On Sunday, I returned for a fifth time to one of the best local races we have–a women’s sprint distance triathlon. (If you are local and a woman, it’s a must race–even if just for the finish food alone!)
Race: Georgia Peach Women’s Triathlon
Location: Dallas Landing, Acworth, Georgia
When: Sunday, August 28, 2016 7:30am
Distance: Sprint: 400 yard swim, 13 mile bike, and 3.1 mile run
Wearing: The Be Brave, Be Thankful Kit from Swim Bike Sell
This race, put on by Georgia Multisports and the most awesome Jim Rainey, is a wonderful, women’s only, beginner-friendly race.
I have found, time and time again, that this race is full of supportive, like-minded women who, regardless of experience and skill, generally have one goal in mind: finish the race happy and healthy.
This is a great race to see your local tri friends, those who you haven’t seen in a long while, and new friends who you have only met in your computer.
I was in the first swim wave, which consisted of the 30-34, and 35-39 ladies. I am not sure that I have ever been first wave before in any race, so that was pretty cool.
I’m not 1000% sure what in the world I was doing on the swim. I managed to swallow a ton of water and have a semi-freak out for about 10 seconds–but then I moved on. I almost swam into a kayak, when I heard one of the volunteers say, “Noooooo.” Okay. Got it. Well, let’s just say I made it out of the water, and it was okay. #NotMyBestWork #AlsoNotMyWorst 🙂
I have admittedly been far less than diligent in my swim workouts, and while it didn’t “show” per se, I could definitely feel that I haven’t done my job in the pool. So that’s something to remember. (Ummmm, train.)
One awesome thing about this race are the “swim angels” —volunteers in white caps who are out in the water to help swimmers who are new, or nervous. They are different from the kayaks and rescue crew, of course, but a wonderful extra addition to this race.
I had a fun T1. In that I couldn’t get my shoes on. It felt like forever, but I was still in and out of T1 in 48 seconds.
But not before this absolute gem of a picture was snagged.
I can’t even. I was getting aero leaving transition. Thanks, Holly, for the laugh. #BestRacePhotoEva ^^^
And off I went. I love my bike!
While compared to some of the Georgia bike course monsters, this bike course a mild one–however, that does not mean that the course is easy, by any stretch. Flat and fast, it is not, but reasonable and fun—yes.
The thirteen mile course still has 600 feet of climbing, so as a new triathlete, make sure that you don’t underestimate the hills.
If you plan for this race, make sure that you throw in some bike hills and practice riding those in advance of race day. Still, it’s a lovely course–enjoy it. I always do.
I was happy with my bike – and it was the fastest I have raced this course – with a 19.4 MPH (race results average) and 19.9 (Garmin average—not sure what’s up with the discrepancy on this one. Also, not sure that I could have pushed any harder. Still chasing the elusive 20 MPH in any race!! #NextTime).
I had a little trouble getting my sweat and lake-soaked feet out of my shoes this time. And almost busted my butt in transition. I generally opt to go sock-less for the bike portion, but I do put on socks for the run. Even three miles will give me some blisters without socks, so I find it not worth the 8 seconds I save–at least not at this point in my racing. 🙂
Grabbed the belt and visor, and out of T2 in 55 seconds…
And headed out for my so-called weakest link…
We all joke with the race director, Jim, who likes to call this course “flat.” No, no no. With over 330 feet of elevation gain on the run, it’s definitely a challenging little 5k.
Within the first 100 yards, there’s a nice climb out of the parking lot. I use this hill as a non-scientific gauge for my run fitness, since I have memory of doing this run over 8 times over the past handful of years –in this race, and it’s also the same run course as Allatoona Tri.
As I headed up the hill, I felt good. Great, actually.
I settled in for a mentally positive and refreshing run. I am a runner, afterall. And that’s what I told myself.
And it worked.
I remained positive, walked only 3 steps around Mile 2 to guzzle some Gatorade (as the decorative guys at Aid Station 2 screamed, “Don’t walk!!!”…. I wasn’t!! But without the reminder maybe I would have…so Rich, feel free to always holler at me not to walk!!)…and I kept going.
The volunteers: 🙂
One step at a time, run run run and sometimes prance prance prance.
This wasn’t a “fast” run on the scale of slow to fast. Speed is speed, but speed is also subjective.
It was a fast solid effort for me since returning from my stress fracture and coming off a bike where I pushed very hard. The run was consistent as all hell, and executed by the book.
Mile 1: 10:26 pace
Mile 2: 10:26 pace
Mile 3: 10:11 pace – the negative split miracle
As I rounded the corner onto small town Main Street, the Expert and Swim Bike Kiddos were there.
I reached out for my daughter (who said she wanted to run the chute with me), and she hesitated and shook her head.
I said, “Come on, sweet girl! Let’s go!”
She reached out for my hand, and off we went.
(Don’t worry. I didn’t leave out my son. He didn’t want to do it, and plus, it was a women’s only race. #NoBoysAllowed)
A wonderful day.
So here’s the truth.
This was probably the best race I have ever had, if we are dissecting it.
If you count all the things that went right, and the outcome of doing what I planned, and have been working on. The goal of remaining positive. Remembering what matters. Smiling. And having my family there.
It was the perfect day.
And yeah, yeah yeah… I also had fun.
And of course, a podium never hurts either.
Snagged a sprint triathlon PR, a podium in Athena category (translated to a 7th AG), and overall 46th out of 221, with a finish time of 1:21:43.
Thanks, GA Multisports, for putting on another fantastic event.
And especially thanks to the Expert and my kiddos for making the event extra special, and making me push hard. The Expert, BTW, still holds the family sprint triathlon 5k PR with 28 minutes and something, which is mind-boggling to me, after pushing over 20 MPH on the bike.
But then again, running a sub-12 minute mile pace, once upon a time? That was mind-boggling too.
And yet, I do it now—in every single run workout. It’s all proof that in time, things can change if you just keep moving forward, stay positive (for the most part), and count all the blessings. Here’s to next year… and cracking that 5k wide open. 🙂
|Swim Time||Swim Pace||T1||Bike Time||Bike Pace||T2||Run Time||Run Pace||Total|
See You Next Year!