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Baldwin Park Triathlon

by Meghann on May 23, 2010

I did it! My second sprint triathlon is done and done! :)

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For a moment this morning I was scared it wasn’t going to happen.

I way underestimated how much time it would take me to get to the triathlon site as well as how much time I needed to set up once I was there. I learned a very important lesson: make sure to arrive at the site at least 1 hour pre-triathlon for all future events. Lesson learned!

I woke up at 5:45 (the race started at 7:00!) and quickly shoved an arnold’s thin with almond butter and fresh berries into my mouth.

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Derek and I then bolted to Baldwin Park where I quickly grabbed my packet and headed to set up the transition area.

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I only had about 10 minutes before the first wave was set to start and the guy with the bull horn kept yelling at me to hurry up! Talk about stress!

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Luckily I was in the FOURTH wave so once we got to the water I had a moment to chill and relax.

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The best part of any triathlon is being marked up. Every person I passed – or any person who passed me – I automatically checked their leg for race and age to see if they were direct competition. I think being marked up should be a requirement for every race event! :)

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I lined up with the other pink caps and watched the first three waves of males take off.

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Before I knew it, it was our turn to head into the water.

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The water was disgusting! It was bath water warm and full of seaweed. Yuck!

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After a 30 second countdown the whistle blew and a few dozen pink heads took off.

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I started off feeling confident in the water, but once the whistle blew all of that confidence evaporated.

I was kicked immediately in both my right and left shoulder and I could feel people grabbing at my legs. All of a sudden I was claustrophobic and I knew I needed to get out of the crowd. Seaweed plus what felt like a million other girls trying to get past me was not a good combination. I held back, caught my breath and gave the pack a 30 second head start before taking off with the thinned out pack in the back.

Giving the other girls a head start was the best decision I could have made during the race. I felt much better in the back and no longer fearing the wrath of the other swimmers gave me a chance to relax. I was now swimming this race on my terms. :)

I pulled through the .75 kilometer swim by taking it a buoy at a time. Once I hit the first buoy I gave myself a mental pat on the back for being a third of the way done. One I made it to the second buoy I gave myself another pat for being two thirds. All of a sudden I could see the blue flags and it was time for the first transition!

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Swim distance = .75 km Official time = 15:57

Thank god the swim is the first part of triathlons, I think I would drown if it was last!

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Run to Transition Time = 00:05

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I tried to keep it simple during transition.

I laid my socks out next to my shoes and decided to tackle putting those on first. Then I grabbed the Garmin ( Derek let me borrow his for the race), number belt, and helmet. I debated putting the shirt on I had brought, but decided putting a dry shirt over my wet body would take way to much effort.

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First transition time = 02:24

I felt fast as soon as I got on the bike, but others were much faster.

The bike course consisted of 5 loops around Lake Baldwin, which means when I was taking off on my first lap many of the males were on their 3rd or 4th! I hugged the right side of the road and let the speed demons pass me without any fight.

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I stuck to my guns and instead of worrying about the really fast males passed me, I concentrated on my form and my own abilities. This was a race with myself, no one else.

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Having to do five laps of a course I know like the back of my hand may not be the most exciting part of the race, but at least it gave me a chance to ride by family of spectators along the course.

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Hi Family!

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Bye Family!

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The funny part is when I first took off on the bike I didn’t know we were suppose to do 5 loops of the lake. It wasn’t until the 3rd lap that I heard someone yell something about it being 5 laps. Perhaps if I wasn’t let I would have picked up on that important piece of info before hand. ;) Oh well.

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At the end of my fifth lap I entered the transition area.

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Bike Distance = 13.4 mile Time = 49:11

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The second transition was easy. All I did was put my bike up, throw the helmet off, and took off!

Second transition time = 00:28

I love how they save my favorite part of any triathlon for last – the run!

The run is where I’m strong and the run was where I knew I would make up some ground. All I had to do was 2.7 miles. 2.7 miles? That’s nothing. I had this in the bag!

