This was a last-minute decision to do this race. I got on the waitlist, not expecting to make it, and then whatdoyaknow, but I got in! So I just had to register for it. Luckily, Shaun also got in a few days later. This was a fun, enjoyable race. Well-organized. Long traffic line to get into the park, so plan accordingly. We opted for race-day packet pickup and that went smoothly. Body marking was done with a Sharpie. I would have preferred tattoos for a race of this caliber. Transition did not have the racks but the boxes that you put your rear wheel in. Transition spots were well-marked and clearly numbered.
In fact, everything was well-marked, especially the swim course. Tons of buoys in the water. Swim waves were rather hectic. I went in wave 4, so of course all the remaining waves proceeded to swim past me. I was kicked and jostled multiple times, and near the end it was even worse with someone outright pushing me to the bottom of the lake. However, I survived. Water temps were warm, so I wore a speed suit. Not sure how much speed it actually gave me, since I still felt slow as a slug, but I bought it, so why not wear the darn thing. This was my longest swim (in a race environment) without a wetsuit, so I’m glad I survived. Of course, there were people around me doing the annoying backstroke, breaststroke, and outright stopping, so was difficult to pass by these people.
Transition to the bike was extremely long, and consisted of running through muddy grass for what felt like eternity. I even saw some athletes walking to take a break. The bike course itself was nice and flat. 2 loops around with several right turns. I just got down on my aero bars and spun away. Some headwind at some parts. Athletes were extremely cautious on the turns (i.e. slow!!). I hardly had to brake (unless someone was in my way). I thought the cornering clearance was extravagant compared to road bike races where they barely give you any room. Afterwards, you had to do the same awkward run into transition with your bike.
Run was relatively flat, with the beginning mostly on shaded paved trails that wound through the park and provided some pretty views of the lake. Second half of the run was more in direct sunlight, and introduced some minor hills. I walked only at 3 of the aid stations to partake in the refreshing Gatorade—how wonderful it tastes when you are parched. They also handed out cold towels you could drape over yourself. That was a very nice touch.
Fast downhill finish with red carpet and a good number of spectators cheering you on, plus hearing your name being called over the loud speaker! Huge, high-quality finisher’s medal! Post-race party wasn’t much. Food consisted of a cookie, pretzel, and a Mediterranean mix of roasted veggies and chicken pieces. The beer kegs were all kicked. We walked around, browsed the merchandise, and took some photos against the backdrops. Shaun bought a tri suit on sale. We greeted and congratulated D on his 2nd place win in Aquabike. The best part was scoring 2 free cases of Liberte yogurt which was delicious!! I also liked the t-shirt which was tech fabric and came in women’s cut.
Shaun had a solid race and said it was the hardest race he’s ever done.
I Competed in my first Olympic Triathlon yesterday with my Love Allison. We’ve been training really hard this Summer. All the pain together was worth it! My bike time kicked ass (2nd), my run was good (20th), my Swim, well, I’m working on it (49th). All in all I placed 18th out of 76 in my age group. Allison (my tailwind) did great too! I loved see her on the course throughout the race! It was a great cheering each other on! Our Second Olympic Tri is approaching fast. August 13th, (Split Rock, Poconos). We can’t wait! It’s going to be just as Epic! #crazyinlove #olympictri #trilovers #trulove #swimbikerun #epic #lakemercer #newjerseystatetriathlon #iloveher #shestheone #tailwind #daaaaaw