I've just recently started looking into duathlons. About a month ago I found one that was a sprint distance on mountain bike trails. I tentatively drove up this morning, not sure how I was going to do, especially nervous about how fast the times from last year were. I know I shouldn't care about my time but if I'm honest, there is a small part of that doesn't want to be dead last. But someone's gotta be right?
We had lots of rain yesterday and I thought they might cancel the race. Nope, on a scheduled!! My dad and I drove up there in chilly and windy weather. (The rain brought in a cold front.) We got my bike set up in the transition area, attended the pre-race meeting, and walked down to the starting line. The race director yells, "Go!" and within 30 seconds, I was the last runner. But once I got on the trails, I didn't care. I was loving the temps (once I warmed up!) The sun was shining through yellow and orange leaves and it was so beautiful!! I was reminded that I just LOVE being on trails, whether I'm running, biking, or backpacking. The 1st run was a 5k on a loop that we would do again during some of the bike portion. I started hearing a bike behind me and I was thinking, "Surely no one's finished and already lapping me!?" I turned to look and the guy says, "You're fine, I'm just the sweeper." Further reiteration that I was last. But I promised myself I would run my own race, so I continued to go at my pace. I felt great on the mountain biking leg, 16k of single track with only short uphill climbs and I began to catch up to people. I was still one of the last people into the transition area to switch back to running, but I was also still grinning. I was having so much fun and felt a little like a bad ass, since I wasn't totally sure that I could do it. I finished strong and ended up being 2nd female in my age group!! HA! I've already looked up the next one that I want to do. I think this is just the kick in the butt my training needed.