My goal was to maintain 8:00 min/ miles and I am happy to say I stayed right around that range. I planned to finish strong and that I did. I had no problem letting my competition pass me in the swim or on the bike, but the run Heck no! The run was all mine! :)

I started checking legs and seeking out any females with the ages 25-29 on their leg. These ladies were my direct competition and if I was secretly planning to place in my age group (I was) these ladies had to go down. I found my first girl with a 26 and passed her with ease. I found the second girl with a 27 on her leg, but she put up a little fight. I believe the words ‘oh, hell no’ escaped from her lips (said in a joking spirited voice of course ;) ) as I ran by.

No one passed me on the run, but I did manage to pass quite a few runners. I felt awesome. :) The 2.7 miles flew by, I could have easily done 10 more!

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I finished the run strong with a smile on my face. :)

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Run Distance = 2.7 miles Time = 21:11 <— the fastest run time in my age group!

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Official Finish Time = 1:29:29

3rd Place Female in 25 – 29 Age Group! :)

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Considering the bike portion of the race was a full mile longer than my first triathlon I more than smashed my time goal!!! I was a happy girl this morning! :)

Two sprint triathlons down! Now it’s time to start thinking about that olympic distance and then perhaps a half ironman? ;)

Lots of thanks to my trio of spectators!

Derek, Dad, and Maddie!

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Maddie was a super cheerer! She always jumped for joy when I rode by. :)

We skipped the awards ceremony – of course now that I know I actually earned an award I’m kicking myself for that – and headed to my FAVORITE breakfast spot to celebrate.

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Briar Patch has hands down the BEST pancakes out there, but since I just had pancakes yesterday I decided to order the Pear and Gorgonzola Egg White omelet with fresh fruit and dry wheat toast.

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The pear and gorgonzola omelet was ummm… interesting. These flavors work well together in salad form, but their not quite omelet material.

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Maddie had a BIG morning of spectating and could barely keep her eyes open at breakfast!

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“Take me home. I need sleep!”

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I need sleep too!

Another day, another race, another personal victory. :)

Rock on!

{ 80 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jenny May 23, 2010 at 12:44 pm

Congrats on your accomplishments! You did amazing… Except a pear, gorgonzola and egg whites? Crazy combo choice, lady! Works much better on a salad:)

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2 Freya @ Brit Chick Runs May 23, 2010 at 12:45 pm

Waaay well done!! Awesome recap, awesome race and awesome result, you must be thrilled!! Gosh, reading this totally makes me want to do one :P
Have a great day, you deserve it!

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3 Nicole @ Geek Turned Athlete May 23, 2010 at 12:45 pm

Good job!!! You are so ready for a half ironman! I wish that we could train together. We are about the same paces!!

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4 Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope May 23, 2010 at 12:48 pm

Congratulations!! I am training for my first sprint tri (and first race of any kind…ever), which is in August and I have one in September, too. I am getting sooo nervous just thinking about it, especially the swim. aaah. i know i just have to keep training so i’m prepared, but damn.
You did awesome!

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5 Lexie May 23, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Congrats Meghann! I love how Maddie went to the race!

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6 Andrea @ Run, Eat, Date, Sleep May 23, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Congratulations! You did awesome!

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7 Sana May 23, 2010 at 12:52 pm

CONGRATSSS!!!

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8 Allie May 23, 2010 at 12:53 pm

great race!!

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9 Alison May 23, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Congratulations!! What a great accomplishment. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday.

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10 Evan Thomas May 23, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Congrats! I Think just finishing is amazing but getting 3rd?! Amazing!

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11 sunnytropic May 23, 2010 at 1:03 pm

Great job! Is that a Lululemon Not So Deep V bra you were sporting? Love them!

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12 kirsten May 23, 2010 at 1:07 pm

congrats lady! :)

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13 Jenna May 23, 2010 at 1:12 pm

Congrats Meghann! Bring on the next, bigger and better event, eh? Aww, Maddie looks so proud of her mom! Too cute.

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14 biz319 May 23, 2010 at 1:12 pm

I made pancakes and spent an hour reading the Sunday paper – ha! :D

GREAT JOB! Congrats on 3rd in your age group too!

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15 Julia May 23, 2010 at 1:13 pm

You are SO amazing (I hope you know this!)

