If you haven’t heard me yammer on about the Velominati’s list of 91 Cycling Rules, well, where the hell have you been… training at altitude with Manny Huerta, perhaps? Seriously, consider yourself lucky; I’ve become barely bearable since a fellow blogger introduced me to The Rules. I enforce Rule #37 with gusto on group rides (sunglass arms go over helmet straps). When a fellow cyclist confessed he might buy a handlebar mirror after becoming a hit-and-run victim, he got my “speedy recovery” wishes as well as a copy of Rule #66 (mirrors are for wusses). I am diligently working to come into compliance with #s 83 (be self-sufficient) and 87 (be on time. Gasp. A mighty tall order for a chick whose father’s license plate is Mass tag # L-A-T-E. I swear it’s genetic.)
There are two notable exceptions to my Rule glee: I ignore all Rules that show disdain for my main man, and by “main man” I mean Lance Armstrong. (Rules 4, 27, and 51 all show thinly veiled Velominati vitriol; ergo, I refuse to provide links. Seek them out if you must but I will not assist.) And then there’s Rule #42, which was clearly made to be broken:
Rule #42: A bike race shall never be preceded with a swim and/or followed by a run. If it’s preceded with a swim and/or followed by a run, it is not called a bike race, it is called duathlon or a triathlon. Neither of which is a bike race. Also keep in mind that one should only swim in order to prevent drowning, and should only run if being chased. And even then, one should only run fast enough to prevent capture.
On Sunday, June 24th at the Cohasset Sprint Tri I was under no threat of either drowning or capture. My apologies to the Velominati: I had a fantastic time in flagrant violation of Rule #42.
Now, I love all races, but Cohasset falls into the super-special category since it attracts a crazy-competitive crowd and by that I mean the Cohasset Tri is this kind of popular:
Put it this way: to race Cohasset in June you’ve gotta be lightening fast the December prior and I don’t mean in the pool or on the roads I mean on-line; Cohasset 2012’s on-line registration sold out in 40 freaking minutes, making it the fastest sprint tri sell-out in North America for two years in a row. How’s that for fantastically fun? Here’s what the scene looks like:
What was my favorite part of this race?
I could say it was the swim…
And you would expect me to say the bike…
Or I could break from tradition, surprise you all and say the run was the very best split.
Or maybe I could say the best part was getting to meet a three-time Olympian and getting to shake his hand and tell him it was fun to watch him swim in Wave 1, which is precisely what I am doing in this photo:
Or I could say the best bit was standing on the podium next to Becky Padera, who in the event it isn’t clear I happen to think is absolutely great…(I had never met Tracy, #1, before this day, but Becky and I have raced several times and she is not just super-fast but super-nice).
Or I could say the best part was improving every split year-over-year:
|Swim||9:02 (2:03)||9:24 (2:08)|
|Bike (avg mph)||32:56 (21.9)||35:33 (20.25)|
|Run (mile pace)||25:00 (7:49)||25:14 (7:53)|
But the very best part was when all was said and done and I was back in the F 40-44 rack, collecting Skerritt (per usual, he lost his race-day bite and transformed from Viper back into Skerritt at some point during the awards ceremony. I guess it’s part of his cool-down or something.) A fellow F 40-44-er saw my medal and with wide eyes and a big smile congratulated me and said I must be super-fast. I thanked her and told her I had a blast, asked her how her race was.
“Well, I am not fast and I certainly did not win a medal!” she told me.
“I didn’t ask if you won,” I said. “I asked if you had fun!”
She went on to say she had a fantastic time and that she loves doing this, has done it every year. She said the best part for her was when we rode through the center of town, and she saw a chunky, lazy guy eating a burger and smoking a cigarette on a patio. “I thought, I am so glad I’m doing this and not that!” she said.
I thought that was absolutely fantastic and really, that’s what it’s all about: wanting something better for yourself and going out there and making it happen.
And with that, my 2012 season is half-way done, with five races down and five to go. Hard to believe!
As usual, thanks for stopping by. Perplex your coworkers by talking in kilometers (Rule #24), have a Rochefort (Rule #47) and don’t diss Lance (CJ Rule #1). Break all rules that are meant to be broken…and approach life like a pre-teen girl approaches the One Direction van. See ya’ll at the race!
[PS: Yes, this blog is a wee bit overdue. In the weeks after I raced Cohasset, I crashed my bike, said goodbye to my coach and directed my very first race. I’ve been a little preoccupied, to say the least…so cut me some slack! Better late than never, I say! 🙂 ]