I’ve been telling people that Sunday I did my first triathlon, but that’s sort of misleading, because I was actually on a triathlon relay team, so as Tony points out, what I did was more of an athlon than anything else. The Cayuga Lake Triathlon was very cool. Lots of people, lots of freebies, and well-organized. I ran the running (anchor) leg on Team Minty Fresh Mice, and despite being inexperienced as a team, our individual performances were good enough to land us first place in the co-ed relays.
When I got my body-markings (a first, for me), the volunteer with the marker saw that I was on a relay team, glanced at my arms, and said “not the swimmer, huh?”.
One exciting part of all this is that this Sunday was the triathlon-sprint national championship race, so after winning we made the jump from “we won the relay”, to “we won the relay at the national championships”, and finally to “we are national champions”. Again, this is a bit misleading, because triathlons are not actually team races, so the elite competitors were not in the relay division. Still, we were very happy with the performance despite a few mishaps that I am still kicking myself over.
For example, I was trying to keep a vigilant watch for Eric, our cyclist, while waiting for his leg to end in the transition area. Sadly, when he finally arrived I had taken up a conversation with a nearby runner who was also in the relay. So I didn’t actually notice when Eric biked up behind me and started trying to get me to help him make the chip-transfer. I guess Eric was too exhausted to say anything too loud so he just gave up and transferred the velcro anklet to me himself. When I realized that Eric was grabbing my leg I jumped and helped him finish the job and then I was off, but I felt awful for wasting those precious seconds and for ignoring my exhausted teammate. Later, at the end of the race I passed a runner who passed me back in the final few meters of the course, and I couldn’t help but wonder how things may have been different if I had been paying attention in the transition.
Overall an awesome day, including an 18:58 5K. I would definetely do an athlon again.