So after about 10,000 emails, dozens of phone calls, and one pre-race pasta dinner, the 1st meeting of the Steve's in a triathlon finally arrived. We raced in the Endless Mountains Triathlon on Aug 17th, both of us finishing strong (Steve W. is still listed as the top swimmer, due to the fact they goofed up his age on the final race times).
Well after long hours training solo, I finally had someone to race with. Of course in a triathlon, this consists of saying good luck at the start and not seeing the other person again until the finish. But it was nice to know someone else out there racing on the same course (suffering on the same course in our case).
When Steve W. told me that the race that we would do in PA was entitled the Endless Mountains Triathlon, I figured that they named the race after the area in which it took place. I did not think that they would actually try to make the race a series of endless mountains which is what the race promoters attempted to do. The only flat part of the course was the swim. The bike was rolling hills (hills for PA mountains for Indiana) for the 1st 10 miles and then one really nasty 2 mile climb. The run consisted of going up a big hill, then going down a big hill, turning around and repeating the process.
When I checked out the race times from last year, I thought that everyone that entered the race must have been slow pokes, and that I was going to dominate the course. I did not figure that the reason that only 3 people from the previous year's race had bike speed averages over 20 MPH was that they had to use that dreaded "Granny Gear" to get up that 2 mile climb. Now, don't get me wrong, I am not complaining, I loved to race a course that was so challenging and scenic. I just wish I remembered what it was like to ride up mountains and prepared a little better.
We had a great time, I am glad that we decided to do a race together this season. I enjoyed all the spirited conversations that Steve and I have had. I cannot wait for next season to begin already. We have inspired several of my family members to consider attempting a triathlon for next year. For next year I am going to start doing Olympic distance triathlons. I have a lot of work ahead of me to get ready for such distances, but I am sure having someone that I can compare notes with via email will help make things easier.
IT'S A GIRL!!!!! Congratulations to Steve W. and his wife Deanna on the birth of their daughter, born Aug 27th.
Swim, Bike, Run, sounds easy doesn't it? Actually it sounds like a typical summer day for any 11 year old. But to a couple of 30ish friends, it was the end of an adventure that started with an e-mail. When I sent out the e-mail asking if anyone was interested in training for and participating in a triathlon, I got about 7 positive responses. But come game day, the only person that ended up showing was Steve Martinsky. Thanks Steve! At my first triathlon, I was nervous, taxed and gleeful. As I entered the water, I started thinking to myself, this is what I have spent all that time training for and I couldn't wait for the horn to blow so I could finish the journey I had begun training for about 3 months ago. When the horn blew, I'd like to say that I was like a fish, weaving in and out of participants and soaring through the water like a barracuda. However, I finished just after the mid-pack and hauled butt to the transition area (note: an error occurred in the race statistics and it appears as if I swam the entire course in about 5 minutes. <formulas>Unfortunately; it is untrue.). While in T-1, I received cheers from all of Steve's family who was there. But, when I was not as quick as they hoped, the cheers became jeers and all I could hear was "Come on Sally! Get your Mary arse in gear!" Thanks Martinsky family, I love you too!!! On the bike, I gave it my best and think I left my quads somewhere on the road around mile 12. This is a treacherous course. From mile 10 to about mile 15 was a steep incline. I mean Pennsylvania steep incline. Wow. Next year more hill training!! My T-2 time was good and then I hit the run. Not a bad run. It was an out and back loop with about four hills in it. This course was murderous. Endless Mtn's triathlon is exactly what this should be called. How apropos race director. How apropos! My goal was to finish above the 50th percentile, and I did just that. It was a great day and I am thankful that I completed it. Next year, I am planning an Olympic distance triathlon and a half marathon run. I think I caught a bug from doing this. Unfortunately, my wife was unable to attend and see me finish because she was 9 months pregnant and I was afraid the heat would get to her. But next year she promises to be there with our beautiful daughter Sydney who was born the week after the race. It was a great August for me!! Thank you.