Sunday, June 01, 2008

Not your average race report

But first a little chat about Trimama's bootay. I've noticed a mysterious trend of pictures lately, with an unusual emphasis on my posterior. I thought I was being paranoid until I was looking through "Highlight" pictures with Little Neighbor Boy (LNB) last night. I was showing him pics from the kids Miracles of Mitch tri last summer. 60 highlight photos including this. (sorry you've got to scroll to pic 41) I've long threatened to rent the space. I'd prefer Iron Jenny sponsorship with Immodium. I'd be proud to wear an Immodium singlet so long as "We don't run" could be emblazoned on my back side. I'm on the wrong computer to post more derierre pics to prove my point, and that would be gratuitous for this family friendly blog.

So, on to the Buffalo Triathlon race report. Let me just say, it feels great to be a triathlete. I wrote my buddy Kahuna an email yesterday following an early morning lake swim, it just doesn't get much sweeter then this. And it's sweet because I have family and friends and a sense of humor (which becomes essential as the race unfolds) but let's go back a week or so shall we.

For any of you readers who track back a few years with me, you know I carry a certain amount of baggage in my brain that pops up in PTSD symptoms. Generally, healthy living, good meds, a great support system, a rock solid faith and a cold beer at the end of the day all keep the nightmares in check. But some weeks, the nightmares win and decide to pop up during the day. I hate these weeks because there is a decisive shift from my controlling the nightmares to the nightmares controlling me. My brain gets tired, I have to sleep more, and I definitely need to go at it on auto pilot a little more. Flashbacks are weird. They tug at your emotions for a good deal of time, reaching out for your conscious mind, like a splinter festering. Eventually whatever event is driving the wreck makes it's way to the mental video room and all hell breaks loose. Blah. Strangely, this nightmare made a full blown appearance while I was out on a training run with Taconite. (Now Tac isn't all that scary to run with, by contrast, he knows well how to sit quietly in the car while I tremble, and hold my hand until all is well) It's not all that uncommon for nightmares to pop while I train-training builds seratonin-seratonin is one of the complex chemicals of memory. Exercise has been an essential tool toward a healthy, integrated life for me. So, there I was running, brain freaking out, and I could feel my blood sugar plummet. My brain was working overtime. I made it back to the car, drank some water, ate a cookie and sat there and trembled until the thoughts passed. Tac arrived, and waited with me. Tac's the only one I let in on this part of my life. I tend to be pretty reticent about talking about my life. One might think talking would help, but by contrast, it's more like turning out the lights and waiting for the monsters to come out from under the bed. I tread carefully. There's enough toxin in the world anyhow. So, why share now, Trimama?

Because, sharing what my week was about gives you a little insight into how freakin awesome it was to be back to racing again!

Now the bummer of PTSD is that you can contain it but you really (at least that I know) can't control it. In the back of my mind I'm always aware (and a little cautious) of the potential on the race course. Racing seems to have it's own compartment in my brain- I think it's because it's so darn fun! So, let's get on with the race.

I bought a new wet suit on Ebay-long sleeve. As of Saturday, time and weather had not permitted me to hit the open water in this suit. So, Saturday morning, 0600, with fog lifting off the chilly lakes, Tac, TriThunderboy and I hit our favorite training lake. The suit worked like a dream How can you go wrong swimming with the rising sun? I hit the sand after a good 30 minute training swim and dolphined out of the water, practicing for T1. The suit was a bit tough to pull off the legs, they were too long. But here in lies my dilemma, I didn't want to alter the suit before racing in it because if the legs are in the wrong place my calves cramp on the swim. So I left it long. And here is were a sense of humor becomes important.

Race morning was beautiful and the rubber ducky's were towed into position. I bantered with my fellow athletes, met up with friends I knew and made my way to the lake. A fellow IMAZ athlete, Robert met me lakeside and we zipped each other up. Or at least I thought we did. The horn blew, I took off, and about 150 yards out I felt a sudden chill down my back. Hmm. I don't recall that feeling, and I know my wet suit was toasty when I took off. Robert had missed the top of the zipper and my back opened. I made my way to a lifeguard for help getting zipped back up. 3 or so minutes later I was back in the water. The rest of the swim was uneventful until I hit the shore. I can strip in 15 seconds on shore with help from the water. Not today. The wet suit that didn't want to stay on, didn't want to come off. Several of my friends, Nick, Laura, Tac, as well as the crowd were there cheering. Go, Trimama, Go. "I can't get my da*& wet suit off!" Nick had some good advice, standup and push at it with my legs. Ok, then I went down. And my knee screamed at me. And for a brief moment I thought that was the end of the season. "Don't panic. Stand up" "Ok, I can stand" Finally, after 4-5 minutes wrestling with it, I finally pulled my left leg out. The crowd cheered. That was a little embarassing. And riotously funny at the same time. I mean what are you going to do. (Note to self: scissors, body glide and practice)

