Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Getting Over a DNF

I’m going to get back to my Evolution of a Training Plan series, but since I brought up the topic of my DNF, I felt like this was an important post to write.  I wasn’t blogging yet in October 2009, so I haven’t really told this story before, except in bits and pieces.

I found out I won a lottery entry into the Nike Women’s Marathon in late March, 2009.  It was like a dream come true.  This huge, exciting race with its famous Tiffany finisher’s necklace was going to be my very first marathon!  I built my base fitness, I raced in the spring and trained for most of the summer.

Training was much, much harder than I expected, for a lot of different reasons.  Mostly, the problem boiled down to the fact that I was trying too many new things and couldn’t figure out what was working for me and what wasn’t.  I had never intentionally run slow before.  I had never gone longer than 13 miles at a single stretch.  I had never tried to eat something before going for a long run and I had certainly never taken in fuel while running.  So when every single long run was plagued with tummy troubles, I didn’t know how to fix it.  Was it the brand of gel that made me queasy or was I not drinking enough water?  Maybe I was drinking too much water and not getting enough electrolytes.  Maybe it was just too hot.  Maybe this…maybe that…maybe none of the above.  Could it be that I was simply not capable of running long distances?  Race day came and I still didn’t know what my problem was, but I headed to the starting line, ready or not.

This marathon was a Really Big Deal for me.  My whole family was there, friends and family were tracking me on the internet and IronHubs was posting updates on Facebook.  I had big dreams and big goals and yeah, I had put some big pressure on myself.  You can imagine my consternation when, at Mile 5, I already felt like crap.  By Mile 10, I was fighting back tears and at Mile 13 I was puking on the side of the road.  I tried to fight it.  I walked some and ran some and threw up a LOT.  My day was ruined.  I felt like my life was ruined.  When I staggered into the Med Tent at Mile 20, I was pale and shaky and couldn’t even hold down the salt water they gave me.  So I quit.

To say that I was sad about the race would be a ridiculous understatement.  And I wasn’t just sad, I was embarrassed!  And disappointed.  And ashamed.  And angry – ugh! – I was bitterly angry at myself.  What a freakin’ loser I must be, quitting like that!  IronHubs was very sympathetic and comforting and kind, but he didn’t exactly disagree with me when I wondered out loud if I should have kept going.

In the days following my DNF, I turned to the internet for some comfort and confirmation that I wasn’t the worst, most horrible, awful quitter in the history of the world.  I read story after story of runners facing dehydration, being undertrained, getting injured or finding themselves mentally unprepared for the 26.2-mile challenge and I started to feel a little better.  I certainly wasn’t the only person who had ever DNF’d a race.

On the plus side, the only thing injured was my pride.  For the love of Pete, I wasn’t even sore!  By Tuesday, I had chosen my redemption race and it was just seven weeks away.  I trained for it and continued tweaking my fueling.  The morning of the race, I met up with a friend and decided on a whim to run with her.  I let go of anything resembling a time goal and just ran to finish.  My tough friend had stomach problems but kept chugging along like a champion.  We weren’t fast.  In fact, at one point, we were boosting ourselves up by saying, “At least that guy in the walker hasn’t passed us!”  And then the guy in the walker passed us.  Seriously.  Eventually, though, we saw the most beautiful sight in the world:

002I look pretty happy about finishing, don’t I?  I totally was.

You might think the story ends here, but it doesn’t.  I mean, I suppose I could leave it like this, with a nice happy ending.  Girl struggles and fails, then picks herself up and succeeds – yay, all better!  But, you know, real life isn’t all that simple.  Finishing another marathon wasn’t a magic cure-all, though it helped a LOT.  What truly helped me get over the DNF was time and perspective and, strangely, another failure.

Fast-forward three months:  I was fully trained and rarin’ to go for marathon #2.  (Or possibly #3, if you count the DNF.  Do you count the DNF?  That’s one of those race etiquette things that I’m never sure about.)  At the starting line I was off like a rocket.  At the halfway point I was on-pace for a BQ.  At Mile 15?  Houston, we have a problem.  Yep, the same problem.  I’m not going to lie, I was pissed!  And disappointed.  I called IronHubs and cried and he more or less told me to HTFU.  Ha, ha!  But I love him for that, because it was true.  I stayed on my feet and just kept moving forward.

Modesto Marathon 022Five hours and twenty-six minutes later I crossed the Finish Line.  Yes, I kissed the medal.  And apparently I was being filmed, though I have no idea for what.

