This is Billy Self's Story in Keller at the St. Patrick's Day Triathlon:
In reality, I was prepared to not compete the full event in Keller...it was so cold, I kept thinking, "what if I just skip the bike, go straight to the run..." I would have felt like a wuss, so I went for it.
Good thing too, because it seems as if 100% of the people that showed up did so as well. I think it goes without saying that many people decided to not get out of bed this morning. -bagnell-
In the Keller pool, it was a beautiful thing with 50 meter lanes that were 9 FEET WIDE. That, my friend, is just plain awesomeness. You can't even see the other swimmer in the lane when it's that wide. Had a great warm-up in the pool and so did Chase. He warmed up with a little butterfly. I promise he was not showing off.
For my race, there was a lot of traffic ahead of me. I started 48th and passed 10 swimmers in the first 3 laps. A couple of big traffic jams at each of the first few laps. It's a miracle I got through them all without a fist fight.
In the first transitition (T1) I found myself getting stuck on the long sleeve polypro and gloves, but it was so worth it. I ran out of T1 with my big thick wool socks on and had a good mount as I left T1. My T1 time was 2 minutes and 16 seconds... and as Chase correctly asked me, "2 minutes?!? Did you try on a whole different outfit?" I could have done it faster...
I felt pretty comfortable on the bike. It did bother me that my legs were incredibly dark (I can't see color very well - red/green colorblind) and just assumed they were purple. I was happy with my performance(20mph avg)...although my biggest concern in every single triathlon is the T2 into the run. "Will my legs cramp in the first half mile?" is always what I'm thinking.
First of all, I jumped out of T2 with a quick sprint and almost complete ATE IT!!! I almost ran straight into a race official as I yelled, "OH SH*$!" (sorry kiddos). Anyway, it was because my legs simply were not underneathe me and just stumbled until I could figure out where my legs were.
This time out of T2 I felt a slight twing in my calfs, but thank God Almighty that it went away after a few steps. I started cruising along at what I thought was a sub 7 minute mile until I got hit with a moderately bad side stitch at the halfway point. I had to bend over a couple of times as I ran to ease the pain. After half a mile of running half bent over, the pain subdued and I was able to continue on.
There was a Wiscousin guy about my age that passed me with less than half a mile to go, and I hung on to his heels for a while.... but with about 100 yards to go, he had a kick that I didn't. I ended up with a 7:05 minute pace that I'm moderately happy with and want to avoid side stitches next time.
All in all, a fantastic start to the new year of triathlons and I'm very proud of the entire team that competed on that weekend. Hopefully we can get some more posts from other teammates soon!