Tuesday, March 25, 2014

My First OWS..My First Triple Brick

As you are aware, I am currently training for my first triathlon.  Ok, well maybe my second but I consider my first one to be a "baby" one!  It was in the pool and it was reverse and it was HARD!

I am training with a private coach as well as one with Team in Training.  Training with TEAM is important for me.  I fundraise to eliminate cancer.  Unfortunately we have all been effected with cancer in one way or another.

Saturday was my first triple brick.  We arrived at the beach at 7 am and it took us, well me, about an hour for us to get out wetsuits on.  I had to try on more than one and was lucky enough that Andi brought a few extras.  Coach Gene showed us how to set up transition, how to position helmets, socks. I learned about a water basin for your feet.  Who would have known!  Around 8 we went into the water.  We were only to go waist deep and swim back and forth between two poles and use a building and some trees for sighting.  Yup, Definitely did NOT get the sighting down as I was everywhere.

The Swim

When I first put my feet into the water I was surprised how warm the water was.  I have no idea the temperature but I was expecting COLD, like New Jersey water cold!  It was pleasantly nice.  I started to freak.  One of my biggest fears is the ocean.  When I go to the beach I do not go past my waist because I do not even like to get my hands wet.  I don't like them feeling sticky.  (come to think of it, I don't even remember them being sticky after exiting the water- magic I guess).  I mumbled to myself, "Why did I sign up for this".  I think we were all nervous but knew we had to dive right in.  I looked around, watched everyone else go it and I was off.  I was surprised I couldn't see the bottom of the water.  I was shocked.  I just assumed it was something I would see.  One lap was very scary, I had no idea where I was going, which direction I was swimming in, was I going to hit anyone, was anything going to eat me.  Ok, so maybe the whole is anything going to eat me wasn't going through my head.  While I tried to focus on my stroke I would try and sight.  At some points I would stop and just try and figure out where I was, which direction I was swimming in.  It helped having a wetsuit because I never once felt like I was going to drown.  After the first out and back I got into a grove.  The only scary part was was I going to hit anyone so I kept looking up.  When our 30 minutes was up it was time to practice transition.  I also noticed my Garmin as very off!  It told me I swam 1.3 miles, clearly that is very incorrect!

We ran out.  I attempted to strip my wetsuit.  That didn't work.  I may have almost had a breakdown right there and then.  I had a long sleeve on and it just wouldn't go past my elbows.  I had to sit down and pull this thing off me.  I had to take my watch off so I can get the other arm out.  I was a mess!  I cleaned my feet got all my stuff ready and was off to the bike.

The Bike

I had no idea how long or far we were biking, I assumed a few miles.. I was wrong.  I did 23.5 with one bottle of water.  I wish I brought some fuel with me.  I didn't know the route.  Luckily I just followed people and then got into a grove.  My teammates all caught up to me on the bike.  I am not the fastest biker out there.  There is lots of room for improvement in the future.  Because we were riding in heavy traffic, I was concerned about getting water from underneath so I pulled to the sidewalk to get water.  Any teammate that passed by made sure I was OK.  Coach Gene caught up to me, made sure I was ok.  This was about mile 6 and I asked how much further.  He said about 2 miles or so, no it was more like 6 more.  DAMN!!!  Teresa and him were waiting at the turn around and as soon as I made my way there Michelle was right behind us!  The way back I was a little quicker than the way there.  I also manages to bruise my ankle on the pedal.  At one of the bridge crossing I unclipped to cross the road.  The cars had the green light but the cross walkers did not, I tried to cross and a car came, because I was unclipped and trying to clip in quickly, my ankle went right into the pedal.  It is nice and cut up and bruised today.  Luckily I have only fallen off the bike once, while I was at the store but I have fallen onto or into the bike more times that I can remember and have the battle wounds to show for it.  I managed to ride 23.5 miles at a pace of 14mph.  I was pleased with that because we were on roads!  Once We were down, my butt was so happy to be done.  It was time to run.  I was not looking forward to that.  Quickly back to transition, but my bike away, got some water, ate about 1/4 of a bonk breaker and the run was about to begin.

The Run

At this point for the run I was beat.  I was hungry.  I hadn't eaten yet and didn't take fuel on the bike.  I got done just about the time Teresa was ready to run.  We decided we would run the bridge.  I had to use the restroom quickly and shortly followed behind.  I went up that bridge nice and slow and boy were my legs hurting from the ride.  Once up the bridge I ran about a third of a mile flat and up the bridge I went.  I had to play games with my mind to finish this run.  First I said, ok, 1.5 miles or 15 minutes, whichever comes first is when you can turn around.  Once I made it over the bridge the first time I actually felt OK.  Once over the bridge the second time my watch hit 20 minutes and new I could keep going.  Most people were doing a 30-60 mile run.  This was my fist time doing 1. an OWS and 2. a triple brick and didn't want to over do it.  I told myself run 10 minutes out and 10 minutes back and then you are good!  When I hit 30 minutes I started to chafe.  I started to chafe right where the butt cheek meets the leg on the left side.  Is it from the salt, new shorts, and running, is it the salt and biking?   Who knows!  On the way back I realized the faster I run the faster I am done.  I negative split the miles (minus the second bridge).  When I was done I was elated!  I finished my first triple brick, OWS, and felt confident with the miles put it!

I am just thrilled for the next few weeks.  This really gave me the boost I needed.  I was really nervous and doubting my ability to complete this event!

Also, thank you so much to those who have already donated to my fundraising efforts!  I am less than $350.00 from my first goal!!!  If you haven't, please take a minute to donate here.  Even something as little as $5.00 would mean so much to me!

THANK YOU for all the ongoing support!

Questions for you!!

Recommendations for chafing???

How the hell does one get their wetsuit off??

Struggling to get the wetsuit off

still struggling

breakdown about to start


  1. Good job Genna! You did awesome! -Michelle M.

  2. Oh that tricky wetsuit. Most of the "bigger event" triathlons have volunteers near the water exit. You simply lay down on your back and 2 volunteers peal off your suit. If this is not the case, allow water to be your friend. That means, while you are the water and finding your footing, start unzipping and removing the suit off your shoulders. The water will rush in around your waist and act as a lube down your legs. The 1st time you try it you will think NO BIGGIE. Congrats on practicing a tri. And does your coach help??? I see that he aided in the set up at your transition but what advice did he offer for the wetsuit removal over your elbows??? Last but not least, BREATHE!! No need to melt down, simple BREATHE. Keep It Up & You Are Awesome

  3. Way to go girlie - you're a braver gal than I am swimming PERIOD!

  4. Good for you!!! Keep up the good work!!! And yes, the breathing is important! :) You are doing amazing work--keep it up!

  5. You did great Genna! If you chafed from the bike shorts, just make sure they are tight enough. And put body glide/lube on everything!

  6. Good job Genna! Doing all three sports in a row is tough, and not knowing what distances you're going to be doing is tricky. You're going to do great at St. Anthony's!

  7. Umm, this post makes me exhausted! A triple brick? Holy cow, lady! You are amazing! I can't wait to see how it all comes together!

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