I finished that stupid marathon and even though it wasn’t even close to the day I had hoped for, it clarified a few things for me:

  • I’m tougher than I think
  • I can finish what I start
  • It’s not the end of the world when things don’t go my way
  • There will be other races and maybe they will be awesome or maybe they will suck

Dream big, friends, and don’t be afraid to fail.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Evolution of a Training Plan, Part Two

When I wrote Part One of this bloggy mini-series, I really only envisioned it having two parts – the discussion of my very first training plan and then a dissection of my current one, sort of a “Then vs. Now” thing.  But as I cringed with embarrassment reminisced about my naïveté in those early years, I realized that there was a critical piece missing in between:  FAILURE.

Yep, I just dropped an ugly F-bomb.  My first few years of running were, in fact, spiced quite heavily with failure, from missing time goals, mojo-draining injuries, and a big fat DNF at my first marathon.  Looking back on it now, I can see that a lot of these problems were related to my training plans (or the lack thereof). 

Case(s) in point:

  • My first half-marathon.  I had the rather lofty goal of going sub-two hours, based on…well, nothing, really.  I hadn’t run that far before and I don’t have any record of using a training plan for that race.  Apparently, I felt that running five days a week with random distances that got progressively longer was going to carry me across the finish line at my then-5K pace. 

First Half 001Fail. 

BTW, I don’t for one second mean to imply that a 2:06 is a fail time-wise!  It was only a fail because I set a goal I couldn’t/didn’t achieve.

  • About a year and a half later, I set the goal to go sub-25 minutes at a 5K.  I printed out a training plan from Runner’s World and followed it about as religiously as I follow any training plan to a “T.”  This was my first introduction to speedwork and it was truly love at first run.  I saw paces that started with a 7 for the first time ever, but standing on the starting line I was still somehow plagued with doubts.

Davis Stampede 009My finish time?  25 minutes on the nose.  I missed my goal by One.  Effing.  Second.   FAIL.

  • That same year, 2009, I endured the mother of all failures – DNF.  Can I be honest?  It still hurts to write about this race!  There are so many hopes and dreams tied into your first marathon and to have that experience turn out so poorly is a bitter pill even years later.  Anyhoo, the plan.  I printed it out from Runner’s World and did exactly what it said, even though I didn’t like it.  Running slower than even my very slowest pace was hard for me.  Rather than filling me with confidence that I could spend that many hours on my feet, it sucked the will to run fast right out of me.  I followed all the conventional wisdom about pre-long run and mid-run fueling and spent all of my long runs chucking-up at the side of the road.  I never successfully completed a 20-miler.  Self-doubt was a constant companion during that training cycle.  The day of the race, non-stop barfing landed me in the med tent at Mile 20.

023I was smiling at the starting line, but ended the day with a whole lotta tears.

“My goodness, P,” you might be thinking to yourself right about now, “this is a really depressing post!”  Yeah, sorry about that.  But it has a happy ending, I promise!  Because here’s what I’ve learned from all those failures:

  • Failing at reaching a goal doesn’t make you (and by “you” I mean “me”) a failure.
  • When you fail once, you can either try again or re-adjust your goal.  Or both.
  • Better yet, you can re-adjust your goal, try again AND make some smart changes to your training and your plan!

Coming up next:  Part Three, where I put all that failure to work for me.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

The HIT IV–Photo Spectator Report

IronHubs competed in the TBF Racing Half Iron Triathlon today and, needless to say, completely ROCKED his race!  This was his second half-iron distance race – he did the HIT III last year with similarly spectacular results.  Here’s our day in pictures:

HIT IV 002Pre-race selfie from a strange angle.  I’m covered in sunblock, wearing our family team shirt, got my backpack full of snacks and cowbells, and have IronHubs’ wedding ring around my neck.  He says he’s afraid of losing it in the lake (he lost wedding ring #1 many, many years ago), but I suspect he’s  trying to pick up chicks in his sexy wetsuit.  “Hey, baby, swim here often?”

HIT IV 003Still dark when we left the house.  Don’t let those clouds fool you – it was already 60 degrees and climbing at 6 am.  Gonna be a hot one today!

HIT IV 009Racking his bike approximately five feet from the bike mount line – sa-weet!!

HIT IV 017It was a super small race, under 100 participants.  This was the “mass start.”

