Monday, June 14, 2010

Naperville Triathon Race Report

Sunday, June 13, 2010 was the U.S. Women's Triathlon Series in Naperville, Illinois. It is a sprint triathlon. We swam 1/2 mile, biked 14.2 miles and ran a 5k, which is 3.1 miles. I woke up a little late and felt a little rushed in the morning, but was off and running and felt fine once I got to Dars. We arrived in tranistion with about 45 minutes to get set up.

Here I am in Transition getting my bike on the rack. It was little chilly when we first got there, but I was warm by the time I set up my tranistion area, so I was able to take off the sweat shirt and just head down to the water in my tri suit.

Here I am by my bike in tranistion after I was all ready to go. Check out my new tri suit. Wahoooo!! Looking good.

Here I am with Darlene. She is the one who got me into triathlons back in 2006. In 2005 I was at a fitness camp and they challenged us to do a race of some sort in 2006 to keep us motivated through the year. I called Dar and told her about that, she called me back and told me that she read about triathlons, I thought she was nuts, but said, "why not?" We did our first Sprint Tri in Naperville in 2006. This triathlon marks #5 for both of us.

Here I am with my great friend Michelle. We met through our blogs years ago. We both were into Triathlons. She has done this tri before, but couldn't this year, but she volunteered and was there for me all day, cheering me on. She loaned me her wetsuit, but I didn't have to use it because the water was warm enough. Michelle, thanks for all the hugs and smiles along the way. They kept me going.

Here is the swim start. Darlene and I were in wave 15. It didn't start until 7:56 even though the race started at 7am. It was a cloudy day, warm, but not hot, perfect conditions for a triathlon. We were a little worried about rain or as forcasted earlier in the week, low 80's and humid. It had rained the night before cooling off the temps. We couldn't have asked for better weather.

Once we get to the swim start and wait for our wave Dar and I have a little fun posing for pictures and creating our own body markings. Here I am posing by a tree showing off the new me in my new tri suit.

Dar and I always write fun things on our legs to encourage others. This year we wrote how much weight we have lost. Darlene has lost 50 pounds and I have lost almost 100 pounds. I could really tell the difference in my performance without the extra weight. It was amazing.

I really like this picture. Words cannot begin to describe how proud I am of myself. We got in line with our wave and kept moving up in the water. I was able to talk to the guy on the Mic and he had annouced how much weight Darlene and I had lost and wish Darlene a Happy Birthday. I was not nervous at all this time. The swim is the hardest part for me and usually I am a nervous wreck. I really was at peace when he told us to go. The swim start was a little rough, got hit a couple times, hit a couple people,but the time had come for me to get this done and finish strong. My swim was great. I felt strong. I did freestyle the whole time. My first triathlon ever in 2006, I freestyled, back stroked, doggy paddled, had a panick attack, and side stroked my way to the swim finish. This time I free styled the whole way and never panicked once. I almost cried getting out of the water it was so great. I have done this race 3 times before. My best swim time ever before today was 21:27. This year I did the swim in 18:25. Yay me!!!! I guess all those flip turns paid off.

After the swim I headed into Tranistion 1 to change for the bike. My friend Michelle was working the first aid station and snapped this picture of me heading into Tranistion. Since I had a tri suit on that I would wear the whole race all I had to do was get socks and shoes on and my helmet, then get out of there. From the end of the swim to the tranisition area is about 1/4 of a mile long. In previous years I walked that, this year, I ran. Booyah. Best tranistion 1 time in the past was 7:30, this year 5:56.

This picture is of me after the bike heading in to transition to the run. I felt really strong on the bike and even had fun cheering on my fellow bikers, telling them how sexy they all looked in spandex. It was fun and it was nice to see that I made people smile. My best bike from years past was 57:47, this year I did it in 54:07. I need to get stronger on my bike, but am very proud of the improvement.

This is me with the kids right before heading into tranistion. I didn't get to see them before the race, so this was my first time seeing them. They are the reason I started this healthy journey and I love that they can come out and see me race. I love them soooo much.

Here I am runnning my bike into the transition area. You are not allowed to ride your bike in the transition area, so there is an area where you have to dismount your bike. Keith caught this picture of me on my way in.

Normally I would not like to have a butt shot of me, but I am so excited by this picture because of just how good my butt looks and in spandex to boot.

After biking I headed into my second tranistion and headed out on the run. I felt very strong on the run. I was determined not to walk any of it and I didn't. I pushed hard to the point, when people would tell me good job I couldn't even answer. I would have to do a head nod or a wave, so they knew I acknowledged them. My mantra became, "You can rest at the finish line." I would repeat that to the beat of my running. As I was running I would start to think of how far I had come and would start to tear up, so I would stop thinking about it. I started hunting half way through the run. I would zero in on my prey and hunt them down until I passed them. It was great. This was the best I have ever felt on a run and my time showed it. My best time from previous years was 55:53 and this year, DRUM ROLL PLEASE, I did the run in 38:39. This is just AMAZING because I have NEVER done a 5k in under 45 minutes. NOW THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT!! This picture is of me almost done with my run heading into the finish line.