Maybe someday I could do this. . . maybe.

Julia
http;//jewliagoulia.blogspot.com

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16 Allie (Live Laugh Eat) May 23, 2010 at 1:18 pm

I was out of breath just READING your post!! Congrats! I love the reaction of that woman :)

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17 Katherine: What About Summer? May 23, 2010 at 1:19 pm

Great job! I would love to try a triathlon but I don’t have a bike- when did you get yours? (and how did you pick it)

there are so many rules in transitioning too! I think I’d be confused.
Were the pearl izuni shorts comfortable after the swim too?

I’m terrible at guessing who is in my age group- last time I thought I was beat by a twelve-year-old but she turned out to be twenty four…

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18 Gina G May 23, 2010 at 1:22 pm

Way to go girl! you rocked it! =)

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19 Chloe May 23, 2010 at 1:35 pm

Great job! I definitely think it was smart of you to let swimmers go ahead. I always count to ten after my wave leaves and then I usually swim on the outside of the pack. I’m a pretty good swimmer, but hate being jostled around.
Looks like a lot of fun!

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20 Evelyn @ cheers2healthy May 23, 2010 at 1:45 pm

Good job!! Your triathlon recap is making me super super super excited and nervous about my first sprint tri! It’s in two weeks… ahhh!!! I’m so happy you did so well on yours :D

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21 gavrielski May 23, 2010 at 1:46 pm

Congratulations! What an outstanding achievement! It’s great to walk away from an experience like that with a few lessons learned, too. I can’t wait for my sprint in September! :)

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22 clairedille May 23, 2010 at 1:51 pm

Congrats lady! It looks and sounds like a great race!

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23 Miranda @ Mirandasjeans May 23, 2010 at 2:00 pm

Congratulations! Wow that is awesome! I am doing my first beginners triathlon in Aug (375meter swim, 10k bike, 2.5k run). I find it to motivating to read about everyone else’s thought and mental perspective during their races.

Amazing on your time. Great job!

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24 Danielle May 23, 2010 at 2:06 pm

Congratulations!! I def. see iron womans in your future ;)

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25 ~Jessica Zara~ May 23, 2010 at 2:13 pm

Amazing! Huge congratulations and I love your tactics during races. I often start from the back of the pack and get very disillusioned but it’s such a wonderful feeling to hunt down the competition and pick them off one by one in the closing stages. I’m just applying this to running though: I admire you so much for doing a tri…the swim would terrify me.

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26 Robyn May 23, 2010 at 2:14 pm

Wow. Amazing job!! Thank you so much for sharing all of it with us!

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27 Liz May 23, 2010 at 2:14 pm

Congratulations! That looks like so much fun! I just read your story in Shape yesterday because I saw you mentioned it in one of your recent posts, and I have to say it’s extremely inspiring :)

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28 Sarah May 23, 2010 at 2:16 pm

Congratulations on a great race! Looks like I would have won that bet:-).

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29 Sarah May 23, 2010 at 2:18 pm

I so enjoyed reading your recap! Congratulations, you rock!

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30 Laura Georgina May 23, 2010 at 2:27 pm

Wow, congrats on such an awesome tri! You’ve got serious speed, girl :-)

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31 dianacheung May 23, 2010 at 2:32 pm

YOU FLEWWWWWWW girl!!! congrats. It amazes me the dedication you have to fitness…and Derek. ;)

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32 littlemissminny May 23, 2010 at 2:41 pm

Congratulations, from my heart!
I am amazed at how strong you are, and how you enjoyed it almost all the time. It’s wonderful to see how you’re smiling on the photos :)

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33 Jessi May 23, 2010 at 2:43 pm

Congratulations! You look and sound so amazing. I love that you seem just so passionate about it and it shows all over the place. <3

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34 Emilyeatsclean May 23, 2010 at 2:45 pm

Congrats!!! I don’t blame you for staying back on the swim…..that is the part that freaks me out too! Way to go…

-emily

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35 Alicia May 23, 2010 at 2:52 pm

You are a rockstar! Way to go!