HIT IV 035The swim did not go well.  All the pics I took of IronHubs coming out of the water make him look angry and a little bit mean (which he totally is NOT), so here’s a pic in transition.  You can sort of see in the background that – *ahem* – there aren’t very many other bikes still there.  1.2 mile swim = 41:58, T1 = 1:57

HIT IV 042As he was leaving, I thought of all the times a crappy swim has lead me to a killer bike time and hoped IronHubs could harness his frustration and turn it into fuel for the ride.

HIT IV 053Which he totally did!!  His projected bike split was 2:55, but his actual time was 2:44!!!  He was probably something like 50th out of the water, but came in somewhere in the top 20 off the bike – woo hoo!

HIT IV 060T2 was lickety-split, under a minute!  It was in the mid- to high-80s at this point, but IronHubs has been doing lots of heat training this season, which paid off in spades today!

HIT IV 067The half-marathon is a two-loop course, so Big Boy and Little Boy got to give out high-fives at the halfway mark.

HIT IV 071It was hot, but he was smiling at the halfway point, on pace to finish near his A+ goal.

HIT IV 074I know I’ve mentioned it many times before, but this run course is brutal.  Hot, dusty, hilly and unforgiving.  And IronHubs got to run it TWICE.

HIT IV 083My new most favorite picture of IronHubs – the moment he saw the clock at the Finish Line and saw his 16 minute PR – 5:20:30!!!

HIT IV 105You can call him “Mr. Podium.”  4th place AG and 11th place OVERALL!  Oh, yeah, baby!

I’m unbelievably proud of this guy!

Also, a huge congrats to all my Hood to Coast girls – I’m loving all the updates and can’t wait to read complete race reports!!

And be safe out there if you’re getting a visit from Irene this weekend!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Evolution of a Training Plan, Part One

Let’s be clear about this from the very first sentence:  I am not an expert or a coach.  I make my own training plans because I have (sort of) figured out what I like and what works for me, but most of what I do doesn’t really fall into the category of conventional running wisdom.  This is the story of my very first training plan and you would be a damn fool to follow any of it!

Once upon a time, about five years ago, I started running.  And pretty much as soon as I could run two consecutive miles, I decided to enter a race.  Running just for fun and weight loss didn’t really float my boat; I wanted to get out there and compete!  Without a finish line waiting for me, there was no real purpose in hitting the streets.  Trust me, I had no illusions of being fast or even good at running, I’m just a really goal-driven girl.

I ran my first “mile” (okay, it was really only about a half-mile, but at the time – before I mapped things on USATF, before I had a Nike+ and waaaaaaay before I owned a Garmin – I thought it was a mile.  It felt like ten miles, but that might have been the extra 30 pounds I was lugging around) on September 14, 2006.  I launched immediately into “running” five days a week.  I have to put it in quotes.  I have to.  Here’s the mental picture for you:  I was wearing a pair of sweatpants from Walmart, a free T-shirt from the ASPCA, sneakers from Payless Shoe Source and trudging along on the sidewalks staring at my feet and wondering if I could literally die from running so hard.  That deserves quote marks, you can’t deny it.

By early 2007, I had stepped things up a little, buying my first pair of running shoes and a few pieces of wicking clothing.  I could run two miles (which, as it turned out, wasn’t really two miles at all, but whatever) a few days a week and I was thinking about stretching it out to three miles, but I wasn’t sure if I could spend that much time away from the house in the mornings (even Big Boy was still pretty little back then).  In February, I started kicking around the idea of entering a race.  IronHubs and I decided to run the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5K in May, but the ink had barely dried on the entry form before I wanted more.  By late March I was up to 3- and 4-mile runs and IronHubs felt the lure of the race as keenly as I did, so we decided to go straight for the big time:  The Bay to Breakers.

Did we have any idea at all what were doing?  No.  Not even a little bit.  Did that stop me?  Of course not!  Apparently, it did not occur to me to find a training plan on the internet, which seems pretty silly in retrospect, but I don’t think we even subscribed to Runner’s World yet, so what did I know?  In early April, I sat down at the computer and scratched out my very first training plan.

I was so excited about my plan, I blogged about it on Myspace (OMG, remember Myspace??  All I ever blogged about was running, go figure).  I apparently still have a profile there, because I just now logged in for the first time in almost three years so that I could share with you my scintillating blog post from April 5, 2007:

Setting Goals

Current mood:  Determined

A few months ago, these crazy words crossed my lips: "I'm going to run the Bay to Breakers this year." Seemed like a good idea at the time, I was pretty serious but vague about it. In February, I mentioned to my mom and my sister (who I usually WALK the B-2-B with) that I'm thinking about running this year. They both took me at my word and started talking about it like a done deal.