The path was lined with spectators cheering us on and here I am just around the corner from the finish line.

Parker met me at the finisher's chute and ran in with me. This was a great moment for me to run with him. He and Tricia are why I am doing this and to have him running at my side was great.

When I crossed the finish line I was greeted by Darlene giving me my medal. It was very emotional as we both have overcome so much to get where we are today. I am so happy that Keith kept snapping away. These are pictures I will cherish for a long time. Dar and I both cried at our HUGE accomplishments and it will be a moment I never forget.

I was in tears at this point. I knew at this point I had shaved about 30 minutes off my PR. In reality it was 27 minutes. Isn't that amazing? Oh yeah it is. :-)

I love this shot of the finish line. Can you find me and Darlene?

And here is the reason we race, THE BLING!!

After the race with the kids. I loved Tricia's hat and let me tell you, that made it so much easier to find them in the crowd.

Tricia and Parker I love you so much. Thanks for coming out to the race and cheering me on. I could not do this without your smiling faces in the crowd and your cheers. I love you both so much and you mean the world to me.

The sweet, sweet, family shot.

Me and my honey. Thanks for everything. I love you so much and apprecite your support and encouragement on my journey. Thanks for all the hours I am able to work out and go the gym and thank for accepting the fact that I am part of this crazy thing we call Triathlon. Even when you don't get it, you accept it, and love me through it all and that's all someone can ask for.

My cool babe!!

Check out Tricia's glasses. Who do you see?

This is me after the race calling a few of my friends to let them know how bananas my triathlon was. Don't you think my phone is quite appealing?

This is a lady named Melinda, but her friends call her Millie. We met on the bike. I slowed down and talked to her for a few seconds. She is on an amazing journey herself and has lost 65 pounds already. This is a picture of her crossing the finish line. This was her first triathlon and I am so proud of her. Millie, way to go and way to kick my butt on the swim. She did the swim in 16 minutes.

Here we are after the race showing off our bling.

This race was an amazing race for me. I could tell how much stronger I have become and I really look forward to future races as I continue to lose more weight and become more and more stronger. I really want to take a minute to thank my coach, Bob Mitera, of Kokua Multisports. Bob, I know I do all the work, but if I didn't have you coaching me along I wouldn't be where I am today. I appreicate all you do for me. I appreciate all the time you spend creating my workouts, talking to me on the phone, meeting me at the park to workout and you know what means a lot to me, when you do the workouts with me. You are a great person, a great coach, and a great friend. Thanks.

Another cool thing about this race is that my number was 150 and that is my goal weight. I'm on my way.

Here are my official times for the U.S. Women's Triathlon Series 2010:

Swim: 18:25
Bike: 54:07
T2: 3:06
Run: 38:39
Total time: 2:00:11


Duane said...

Awesome job! Great pics too! And tell Millie I want to talk to her!

Molly said...

Congratulations on crushing your old times!!!! You are making so much progress and you deserve to be proud!

rebecca hallin said...

great job! this same triahtlon is coming to Federal Way WA right where i live! I signed up to volunteer for it! I am hoping next year if it is still coming to our area that I will participate in it. I am still looking for a job out here so funds are tight this year. I do have a half marathon in Aug it will be my first half marathon here in my new home area.

Bob Mitera said...

Very nice job Melissa. Athletes like you are a pleasure to see succeed.

Anonymous said...

Mellisa, You were just awesome! I loved all the photos and copied many of them to my computer for inspriation for myself. Millie was wonderful too. Hey, I do have to say you look great in your triathlon suit....and the butt shot wasn't bad either. Your kids and your 'honey' look so sweet there with you and the finish with Parker was just too much, made me tear up. Great memories from a most inspiring woman. Thank you.
Iron Sherpa in Texas - Pat

The Tubby Triathlete said...

Awww! I Made your blog! :) I'm so excited! I feel like a celebrity!

YOU m'dear are a ROCKSTAR! I'm sooo impressed you ran the whole run! :)

M said...


I mean - seriously - all the times are AMAZING!! You killed this race! What a fantastic race report!

Siren said...

This post made me cry, right about when I read you RAN THE WHOLE RUN! You forgot to tell me that on race day! OMG woman, you rocked a new 5K PR at the end of a tri?! That is so rock star I can't stand it!!

Shelley Moore said...

I am just amazed and inspired! WIll definitely be watching your blog!