No one wakes up one morning and says, “I want to compete in a triathlon” out of nowehere. For me it was really thought out. My Aunt Barbara posted a link for Tri for a Cure on my Facebook wall in January and asked me and my Aunt Cathy if we wanted to sign up. I “liked” the post, signed up, and we were both pulled from the lottery a few weeks later. Of course I could run a 5k. I swam like half a time in a lake last summer and biking is eaaaaaasy. Super thought out, you guys. I kept running and eating cupakes and avoiding the situation as best I could.
One day in March I was talking to my parents and had a mini-panic attack. I had to get a bike. And a swim cap. And learn what words like “brick” meant. “What the hell did you think you were going to do, just show up?” my mom asked. Uhmm…
I realized I’d better get my act together or I’d make a complete fool out of myself infront of some serious people participating for a serious cause. My uncle lent me the bike he used when he competed in a triathlon and I got it readjusted with a new seat and pedals. I got that cap, dusted off the TYR suit I used as a camp counselor a few summers ago, and jumped in the pool.
I distinctly remember taking my first stroke and being unable to start the second because I was laughing so hard. Who, exactly, the BLEEP did I think I was? I spent the last few weeks being able to ride no more than 6 miles without wanting to die (I didn’t remember that bike seats suck because the last time I rode a bike it had hot pink streamers coming from it) how the BLEEP was I going to pull this off? What.the.BLEEP.Melissa.
I cursed a lot in that pool. But I kept moving forward. All the way to Maine, where I hugged my aunt with our wetsuits on before we ran into the water at the start of the tri. We finished. And it was BLEEPING awesome.
Transition area before:
Half an asthma attack and some energy gels later:
Things I never thought of/questioned before this experience:
Wind. Get outta here.
Salt water. Stop making me so dehydrated.
Ear infections. Will I get one?
Inhaler. Where are you? (Found out I have a little sports-induced asthma, cute.)
Fueling. Tequila, same diff.
I spent a significant amount of time at a street fair talking about bikes when I should’ve been scoping out the food truck scene. I watched the Tour de France on my plane ride to New Orleans. I foam roll and read Runner’s World. I have zero idea what’s going on here. Who do I think I am and what am I doing? I don’t know. But I’m having a good time trying to figure it out.
Big ups to my family who’ve supported my midnight runs and for not freaking when I turned the bathroom into an acquatics zone for three months. They stood in the rain waiting for me to finish and handed me crumb cake when I did. I love you, crazies.
So. I’m a triathlete. Always think infinite possibilities.