Thursday, December 19, 2013

And Racing.............

Canberra was always going to be a team event. When Roberto and The Onion Man announced they were heading down and invited me along, I was there of course with my buds. Big Gazza in tow for the run, I signed up. I was anticipating a swim/bike for me and run for hubby. In the end my mate Skip rose to the occasion for us as the vertigo took hold and I couldn't ride. And step up she did. After a 150km ride just the day before, she did another 90 for us. What a champion! The Onion Man finally managed to finish a race after a series of unfortunate DNFs due to stomach issues (including I.M in May this year) it has been heart wrenching watching him pull out after vomiting continuously and at I.M ending up in an Ambo. So when I watched him cross the line at the end, there were whoops of joy from me and tears from his girl, Ness.

My swim was ok. A head full of negative had been pushed aside the moment my toe hit the murky, brownish green algae filled, fresh water slime that is Lake Burley Griffin. Treading water for 10minutes warming up and waiting for my start eased the stress and I finally donned my 'work' hat, or so I thought. Hooter sounded and we were off. Being part of a team means two different types of scenarios. Teams of average guys and gals who can't for some reason do the whole race, e.g like us, or they aren't up to training and can only manage sections of the race. While others are crack guns and the team has been put together with competitors who are fast in their respective section. So I wasn't surprised when the two guys next to me had left me in their wake within metres of the start. I hit out hard for a while and then settled in to the grind of a 1.9km swim whilst sighting off the Carillion for the first turning buoy.

If it weren't for the icky water and the worry of swallowing some it and the pain in my lower back from my Huub wetsuit being so buoyant making my lower back over extend, I think I really would have enjoyed the swim. Checking out the sights of hot air balloons over head and Parliament House in front of me, once again I allowed myself to disappear into my thoughts instead of staying focused. grrrr. I think enough is enough, using the excuse that 'it is just a fun event'. With the Crew all doing extremely well in their respective races at the moment, it is definitely time I pull my head in, step up to the mark and have a decent crack at a race!
A romantic picture (not mine) of the Carillion - reality is Murky brown sludge to swim in
I was pleased with my run through transition though. My back was screaming by the time I pulled out of the water and when I hit the 600-700 metre run to where Skip was waiting patiently, I was very determined to run the entire length. And I did, over taking a lot of team swimmers as I ran. Woohoo. I ran to Skip who was shouting my name. We did the timing chip exchange and she belted off into the distance. Done, I slowly walked back to where Gazza had been waiting to cheer me on. I was pleasantly surprised that there were still team swimmers coming out of the water. yeah!
Big Gazza, Me, Roberto and The Onion Man
In the end, our team finished 10th in the mixed teams. The Onion Man finished. Roberto too, but lame due to a hip flexor problem which he refuses to get treatment on, he is so tight with his money! And even though AP.10 had an athlete finish 2nd place overall, I think the winner on the day to me was Lil Dog! What an amazing champion she is. She pushed herself to the limit, beat my time in the swim, had a great bike ride and then in the run, found another gear and smashed one of our other team mates. Skip and I were whooping and shouting and cheering her on, but honestly I don't think she heard us at all. She was so focused on the job. Skip and I sent Coach updates on her progress and then at the end she ended up in the recovery tent, totally spent. Yep, I think I can learn a lesson or two from L.Dog. She is amazing!

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