So, now it's six weeks until the big day and I've realized that I better get my butt cracking if I'm really going to do this. I've been running regularly since last September and do about four miles most days, but the B-2-B is over seven miles and it has a big ass hill in the middle of mile 2 - yikes!

This is the part of the story where you get a little peek at exactly how anal I can be: I sat down at the computer last night and made up a calendar of the days between now and May 20th and figured out exactly which days I'll run and how many miles I'll go and which course I'll take (because I have to get some hill training in there, too).

This is starting to seem like sort of a big deal now. I'm really gonna do it!

2008 Bay to Breakers Training Plan

Check me out, running 20 mile weeks back in the day. I don’t even do that now.

There are a few things that stand out to me about this training plan:

  • All the distances are preceded by the “~” symbol, so I must have figured out by that point that my distances weren’t even close to what I thought exact.
  • Damn, I ran a lot!  Mileage-wise and five-days-a-week-wise.
  • This was before I knew what cross-training was – check out all those days that just say “off.” 
  • Or tapering.  Seriously, I ran three days in a row before the race?
  • It’s so cute that the week starts with Sunday.  I made this plan in Publisher with a real calendar.
  • There is no mention whatsoever of the Susan G. Komen race, which was May 12th that year.  Thus beginning a long line of training plans that did not get followed in their entirety!
  • As far as I can tell, there is absolutely no rhyme or reason behind this plan.  The dominant theme seems to be “Don’t run the same distance two days in a row.”  Solid thinking.
  • There also doesn’t seem to be a real goal for this race, other than finishing.  I don’t remember aiming for a certain time, but –being me – I’m sure I had something in mind that didn’t make it onto paper.
  • I totally remember hanging this plan on the refrigerator and feeling like a real runner.  Crossing off the day’s workout still holds as much satisfaction for me today as it did back then.
  • I don’t recall spending any time at all doing post-race analysis of the plan.  I got to the finish line, so it must’ve been okay, right?

Bay to Breakers! 02

Coming soon:  Part Two – Learning to Plan my Work and Work my Plan

Friday, August 19, 2011

Am I Average?

Well, of course I am, it’s right there in the title of my blog!  Many of you probably saw Darlene’s post earlier this week – I was so intrigued by it, I decided to steal it.  Ha, ha!  Actually, I hope you will, too, I’d love to see your responses.

I did not include the male profile here, but you can find it if you follow the website link.  According to Running USA ( The following female and male runner snapshots represent “core runners”, that is, active adult participants who tend to enter running events, train year-round, and purchase 2-4 running shoes each year.:

Average Age: 38.5 – I passed that a few years ago!
63.2% Married  - Yep
78.2% College educated -  Yes, with a degree I don’t use
70.3% Earn a household income of $75,000+ – It’s not really saying much in today’s economy, but yes, somebody in our house makes this much money.  Hint – it’s not me

Running History:
Average number of years running: 9.9 years  - Not quite, but I’m coming up on five years next month
Average number of running events participated in during the last 12 months: 7.2 events  - Hmm, running only? I’d say less than that for me.  But average number of races is somewhere around 8 – 10 per year.
51.8% have completed 1 marathon or more in their lifetime – Woo hoo – training for number 6 right now!

Running Routine:
70.4% Run 4+ hours each week – No, not until peak marathon training.  But I do a LOT of cross-training, so if we’re counting how many hours of exercise per week I’m way over four.
77.7% run 12 months a year -  Fer sher.  There is no off-season!
Average number of days run per week: 4.0 – Not usually.  I prefer to run just three days, but my current training plan has four days a week.  We’ll see how that works out for me.
Average number of miles run per week: 21.9 – Any other year besides this (injury-recovery) year, that would be true.  I’m working my way back up to 20 mile weeks right now.
66.1% describe themselves as ‘Frequent/Fitness Runners’ – Absolutely!

