This 4th of July was an amazing day. Independence Day. A day to celebrate Freedom. Freedom that did not come easy to our country. It did not come without cost. It took many willing to sacrifice for what they say they believed to be true and right. It took determination to stand strong. It took courage. Many died for the freedoms we have today in America.
As I think about this day and the fact that I participated in another triathlon relay on this day of all days, it is quite clear to me that my weight loss is less and less about pounds shed and more and more about the freedom I have gained this past year. The almost 65 lbs I have lost has not come easy. There have been many battles fought. Some won and some lost. But the war is far from over. It certainly has not come without cost. Many sacrifices have had to be made as I choose a new way of living and eating and thinking. It has taken determination and courage to face the parts of my story that I have not wanted to face. I am certain I will have to continue to look at aspects of my life, past, present and future, that play a factor in my weight and health. In many ways a part of me has died and a new me has been resurrected. A me that enjoys athletic activities and healthy choices (most of the time anyway).
So this past weekend, I was once again part of a triathlon relay team. My team this year consisted of me on the swim portion, Aaron on the bike (15 miles) and then Marissa would run (3 miles). In addition to my team, Coach would be participating in his first ever triathlon and as you know, has been alying down smack talk about how he will beat my team. We also had friends Todd and Holly (Marissa;s parents) participating as a relay team along with their friend Clint. Finally our friend Ann was also competing in the triathlon for the first time by herself(she was on my team last fall) SO many friends participating in fun athletic activities. Can it get any better than that?!
If you recall, last August I did this as well. This time, my swim was .43 mile or 700 meters. This is 200 meters further than the last relay. Last time I swam 500 meters in 28 minutes (and change). I really wanted to do this current swim in under 30 minutes but really was not sure I could do that. During a practice swim it took me 33 minutes and while I was confident I could complete the swim, I wasn’t sure I could take that much time off my swim with less than 2 weeks to go before the swim.
Of course once again as I saw the buoys laid out, it looked much farther than I thought. I began to question the sanity of doing this. I was nervous again. It is funny to me that as chatty as I am, when I am really really nervous, I go super quiet. I started out my swim rather quickly. I had Coach in my head laying down smack talk. While I KNEW I could not beat him, I still wanted to do my best and at least give him a run for his money. I started out too quickly though and before I even hit the first buoy I was quite fatigued and questioning whether I could do this or not. I wanted to stop and float for a minute and recoup but I looked around and realized, at this point I was NOT last in the water (yet) AND stopping would give Coach an extra edge over me. Oh Heck NO! I was not giving him that! AND I really didn’t want to be last in the water (again) So I kept going, but I did slow my stroke down and my body settled into a steady rhythm.
As I approached the half-way point I looked at my watch and realized it had only been 10 minutes. HOLY CRAP! I could do this in 20 minutes at this rate! I didn’t realize I wasn’t really at the halfway point yet! By now, I am the last in the water and the kayaking lifeguard people were checking on me. I just kept telling them I am fine. I am slow, but fine. They can worry if my stroke changes pace or starts getting sloppy, but until then, I am fine. Of course, I was getting leg and foot cramps this time that I had to keep kicking out! They have to stay with the last swimmer, so of course I had an escort in! I am determined that won’t happen next time!
I swam until my hand hit the bottom and realized I was at shore. I stood up and about fell over as I tried to run/walk through the last of the water and up a tiny hill and over to the bikes, to Aaron. My legs were rubber and all cramped up and didn’t want to move in a walking/running motion but I forced them too. This time I RAN on my own over to Aaron. And I was proud! I remember thinking…”girl…settle down you are a big girl running in a bathing suit, think of what this looks like!” Then I thought…”damn straight I am, I bet it is beautiful!” I felt strong. I felt free! And I was soo bummed that once again I paid no attention to what Aaron was wearing so I didn’t know what I was looking for as I watched for him to come in on the bike!
As soon as I passed off to Aaron, I fell down. My legs really were rubber and my feet just wanted to curl up into balls. Thank Goodness for Adam who was there and helped me get the cramps out of my feet. Oh yeah, My time in the water? 25:10. I beat my last years time while swimming further! I think that is pretty sweet!
Aaron took off on his 15 mile ride and did amazing. He finished in 49:25. So glad to have him on my team!
When he came back, Marissa was free to take off on her run. She was able to finish her piece in approximately 27 minutes. (I forgot to time her and there was no split timing!)
All in all, our team finished in 1:42:25. We came in # 42 of 62. So we weren’t last!
Ann came in #32 of 62 and her final time was 1:34:42
Coach finished #49 of 73 and his final time was 1:29:08.
I can’t find Todd and Holly’s team time!
All in all though…great job everyone.
Now I must keep swimming and pick up my running a bit. August 29th the plan is still to do one more triathlon. It is the same one I did last year. But this time I am going to do 2 legs. I will swim 500 meters. Angela will then bike and we will run it together! This one I want to do in 20 minutes for the swim and I do NOT want to be escorted in. Those are my goals.