Swim 34:XX Now, when I subtract my buffoonery, that is a Trimama PR!! And I never felt like I was swimming hard, just nice easy strokes. (at the risk of sounding like a chronically injured person, I think I have even more swim in me- I'd had a chiropractic appointment and the doc dislocated my left arm Friday. I got HG to relocate it Saturday, but it was tender from swimming Sat morning, so I favored it- I need to do some PT and get those interior shoulder muscles stronger)

Bike: No FEAR! I Flew! I past people and I rocked the course with another PR! My cyclocomputer hadn't been working, but bubble bike must have known it was time to race, because, when I needed it, I looked down expecting to see blank and was pleased to see 22's often enough. Got a lot of inquiries about my tattoo. I think it made folks feel better as I past them. Oh, she's and Ironman, she can pass me. I like making folks feel better about themselves, so I'm upgrading the tattoo to an M-Dot with a Yellow winking smiley face in the circle, after Arizona. I don't know my final time, but my bike computer had me at 18 over 24.5 miles. So, while my knee can be jacked up on the bike at times, giving me no power whatsoever, all of the squats and lunges seems to have built some other power that engages at opportune time. That, or it was the "fast" air I had the race mechanic put into the tires pre race. Finally, aerobottles- use them, love them. They make nutrition simple and constant.

Run: uggh. Well, not really. It's just that it takes me 2 miles to warm up, this race no exception. My goal was to do the 10K in an hour. I felt great overall. I never bonked and I had a strong final 3 miles, surprising Tac. But it still took me 1:04 to finish. I'd forgotten the hills on the run. The very good thing was that the hip junk that plagued my half mary was no where to be found and my legs felt good, albeit slow. Maybe I need to do Trisaratops blood doping technique :-)

So, 3:07 total time. My goal was to break 3:10. My previous time on this course was a 2:57-but I knew that was elusive considering the knee and the continued rehab. I finished strong and ecstatic.

I am so ready to train again. Next up, Chisago Half in July.

The Tribe wraps up school this week, with the big 8th grade graduation. One final week of a quiet house. I'm going to need training this summer :-)

3 weeks to Coeur D Alene!

15 comments:

triguyjt said...

Thanks for being so open about your situation and your point about the reason you chose to put it out there is very cool. You just love to race!! fantastic...

Where are those wetsuit strippers when you need em the most!!
but your best line in the post, I think..was....
"How can you go wrong swimming with the rising sun?"

Damn right Trimama!!
thanks for the nice post

Lana said...

You are a rock star!!! So glad your knee didn't bother you and you felt great out there!! Congrats!!

21stCenturyMom said...

Racing trumps PTSD - love it and I'm so happy that's how it works for you.

Congratulations on your race. It makes you more than a survivor - it makes you a supah-stah!

tarheeltri said...

I've had that same wetsuit feeling! Way to hang tough on the run. Great race!

Fe-lady said...

Congratulations on your season opener...great to hear that your knee isn't holding you back from breaking PRs and your brain isn't holding you back from living your great life! :-)

stronger said...

At least the dang thing came off! Woulda been a long bike ride with the wetsuit. Love to see you having a great time!

Wendy said...

The season is On! Good job out there Tri-Mama!

faithrunner said...

Yeah, great job trimama!!! You rocked despite all the issues, you overcame them all!! :) Maybe we should go out for lunch more often. Keep up the great work. I hope to see you at the graduation.

Bigun said...

I really think your blog needs more butt-pics. Tac...a little help here...?

Jumper 2.0 said...

You leg looked a little stiff when you started the run but you looked like you can handle it, so I knew you would do well.
Wish I saw you finish but had to get to my son's baseball game.
Let's train together sometime when you and the tribe get back.

Flatman said...

UH OH!!! high school next year!!?!?!


Nice race...

Michele said...

Great season opener. Congrats.

IronTriTim said...

Trimama great to learn a little bit more about you. You and Tac are the best.
Can certainly relate to your suit issues.. I am also a full suit wearer and take longer transition times with faster swim times.

Brent Buckner said...

Find that training groove!

TJ said...

Congrats on your race!
Can't wait to see the new tattoo after AZ.