Running Preferences:
Favorite race distance is the Half-Marathon (39.0%)  - I’m not really sure if I have a favorite distance.  I like to race halfs, but I really like to train for fulls.  And nothing feels better than busting out a fast 5K.  Can I say “All of the Above”??
Interested in entering next year: – Most years I do at least one of each.  So, again, I’ll go with “All of the Above.”
    Half-Marathon (77.0%)
    5K (57.3%)
    10K (56.0%)
    Marathon (43.3%)

Primary motivation to start running:
    For Exercise (25.0%) – Sort of.
    Weight Concerns (14.5%) – This was definitely my main goal.
    Needed a New Challenge (9.3%) – I didn’t use to think I liked challenges.  Isn’t that funny??
Motivation to continue to run: I notice “Training for a PR” isn’t on this list, but it would be my first choice.
    Staying in Shape (76.8%) - Yes
    Staying Healthy (74.2%)  - Yes
    Relieving Stress (64.4%)  - Yes
Product Preferences:
Average number of running shoes purchased in last 12 months: 2.9 pairs  - Just two for me – a pair of Newtons and a pair of Vibrams
Last running shoes purchased:
        ASICS (26.4%)  - I’ve never worn Asics
        Brooks (16.6%)  - I’ve never worn Brooks, though IronHubs is a devoted fan
        Saucony (14.2%) – I had one pair one time and they were the heaviest shoes I’ve ever worn

65.3% spent $90+ on their running shoes –Yes, and sometimes a whole lot more!
47.9% purchased their running shoes at a specialty running store – Yes, I love shopping at FleetFeet!
Favorite brands of running apparel:  My two favorite brands, RunningSkirts and SkirtSports, didn’t make this list.  Bummer.
    Nike (64.8%) – I have a few things, a pair of capris and some shorts
    Under Armour (45.7%) – I’ve never bought UA brand, I don’t like the way it fits me
    Champion (34.3%) – I have several C9 by Champion things from Target – can’t beat the price!
    Adidas (30.7%) – I think I have one or two Adidas shirts
80.4% spent $100+ on running apparel in the last 12 months – I refuse to answer this question on the grounds that I might incriminate myself…
59.6% purchased running apparel at a specialty running store – I buy some stuff at Sports Chalet (because it’s close to my house), but most of my purchases are online, usually from Runningwarehouse.

Average Weight: 137.6 lbs – Way less
Average Height: 65.01 inches – I’m a little taller, maybe an inch.  If I’m standing up really, really straight.
Average Body Mass Index (BMI): 22.9 - Less 
40.9% are content with their weight – I’m very happy with my weight.
42.3% are content with their fitness level – What’s that saying, “happy but not satisfied”?  My fitness level is terrific, but I’m always reaching for more.

Well, there you have it, bloggy friends!  It looks like I’m just about as average as the next person.  How average are YOU??

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

OMG, speedwork!!

I just looked it up (reason number millionty-five that I love having a blog – I can check back on old workouts and paces), and the last time I did speedwork was December 23, 2010.  Dude, seriously?  I love speedwork.  It’s arguably my favorite workout in the world, but I guess that says something about my long, slow injury recovery plan this year.

In any event, speedwork is back on the training plan, and YAY for that!

Tuesday Workout 002Is there any better feeling in the world than crossing off a great workout?

Reading that post from December made me feel pretty darn good about my run this morning.  No, I’m not quite as fast as I was eight months ago, but to be anywhere in the ballpark of that level of fitness (that old workout was just three weeks post-CIM, probably the fittest I’ve ever been) makes me really happy.  I’m super pleased with my all-around negative splits – meaning my rest periods got faster and my speed portions got faster:

Speedwork ScreenshotIf only all runs could be this awesome, right?

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Day One…

Done!  Oh, how I love the start of a new training plan!!  Ordinarily, this would mean a rest day for me.  Mondays are always rest days, but not this cycle.  I mentioned that I was changing things up this time, so now Monday is a run day.

Training Day 1 018“Easy 2” – done!

Today is also the first day of school for Big Boy, who is starting 8th grade!  I have no idea where the time went, since I’m pretty sure it was just yesterday that I sent him to Kindergarten: 

First Day of SchoolThen and Now

I know the middle of August still seems awfully early to start school, but that’s what we call “traditional” schedule around here.  Little Boy’s elementary school is on a year-round schedule, which started in July!

We spent the weekend squeezing in a little more summer fun, including taking the kayak out on a nearby lake.  Big Boy and Little Boy went out for a solo excursion while I stood nervously happily on the shore:

Funny story:  I was wearing my Vibrams, of course, because they’re perfect for everything, including a day of kayaking.  While I was standing partially in the water, waiting for the boys to come back in, a few fellow kayakers were talking about my shoes as though I wasn’t standing just five feet from them.  “Oh, look at her shoes!”  “Yeah, they look like those Vibram Fives.”  “I’ve heard you can even run in them.”  “Huh.  Crazy!”

How was your weekend??