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36 Courtney May 23, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Congrats on your victory! Sounds like you approached it just right…by competing against only yourself (until the end anyways!!) Great job…makes me want to go do a tri RIGHT now.
Rest up!
Courtney
adventures in tri-ing

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37 Julie @ Pickley Pear May 23, 2010 at 2:57 pm

Great race Meghann! That is awesome. The weather looks perfect too. I give you a ton of credit, not sure I’m tri material…yet :) Interesting combo in the omelet, I think I may like it – sweet and savory. Have a great rest of your day!

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38 Jenn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) May 23, 2010 at 3:06 pm

Congrats! That’s a great accomplishment :)

Funky omelet, LOL.

Jenn

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39 Kate May 23, 2010 at 3:11 pm

Wow! Congratulations :) That is such an impressive improvement on last year! Your swimming has just improved so much, and what a great run split!! It’s definitely time for an Oly now :)

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40 runnerforever May 23, 2010 at 3:17 pm

Rock on is right, congrats!

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41 Natalie Tate May 23, 2010 at 3:45 pm

Awesome job! I really like the idea of starting in the back of the pack, especially for the swimming portion. That sounded scary! This post definitely makes me want to try a sprint triathlon! I guess I should probably learn how to ride a bike first though, right? haha Congrats again!

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42 Eating Abroad May 23, 2010 at 3:59 pm

Right On! Looks like you had a wonderful day and loved every minute of it! You are certainly inspiring! Congratulations on a job well done!

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43 inmytummy May 23, 2010 at 4:14 pm

That’s awesome. Congrats!

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44 shelly May 23, 2010 at 4:28 pm

Congrats on a great day! What an accomplishment!!

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45 Anna May 23, 2010 at 4:55 pm

Ahhhhhhhh, congrats!!!!! You are inspiring!!!

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46 Nicci@NiftyEats May 23, 2010 at 4:56 pm

You rocked that race, congrats on the Tri. Great job.

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47 Julie @ Wearing Mascara May 23, 2010 at 4:59 pm

YEAAAAA girl! CONGRATS! :-) Haha, I laughed when you described how you took down the other competitors on the run. That’s awesome :-) GREAT job!!!!

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48 shannon May 23, 2010 at 5:02 pm

Meghann, you kick ass!!! Seriously!

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49 hundredtenpounds May 23, 2010 at 5:06 pm

Awesome!!!!! You did a great job! The swim part terrifies me. Not the swimming–but the other people!

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50 Danielle May 23, 2010 at 5:09 pm

Great job today! I’m contemplating my first tri (I need to get a bike first…) so it’s been nice hearing everyone’s recaps.

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51 Carolyn @ lovinlosing.com May 23, 2010 at 5:21 pm

This made me so excited for my tri in July! Congratulations!

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52 AngelaOSG May 23, 2010 at 5:22 pm

IM SO PROUD OF YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! COngrats!!!! Oh gosh was this an exciting read. You have given me so much inspiration for my try-atri in a couple weeks. You rock!

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53 Louise May 23, 2010 at 5:32 pm

C O N G R A T U L A T I O N S!!!!!!

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54 Laura May 23, 2010 at 5:54 pm

Congrats on the race! I competed in a sprint tri this morning as well and thought of you while I was doing the swim portion! How many people were at your tri? I did a women’s only race and there was close to 900 people!! It started thundering though and only about 1/4 of us got to complete the swim-the rest had to do a duathlon.

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55 Lisa @ bakebikeblog May 23, 2010 at 6:19 pm

What a fantastic effort! Gosh I love triathlons – sadly it is approaching winter here so the season is over … for now :)

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56 Tami May 23, 2010 at 6:37 pm

great job. I am training for my first triathlon in a few weeks. I did my first duathlon today, you shoudl try and find one to race in. I placed 2nd in my age group (it was a very small race)! i am pleased with how it all played out. the bike course was very hilly (the event was held at a ski area in New Hampshire!)

great job

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57 Brynne May 23, 2010 at 6:49 pm

Congrats Meghann!

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58 epicourtusf May 23, 2010 at 7:08 pm

Good Job, Meghann!!

