obsessing thinking about my upcoming triathlon a lot this week. There is rain in the forecast – specifically, “scattered thunderstorms,” the chance of rain is 40% all weekend, and my weatherman keeps saying unhelpful things like, “rain Sunday”. WHEN on Sunday? If it’s after 11 AM, I don’t care (well, I sort of do – we are having a cookout in the afternoon – plus, I feel bad for all those competing in the Half Ironman!). What if it’s thunderstorming and they have to cancel the race? Or what if it’s pouring rain but the race still goes on, and I have to bike in it (recall that I slipped on some mud and fell four weeks ago). Plus, I have a large cheering section and they deserve to be dry during the 3+ hours it will take me to swim 0.9 miles, bike 25, and run 6.55.
Alas, as much as I’d like to control the weather (that would be one of my three wishes for a genie), I can’t. So instead, I’ll try to shift my focus to things that I can control. Starting with all the stuff that is required to race a triathlon. Since I’m officially a triathlete, I will refer to that stuff as “gear”. Before my first triathlon two summers ago, the aspect of the race that eluded me most was all the gear needed just to complete the event. I’d previously completed three half-marathons, and those are simple (besides the running 13.1 miles, of course): clothes, running shoes, maybe a watch and you’re hitting the pavement. Triathlons, on the other hand, are MUCH more complicated. After all, you’re swimming, then biking, THEN running. And if you’re doing a point-to-point course like I am on Sunday, the start / swim-to-bike transition (T1) and bike-to-run transition (T2) / finish are in two different places, further complicating things.
Despite having three triathlons under my belt, I still find myself creating a new list of gear as I prep for each race. This time, I got smart and created the following excel table outlining everything I need to succeed:
Pretty crazy, huh? That’s a lot of sh*t for one race. For those of you who are visual learners, a lot of sh*t looks like this:
And my bike:
Not exactly a fancy road bike that weighs next-to-nothing, but she’s been good to me. She’s light-ish and comfortable, which is important for my 80-year-old back. (pretty sweet kickstand, huh?). #notaprofessional
As for my race fuel, I’ll be packing three of these dates stuffed with peanut butter and sprinkled with a little sea salt, a tip I got from this post from one of my favorite bloggers. I plan to eat them on the bike. Ignore the “best buy” date. Oops.
So there you have it! A crash-course in triathlon gear. I’ve got some special family members coming to town on Friday and Saturday, so I’m really looking forward to an exciting and busy weekend. Hopefully I can channel this nervous energy into race energy come Sunday morning!
Back with a full report early next week (can’t promise I’m going to be able to do anything more than watch The Good Wife on Sunday evening). Thanks for your support!