I really only had two goals for the run: do a better transition and hold as steady a pace as possible with no walking. I accomplished those goals
Coming in off the bike route, I tried something I had never done before. Instead of running in my bike shoes, I slipped my feet out of the shoes, pedaled on my shoe tops, and jumped off the bike. I nearly fell as my legs adjusted to bearing weight again, but it worked. Ran into transition, slipped on the shoes, socks, hat, and I was gone. T2 time was 1:35.
On the run, I just settled into a rhythm, nothing too strenuous, that I knew I could maintain. After seeing some pictures, I wish I had focused on form a little more. Even so, along the way, I passed several men younger than me who were really struggling, which is great motivation for a 40 year old who is trying to age in reverse. To paraphrase Iron Wil, we're all racing the grim reaper, but when he catches me, he's going to be wheezing and clutching his chest.
The biggest motivation was coming up behind a guy with an m-dot on a hat from the Ironman World Championships in Kona. Now, neither of us were moving terribly fast, but it was on.
It was so on.
I dropped Mr. Kona like a bad habit at mile 4 and never saw him again.
I did see other people I knew on the course, including Houston Racing teamates, both in the race and at the water station that the club staffed. The crazy tri club decked themselves out in an Egyptian theme. MisheleK, dressed as a mummy offered me solid food, but I declined on the grounds that I make it a practice not to puke in front of girls.
The time wasn't terribly spiffy (2:01:59), especially considering the course was about a half mile short (ironically, it was the Boy Scouts that sent us the wrong way). Nevertheless, that is much faster than I ran my first, open, half-marathon without all the biking and swimming. Even being faster, it required less effort. My average heartrate was only 142, well shy of latate threshold. Last time I raced, I was toast for a week. This time, I went faster and am already back to a full training schedule.
The other really really good part of the day was catching up with Christy (to my right in black) and Tricia (behind the barrier in yellow) who were part of the possie who caravaned to Lubbock for my first HIM last year. That, and meeting new friends besides, was the highlight above and beyond having a mentally strong race. We all had good races, Christy especially. This mini freak of nature set a personal best, smashed the course by turning in a 5:10, and was fifth female overall.
THE REALLY REALLY GOOD
This was the first time Superpounce and the Pack Leader have seen me at a triathlon. They got to see me pass their vantage point three times. The last time, Superpounce asked the Mrs. if she could run with me to the finish, and just before jumping out, inquired, "it's not 10 miles is it?" She grabbed my hand and we brought it on home together.
THE OTHER REALLY REALLY GOOD
THE BAD AND THE UGLY
There was no bad. There was no ugly. I cannot wait to race again.
Bring on Wildflower.