Monday, July 5, 2010

The Ladies Leisurely Quad-Town Triathlon

I did a triathlon today. My own made up schedule and route and as I was taking yet another break under a shady tree, I decided that it would be called the Ladies Leisurely Quad-Town Triathlon. And I shall hold it every year, and we shall pretend we are biking in costumes like this:And swimming in those heavy wool things, and running, well, Ladies don't really run all that fast so we shall perhaps alternate between running and walking lest we get the vapors.

It started with a 40 minute swim this morning. Heavenly as always. I think that I have a high tolerance for cold water, because I'm generally the only one swimming. Other people hop in and out giving those little hoots you give when the water is cold. I give a few hoots, but then I settle in. I'm thankful for the swimming lesson in the ocean when I was little - I remember cold morning with the teacher on the shore in a fleece jacket and us in the water, shivering away. But now I can swim and not mind the cold water so it was for the best!

After the swim I biked home (it's less than 2 miles) and had second breakfast - cold polenta with shrimp - changed, sunscreened up and headed back out. I have to say that pre-hydrating and eating more before the ride make a big different.

I biked 6.5 miles to the High School, which is located at the top of 2 hills. I discovered that my bike doesn't have enough gears as I cranked up those hills. The old 10 speed may not last me much longer... I sat for a bit in the shade and recovered my breath and thought about the fact that I then had to do Week 1, Day 1 of Couch to 5k. It's alternating 60 seconds of running with 90 seconds of walking for 20 minutes, with a 5 minute walk warm up & cool down.

I really need to find a better place to train for running than a non-shaded, black asphalt, high school track. Talk about miserable heat. I also need to find a bra that gives me support (which I had) but still allows for full breathing (not so much). Running is pretty much the most unpleasant activity to me. It wasn't pretty, but I made it. Does it get better?

Back to the shade for my cool down walk, and some more bench-lying and plotting my route home. I picked something I figured would be about 10 miles, and take me through the woods and not on any major hills. It was a great route, and in the middle of the woods is a spring where the park has installed faucets so you can fill water bottles. It was the perfect place to re-fill, as I'm finding my hydration pack only gets me through an hour of biking in the hot weather.

I had thankfully chosen a route that was mostly down hill on my way home, which was very welcome.

17 miles total (21 including this morning) through 4 towns and I was back home.

I feel very good. The only part that sucked was the running/walking in the hot sun. I could bike and swim all day long. I'm hoping that the running gets better, and that I can find a shady place to practice.
ETA: I couldn't pass up the evening high tide, so I went back for another swim and discovered that my old-lady sidestroke is quite speedy and aerodynamic. Would this be an inappropriate stroke for a tri? Also, I should practice with my face in the water. I usually wear a hat and sunglasses to protect my face. As one woman remarked, "This is August water!" It was almost too warm. I was hoping to get quite chilled which makes for better sleep. I think I am just chilled enough.

What a heavenly day.

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