Sunday, June 14, 2015

Who you callin' rational?

No rational person would stand in the rain (and not some namby-pamby sweet little trickle of rain either, mind you, this was more along the lines of a gentle monsoon) for more than 90 minutes waiting for a race of any kind.

In related news, I spent my morning in the company of completely irrational women.

Today was the Esprit de She women's sprint triathlon. It was a little bittersweet for our tribe, because team-mate Linda is out for the season with an injury. After training together in one capacity or other over the years, having one of our number on the sidelines just makes everything feel a bit off. But it also motivates us forward, to do our best for those who - for the moment - cannot.

Before we even got our transition areas set up, the skies opened. We shed our outer layers and just wandered around in our tri suits ... which would end up wet, anyway, but we got soaked far earlier than we wanted to.

We were pruney before we even approached the start line.

As we stood, huddling under an umbrella, we remarked to one another how days like this is when the cream rises to the top.
Pam, Di and I, crammed under my little green umbrella.

Most people, faced with the challenges of this morning, would roll over and go back to bed. Not us; no, we headed out, ever mindful of the forecast, and approached the start line.

On days like this, only the strong even bother to start. You have to be some sort of crazy, tenacious lunatic with a heart full of hope to stand, rain-soaked, waiting for anything ... but especially to waiting for somewhere in the neighborhood of two hours of sweat-swear-word-producing activity. And yet, here we were. 

Race time rolled around, and we divided into our respective waves. Our tribe has a sort of unwritten rule; even if you start together, generally speaking, your race is your race. So we were all off on our own journeys, starting with a half mile in the water. 

While the rain continued to fall, in case you'd forgotten

After the swim (which was pretty awesome; I was faster this year than ever before), it was time to hop on the bike. Somewhere in about the last quarter of my 13-mile bike ride, I thought to myself, "experiences like this are where goals are reached or abandoned." And I think I was right about that. I was a little pokey here, but on the wet pavement and with a front brake that wasn't quite functioning optimally, I was happy to finish only a few minutes behind last year's time.

Finally, it was time for the run. Finally. By now, it was good and steamy outside, and the rain was done. My legs had just about nothing left in them, but ever forward I pressed on. So. Tired. I had to walk more than I would've liked, but in truth, today was all about conquering the elements. Everything else? That's gravy. 

Mmmm ... gravy ...

Eventually, we all made it to the finish line. Pam earned herself a new PR. Diane finished her very first triathlon. Megan crushed her PR by 23 minutes. And me? Well, I shaved time off my swim and took a little more time with everything else. But I sure do look cute.

Four ridiculous, irrational women, whom I love beyond measure.
Pam, me, Diane and Megan ... my gorgeous triathlete tribe.

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