Escape from the Rock

Good Morning Race Fans,

This past Sunday I completed my first triathalon (Seattle “Escape From the Rock Triathalon: http://www.envirosports.com/events/event.php?eventid=1928) The race day was a sunny and gorgeous start at 8am and water temperature was a lovely 72 degrees. I was fortunate to have a cheering section of Lauren and Elias and Joan (who all woke up at 6 am to get me to the start in time), and Linda and Mitchell who cheered and took the pictures enclosed below.

Compared to Danskin, Escape from the rock felt like a private family event. With only 500-600 entrants it was smaller and you felt like you could actually get some breathing room. Pre-race nerves had me talking with Anthony LaMarca about leaving in an earlier wave just “to get it over with”, but Anthony convinced me to hang out for the last wave and just enjoy the passing of people.  The start was in the water and it was certainly a unique experience in getting bashed around while trying to “relax in your stroke.”  There were only a few moments of “I wish I could get more oxygen while doing this”, but all in all the swim was a quiet affair as I took a _very_ outside lane and just took the course as quickly as possible. (Of men swimming I was 146 out of 219 in my swim time).  I left the water ready to get out of the suit and get to the biking, and happy that the hard part was behind me.

The transition had a 250 yard run to get from the beach to the bikes. I got there to see a lot of people had already left, because being a slower swimmer  and leaving last left me a little behind the curve. That said, the transition to the bike was smooth, I ate my little packet of caffeinated goo and went flying up the hill to play catch up. The only distraction on the bike ride was that my GPS watch got into a bad state and ended up losing the data for the event. (*sigh* more lost data to mourn) The personal achievement on the bike was that I was able to average 19 MPH the length of the express lanes on the I-90 bridge and ended up catching a lot of people (37 out of 219 of men biking)

The last transition to the run was a quick 50 second turnaround and off to the run. This is the part that worried me the most, as I have been coddling a back injury and even though I have been doing exercises I was given explicit instructions by my Physical Therapist: “Don’t Run”. I couldn’t not do it for this event. The day before I couldn’t take a step without some twinge of back pain, but through some miracle of lack of sleep, not running, and other events, I was able to do the 2.5 mile run healthy, (tired) and whole. (I finished well placing 83 out of the 219)  I was able to average 7.9 MPH for the distance and crossed the finish line the way I wanted to, happy healthy and strong with no flats and no injuries.

The really cute thing we saw at the finish line was this cute couple crossed the line, and while she got her award, he got down on one knee and presented her a wedding ring and proposed at the finish line. We joked it was a little unfair doing it when she didn’t have the oxygen to think straight, but she smiled and said yes, and it was really a cute and lovely moment. [Makes you wiggle and we all cheered for them again :)

This was great, I have to give a special thanks to Lauren for running all the kid interference while I was training. Elias and Joan for waking up at 6 am and cheering me on at the break of dawn. Mitchell for taking all the glorious pictures during training and race day. Linda for getting in the water with me the first day and showing me it could be done……with a wetsuit  :)   I ended up biking the 11 miles home after the ride as it was such a beautiful day and a small victory ride doing what I like best is always great  :)

I recommend this Triathalon, and would gladly do it again, if I weren’t thinking about training for an olympic or 1/2 next year……if I can get this damn swimming figured out.

Obligatory statistics:
http://www.envirosports.com/results/event/1928/results.php

Total time: 1:22:47
Swim (1/2 mile) : 22:14
Bike (12 mile) : 37:31
Run ( 2.5 mile): 18:56
22nd out for 42 in my age group (35-40)
76th overall

-Ruben

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