Making The Jump From A Sprint To An Olympic Triathlon – Laura’s Story
Have you done your first Sprint triathlon and are now ready to tackle an Olympic distance?
Maybe you want to a new challenge, or your friend convinced you to train for a longer distnace. Maybe you want to do it as a celebration for a milestone birthday, or to prove to yourself that you can do it. Or maybe, like Laura, you are inspired by watching others complete an Olympic triathlon.
Whatever your reason, check out Laura’s inspiring story of her first, and certainly not last, Olympic triathlon:
Last year I competed in a Sprint triathlon and watched in awe as others finished the Olympic distance. It was then I decided that I would be that athlete next year.
That Fall I suffered a stress fracture which stopped my running. So my wonderful husband bought me a bike trainer and I pedaled all winter and all spring, taking the Fuji outside whenever possible.
As soon as my foot healed I began a slow, progressive return to running. Between January and June I logged over 350 miles. Some miles were from local races but most just around my neighborhood. When it was too icy, I ran in the alleys.
The year flew by. Race day! I told myself to listen to just have fun. It’s great advice to calm the race day jitters too. No matter the outcome it would be a PR!
The 20 laps in the pool were uneventful although it seemed to take forever. Twenty-two minutes later I was out and heading into TI.
Now for the bike. I knew I was ready for this portion and was able to maintain a 16 mph average for very hilly course. A great tip is too fill your water bottle with a combination of GU and a fruit-flavored caffeine mix. During the straight,flat sections I took a couple gulps to stay hydrated and to take in calories.
There was a sharp right turn heading back into town at the base of a decent.I kept telling myself to slow down and try not to crash. The pain of a fall and the fact that a professional photographer was right at the base of the hill was enough motivation to keep me calm and upright!
The clouds had burnt off and the overcast sky turned sunny and humid by the time I took off for the 10k. Great. I kept the mantra “run and done” in my head as the cement turned to a gravel road…. with hills….. Yep, had to stop and walk a few times. With the uphill there came a downhill through the city park on a curving bike path.
A couple shot blocks gave me the energy needed to finish off the last 3 miles. What a feeling! Even though I told myself just to have fun, I’m still very competitive and wanted to complete in under 3 hours and I did: 2:58!
This won’t be my last Olympic distance and I have a time to improve on for next year now! My third overall finish and 2nd AG were well worth the training.
Thanks, TwoTri for all the tips and motivation!
Thanks for sharing Laura! You ROCK!
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