30 a.m. even though our wave wasn't until 7:48 a.m. They let me move my 7:40 a.m. wave back to his 7:48 a.m. wave so we could swim together.
We were in our wetsuits and down by the water when the first wave went off. It was the elites and they easily made it through the pounding surf.
Then the normal people waves started going and it was a different story.
Lots of people never made it.
Several were brought back in by lifeguards.
Every few minutes the announcer would tell where the rip current was....He said stuff like - swim to the right so you get pulled to the left so you can swim to the right.
I watched about 8 waves go off and I knew it wasn't going to happen for me.

Lifeguards riding on seadoos brought a lot of people back to shore.
The breakwater went all the way to the last buoy. It was just pounding wave after pounding wave.
I told Robert I just was not properly trained for these surf conditions. When I had signed up the triathlon was suppose to be at a different place, you know like at a kiddie beach, but they had to move it because of construction on the parking lot.
Even when the tri moved to this surfer beach, I thought I would still give it a try.
But my inner instincts were yelling, "SAVE YOURSELF."
They announced that anyone not making it through the swim, or those who just wanted to, could change to the duathlon.
I was at the timing desk so fast to get my name changed to the duathlon list that you would have thought I was racing.
One girl at the timing desk was crying.
She had been pummeled in the surf.
She was switching to the duathlon.
As we watched the line of soaked triathletes lining up to become duathletes grew.
Lifeguards later said they helped 70 people out of the water.
Glad I wasn't one of them.
I am a duathlete....run/bike/run!!!
My wetsuit is packed away dry!
The first run was on the beach in the sand.
The bike was pretty flat with a small hill in the middle.
The second run was up a dirt hill, then on the road.
I was just so grateful that I was racing without having to battle the surf. The race was over before I knew it.
We waited a little while for results, then gave up.
Final results are still not posted.
I'll let you know how I did when I find out.
Today I am just going to put on my bike shoes and ride some hills because I love to Train-n-Tri!


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