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Racing Rattlesnake!!!

This weekend is the weekend of EVERYTHING it seems - Leadville 100, Pikes Peak Ascent & marathon, Warrior Dash, age group nationals and...
 Rattlesnake is a two-day triathlon series out here at the Aurora Reservoir, and olympic on Saturday and a sprint on Sunday. Some people do the Back2back. I considered it, but at the time of signing up, didn't know if I could commit to both days, so I opted for the olympic.  Figured it would be a great training race for the Harvest Moon 1/2 Ironman next month, as HM is also in the res. Plus, our family loves the Aurora Res, our kids could dig in the sand forever.

So, Saturday morning it was off to the res for me. Since it was only a few miles, I rode in on my bike. It was a nice, relaxing ride at 6 in the morning with no traffic and a great little warm-up. I got there, into transition, found a few friends and then it was off on a short warm-up run. I timed it well, maybe a little too close, but it wasn't too hectic or stressed of an atmosphere, so all was good. I got down to the water just in time to dunk in before finding Ross and the kids and getting into the corral.

The swim is a time trial start, which I had never done before. Basically, they lined us up oldest to youngest, women first, then men. Everyone entered the water one at a time in 4-5 second intervals. This was actually very nice avoiding the mass chaos of a wave start. As I swam out, I realized that the buoys were strung together by a yellow rope. Sweet! Since I breathe to my right and the buoys were on my right, this was optimal for me. No need to sight, just keep the yellow rope right there by side. This worked well for the first lap, but then everyone caught on and there was a little more chaos the second loop around as now everyone was in the water. I still didn't mind it though. Looking to my right beat sighting into the sun AND I found some feet. Cool. I practiced drafting - not entirely sure if I was doing it right - but liking it. After awhile, I kept tapping the toes in front of me. I am sure the woman/man was probably annoyed and was thinking "just pass me already!", so I did. Around them I went and on my way. I was pretty happy with the swim as one of my weaknesses is sighting and swimming straight and I seemed to conquer it!

I got out of the water and Ross was there excited and cheering me on! (The boys were digging in the sand, go figure.) I ran up and through transition and off on the bike.

In Loveland earlier this year I realized I don't know how to "race" a bike. I just ride a bike course and when I am done, I am done. My goal for this bike was to be uncomfortable. Not redlining, but a bit out of my comfort zone. Thankfully, this course was FILLED with hills, so it was not an issue getting my heart rate elevated. I just had to keep it that way. And I did, so I was pretty proud of myself for that. Before I knew it, I was back at the reservoir and into T2. {Where I heard my kids screaming. "GO MOMMY!" - it is awesome having a small transition where the kids can watch and cheer!}

On with my race belt, run shoes and out on the course. I didn't really know what to expect, but I did want to run the second half of my run faster than my first, so I settled into what I thought I could maintain for 6 miles. And that I did. As I progressed, I wasn't feeling so good nutritionally. I tried to keep my heartrate in check where I could take on some water and calories without wanting to yack. It was a tad bit hot and my nutrition was off so I just continued doing what I could to make my way through the run. Again, I was on my way back before I knew it. I can do anything for 6 miles, right?

Hit the end and saw the kids in their swimsuits. They ran out to the shoot with me and were able to cross the finish line - all smiles!

I was done, yay! What I realized was that with the time trial start, I had NO CLUE what I had done, what time I had done, where I had placed, nothing. Hmph. And, figuring that I am never the "fastest" at shorter distances and such, I just went along figuring I was somewhere in the middle of the pack - like usual... I got some food, hung out with some friends, the kids, enjoyed the post-party (which was a nice set-up).

It wasn't till the results were posted that I realized I placed - 2nd in my age group! This is fun for me. I haven't placed in anything in triathlon, ever. I have plenty of friends who do. All the time. But, me, well... it's not really a consideration. But today it was. And that felt good and I was proud of my accomplishment for me.
Accepting my award with Yon, announcer and friend.
Krista and I with our age group awards (and Lincoln who wants to be in every pict)
And then, of course, was an afternoon of playing at the beach!!!
All you have to do is bring sand toys and my kids are in heaven.
The two reservoirs + two cities they created next to the big reservoir.