September 30, 2007

Tri-ing With My Daughter

Well, being true to form, I am writing this post late. It's now 2 weeks after my daughter completed her first triathlon at age 17. For me, it was one of the most thrilling races I've completed. It ranks right up there with my two Ironman finishes for sure.

Let me be the bragging father for awhile. First, the triathlon was the American Memorial Triathlon in Greenwood Lake, NY. The distances: 1/2 mile Swim, 16 mile Bike and 4 Mile Run. My daughter is a swimmer by trade so I knew that would be her strength. The idea was that I would catch her on the bike and we would stay together for the rest of the race.

The swim was a mass start with about 150-200 competitors. It was 45 degrees at race time but the water was much warmer. My daughter, with no wetsuit, was nervous but ready. I told her to get out in front and see what she could do. If it got crazy crowded heading for the first buoy then stay right out of the way, I said. Well, she got out in front and did very well. She was the first female and fourth overall out of the water. As I was coming into transition, she was heading out. What a great sight!

I was very impressed with her riding. She really only trained for about 1 1/2 months for this race. Everytime I saw her ahead of me at the crest of a hill, I figured I'd catch her after I reached the same point. But when I got to that point, she had disappeared behind a bend. This went on for awhile until I finally caught up to her around Mile 5 of the bike. I stayed with her the rest of the way and she did great! Results weren't posted yet and in my excitement I didn't write down our time.

We made a quick trasnition to the run and she looked strong starting out. But what hampered her during training hit her in the race as well. She started getting a cramp right under the rib cage. For the first 2 miles we did alot of walk-run to get rid of it. She felt better over the last 2 miles and finished strong. We placed 70th and 71st, I believe. She won the age group for 24 and under! It was a proud moment for sure. And a great start to her triathlon career!

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