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59 Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] May 23, 2010 at 7:41 pm

Love the hot pink swim caps : )

Congrats on completing your 2nd tri! I did them when I was young, and I’m tempted to train for one again…

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60 luckytastebuds May 23, 2010 at 7:48 pm

yyaaayy congratulations on 3rd place and totally rocking this race Meghann!! You hands DOWN give the best race recaps in the entire world of blogland (wherever that is…)

I’m constantly amazed at just how many important decisions you need to make for yourself throughout the entire race. About pacing, about pushing, about being safe. It really brings so much more persepctive and respect for athletes like yourself. :) Congrats again!!!

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61 missyrayn May 23, 2010 at 8:16 pm

That is such a great accomplishment!

I would love for my puppies to cheer me on at an event. Hunni suggested bringing them to my next race since he isn’t running.

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62 Ashley Spencer May 23, 2010 at 8:17 pm

girl you are simply amazing! always so inspiring, love it! So happy for you, amazing accomplishment :) xoxox

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63 Anne P May 23, 2010 at 8:27 pm

Congrats, girl! Looks like it was fun :)

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64 Mary May 23, 2010 at 8:31 pm

Congrats!! that’s an awesome time! :)

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65 coffeerun May 23, 2010 at 8:48 pm

Congrats! And I love that white top!

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66 Brittany May 23, 2010 at 8:49 pm

Congratulations Meghann! 3rd place in your age group for the females is simply amazing. So proud of you!!

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67 chasingthenow May 23, 2010 at 8:56 pm

Congrats Meghann! That is awesome! :)

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68 Morgan @ Life After Bagels May 23, 2010 at 9:18 pm

sometimes I feel like you’re going to announce next that you’re going to fly to the moon! You are so intense – such an inspiration :)

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69 runningwithsass May 23, 2010 at 9:22 pm

way to go you did awesome!
I did that a cuple weeks ago, I placed in my age group and didnt know so we left,then I was bummed when I found out!

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70 Jackie (Peaces of Earth) May 24, 2010 at 3:09 am

So awesome, congrats!!! I’m getting more and more inspired to do a tri. :)

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71 britishbride May 24, 2010 at 6:37 am

Wow fab post Meghann – well done!

You really inspire me!

Julia
http://www.britbride.com

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72 legalb May 24, 2010 at 8:39 am

Great job Meghann! Your swim time is kick ass :)

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73 Kelly May 24, 2010 at 9:59 am

Congrats on your race! Awesome times for everything!

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74 caronae May 24, 2010 at 10:13 am

congrats! sounds like fun :)

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75 Bobbi May 24, 2010 at 11:25 am

Awesome JOB lady!!! You got me all pumped for my Sprint Tri in a month. Hey if you want to do the Vine Man Half Iron Man with me next June that would be awesome!!! http://www.vineman.com/Vineman_Ironman_70_3.htm

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76 jessica May 24, 2010 at 5:05 pm

Good job! Between this post and Jenna and Caitlin’s bike ride I’m ready for my own adventure! Thanks for the inspiration and congrats on 3rd place!!!!

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77 Heather @ Side of Sneakers May 24, 2010 at 5:17 pm

Congrats, awesome job!!! :)

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78 Bridget May 24, 2010 at 10:22 pm

Congratulations Meghann!!! You did amazing!!! So impressive and inspiring :) I would have the hardest time with the seaweek….yuck!

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79 Kelly May 21, 2011 at 9:54 pm

I know this is an old post but I’ve read it several times because I’m doing the BP Tri tomorrow and it’s my first one. This had lots of good information so I feel more prepared! Thanks!! :)

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80 Sam @ Mom At The Barre July 7, 2011 at 10:52 pm

Meghann,
I just stumbled across this post from Katy Widrick’s website and I must tell you what a great post it is. A sprint triathlon is on my bucket list but I have been intimidated by the whole prospect, especially the not knowing what to expect. I love how you describe each segment so thoroughly. I was reading it and thinking hey, maybe I can do this! The swim portion freaks me out also but I would totally give people a 30s head start also. Again, great post!

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