Monday, April 1, 2013

Oceanside 70.3


6 years ago I was prepping for my 1st 70.3 and my 2nd triathlon....I was so nervous and excited!!   ..... I did the race for the next 4 years and did better and better each year and in 2011 finally won my AG and secured a Kona Slot and the dream of winning my AG!

2012 I was ready to kill it ....but I broke my leg in February slipping on the stairs in a "race" with my dogs  in an epic bike accident where I went off a cliff and barely survived...so Oceanside was out, as was SuperSeal, Wildflower and what seemed like a hundreds of $$'s in race fees.  In any case...I survived Oceanside as a spectator in 2012 with schnapps in my coffee  and happily cheered everyone on.   2013 I did not register for O'side due to IM Cabo so not "participating" this year was not so emotionally painful.

I decided to volunteer when I could and was coaching 3 athletes who toed the line.  Friday was great fun at the Questions booth...seeing so many first timers loaded with anxiety and excitement about the big day. I remember the deer in headlights feeling at my first expo, every one looks so fast and calm.  It make me aware of how we build confidence and knowledge with years of racing.  What are the bags for? how will my gear get from T1 to T2, how do I get to T2, what about my wetsuit etc... once you have done a few races you figure it out and trust the system.  Friday was a long day but Saturday, race day, I got the memo to be there at 4am.

When my alarm went off at 3:15 I realized I was up earlier that I would be if I was racing.   More questions from athletes but mostly guided the volunteers and spectators.   We were just down from the swim so missed the excitement of the start but it was a great spot to see everyone riding out and on their way.   The energy of a race is amazing..I was sad I was not geeting ready to swim.  And watching the run is so inspiring to see how hard everyone was working...game faces on,  working towards their goal and to see how they light up just a bit when you call their name or shout a few words of encouragement.  I know as a racer how much it helps but it is just as exciting to see as a spectator.

Weather was perfect... calm and sun came out but not too hot.  Swim was ideal as there were so many PR's.  After my shift ended at 10 it was time to find real food and coffee get on the course and find my athletes.  There are so many TCSD friends,  NYTRO women as well as my athletes it it seemed I saw someone I knew every few minutes.   Trying to spot people, track on line, cheer and not miss anyone...is a feat of multitasking!   .....it was an awesome day.  13 hours later I was in my car heading home....exhausted, swollen feet and fulfilled.  For all of us who race, truly the volunteers and spectators are the ones who work the hardest.