Ok sorry ( Cheryl) but i have been busy boating and drinking lemon drop martinis. I dont know how most people do this every weekend. I think its way more tiring than training! But a good change.
Swim :) I had two chances to swim in Alta Lake before race day. Both times it was 45-50 deg air and windy. So COLD. The water didnt feel much warmer and my internal temperature said it was close to 60 deg. So i can do that. But i was sure cold when i got out. Lovely water though and amazing views. We didnt see the course marked till we got down there race AM so it was a guessing game and just a chance to stretch it out and for me, to plan for the 1st hour freeze i knew i would have on the bike.
Race day dawned and I wont bore you with the " here is what i ate" that everyone seems to be interested in. If you care it was the same old same old ...rice toast with nut butter, banana, a few other secret things ( not really, whey) but i met up with Jared and we dropped bags and headed to the swim. We had to bus down there and they moved us along really well and fast. It was crazy that it was race day. I remember thinking the AM of my first IM that the next time i would come back to that hotel room I wouldbe an Ironman. I took a moment to smile at that thought, bc the day goes SO FAST once you are out there.
We arrived at the swim start and it was lovely out, a bit chilly around 50 deg and dry. So we hovered in our morning clothes till the last minute. I had a hate and a jacket and pants. Gloves even. The sun was so nice and i knew that would be my saving grace as i rode that first hour. Alot of athletes had been in a tizzy pre race dropping their bikes off. " What pressure? Should i deflate a a bit. At IM florida this happened, they may pop, etc..." I just stuck with my plan that I use and that is to NOT TOUCH them race morning unless they are obviously flat or lower. I think you can overinflate or mess your valve, blow em up the night prior and unless its 100 deg out just leave em. All good when i arrived. Loaded nutrition and then just waited.
About 1 hour pre swim i ate 1/2 a powerbar. Then 15 min pre start a gel. And water. I was topped off for sure. When i got in the water with Jared I Said my good byes and we seperated. I wanted nothing to do with the buoy line and so was going to swim a bit wide and hopefully avoid the corner mayhem. It was really hard to tell even where the start line was and even when the cannon went off we were a bit confused, no count down. " That is it?" and off we went. IT was the typical mayhem for a bit, the usual folks ( green caps, sorry) who start out fast and fade after 400 m. So i still stayed outside the buoy line and while it felt congested i could swim. I really feel like the first loop went by slowly. I was trying to avoid the sandwich effect where i see two caps ( green) coming at me from both ways and i am the center target. They dont know it but neither is swimming straight but will collide with me in the middle. Its good to be able to bilateral breathe! So i would have to dodge or often go behind one, and then find a clear path. The 2nd loop felt a bit faster but i still really didnt feel i had good open water. My swim time was not as fast as I Wanted but it is what it is, and it was over before i knew it. Two loops was surely slower than one but it was lovely out there and while i had a few moments of " I am cold " I tried to just forget about it.
Running into the change tent the volunteer said " YOU will warm up fast, you will warm up fast..." over and over bc i was shaking. I did put on a base layer and arm warmers and no i did NOT overheat. So there :) It was a super thin baselayer and that first hour with the shade and some descending i couldnt have been happier. Arm warmers came off around 2-3 hours in but i can handle that heat, it wasnt that hot ( to me)
The funny things i remember about the swim:
My engagement ring sits on my right hand, and it was swinging like mad. I knew it wouldnt fall off bc my knuckle is big enough but i was thinking how i didnt want Rich at the bottom of the lake.
I wished it was a 1 lap swim.
Everytime i tried to get closer to the buoy line i decided i didnt like getting hit or punched or kicked enough and i moved gently back to the side about 10 feet. It was minimal why bother.
I think i am a strong swimmer but i really felt flat the first 500 M. I really think that things kick in for me about half way in a swim this distance. Being patient helped but it sure felt like a long swim. Many said it was but whatever, moving on it was time to bike.