Friday, August 12, 2011

Friday Five-a-rooni

Number 1.  Everything sounds more fun and festive with “a-rooni” attached to it.  It’s a fact, try it.  “What are you doing today?”  “Getting a root canal-a-rooni.”  See?

Number 2.  I’m still recovering from last week’s race (and still eating like I’m training for the half-iron I did in May.  Duh.), as evidenced by the slow, slogging ride I had this morning and the barely one-mile run I managed yesterday.  No matter.  I’m going to spend the rest of this week taking it easy because – insert dramatic and exciting music here *dun-da-da-DUN!!** -

Number 3.  MARATHON TRAINING STARTS MONDAY!!  Yes, I know lots of you are well into the double-digits-and-ice-baths phase of your training already, but my “fall” marathon isn’t until December.  Yes, indeedy, I will be running the California International Marathon again this year.  I’m SO excited!  Much as I enjoy run-cations (and hope to someday take a little trip in April), there is nothing like being able to train on the race course like I can for the CIM.

Number 4.  My marathon training plan is almost complete.  I’m still noodling out which tune-up races I want to do, but the bones are there.  This plan is entirely different than anything I’ve done before, and combines the parts I liked best from previous plans plus a new (for me) approach.  I have more than the usual amount of excitement about getting started with it and I’ll post more details next week about the hows and whys of the plan.

CIM Training Plan 001Double-checking my resources and working on the chicken-scratch version before I put in in the computer, print it out and post it prominently on my refrigerator.

Number 5.  I won, I won, I won!!  This week’s RLAM Hump-Day Giveaway was something I couldn’t resist – food! – and I actually won!  I’ll be getting a box of ProBars and a box of HALO bars, making me feel like the luckiest girl in the world.  I can’t wait to try them, and I’ll be sure to let you guys know what I think of ‘em.

HALO-SmoresPretty sure my review is going to go like this:  nom, nom, nom.

Happy Friday – what five things are on YOUR mind today???

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL Spectator Report

This was one heck of a weekend for the P family.  No sooner had the dust cleared on my final duathlon of the summer than we were back at Rancho Seco for two more races – Little Boy competed in the TRI for KIDS series championships and IronHubs did the TRI for REAL Olympic distance.  In all my excitement, I ended up taking like a bajillion photos of the day, but I’ve pared it down for you (though it might not seem like it)!  First up, Little Boy, who was racing for the first time as an 11-year old (which meant his swim was 3x as long as it was just last month as a 10-year old).  150 yard swim, 4 mile bike, 1 mile run.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 008Ready to rock and roll.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 013The traditional calf photo.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 040“The Blender” swim start.  If you’re interested, you can pick out Little Boy right in the middle of the photo, wearing red goggles.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 047Swim time: 2 minutes, 38 seconds, T1:  1 minute, 30 seconds (which is faster than any transition I’ve ever done!)

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 058Let’s go for a ride!

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 072Just 15 minutes and 48 seconds later, Little Boy is done with the bike leg.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 082His T2 was only 30 seconds!!

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 090Sprinting to the finish…

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 100Giving it everything he’s got…

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 106DONE!!  One mile run time:  6 minutes, 48 seconds.  Total time:  27 minutes, 4 seconds!!

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 108“That was HARD!!”

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 110IronHubs was just about to get into the water, but of course he had time to congratulate Little Boy.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 1612nd Place AG!!  First Place was ONE SECOND faster, Third Place was two seconds slower – now that is some fierce competition!

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 173For kids who competed in all three races of the series, they totaled finishing placements and awarded the title of Series Champion to the top finisher in each AG.  Little Boy won!!!

As if one awesome race wasn’t enough excitement for the day, IronHubs was off on his Olympic-distance adventure just moments after Little Boy crossed the finish line:

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 022IronHubs’ bib number was double lucky!

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 030Calf pic!  Yes, seriously, we take this picture every. single. time.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 116Easily my favorite photo of the day.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 132Swim Time – 29:50

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 144Running out for his bike ride.  The racks are never that full when I get out of the water…

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 195Sweet flying dismount!  Official results include T1 time plus bike time – 1:08:56.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 215Leaving T2 running strong and looking determined!

This video does a nice job capturing just how hot, dusty and desolate the run course is.  Plus, it shows IronHubs passing another guy.  Run time plus T2 time – 40:58.

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 241Finish Time – 2:19:44!!  Just a little off his PR time, but good enough for 24th place OVERALL and…

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 263Third Place AG!!!

TRI for KIDS and TRI for REAL 255It’s not real until you post it on the internet!