Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pre-Race Nervousness

I don't think I have ever been this nervous for a race in my life!  And since I have been running since I was 5, that is a lot of races.  This triathlon has got me completely spooked.    All this worry had me in tears last night.  I hate being the newbie.  I can't wait to get this race done so I can have my first triathlon out of the way.  Now the rest of this post is just going to be me getting all my fear and worries out of my head so if it doesn't make sense to you, I apologize.

PRE-RACE: Where do I rack my bike?  How do I rack my bike?  What do I do with my transition bag during the race (do I leave it in the transition area or bring it back to the car?), and my phone?  What do I do first when I get to the park?  Are there aid stations and where are they located?  Is there a SAG wagon or do I need to get to a certain point on the course if I need to drop?  The information provided on the race's website leaves a lot to be desired.  There isn't even a course map.  I sure would like to be familiarizing myself with the course and transition layout more than the day before.  (Is this common to triathlons?  The other race I'm signed up for in July doesn't provide much info on their website either, although at least they have a map.)

SWIM: I have had my wetsuit on exactly twice.  Once just to try it on.  The second time I wore it in a local lake just to see what it felt like wet.  I didn't actually do any swimming in it to speak of since my "support crew" consisted of my husband and my 1-yr old son on the beach.  I did get a good feel for its buoyancy and how and where the water came in.  And the lake wasn't nearly as cold as I thought it would be.  Let's hope that's the case on Sunday as well.  My biggest problem at the lake was getting my face into the cold water and breathing.  I don't mind the cloudy water and lack of visibility so much, I used to swim play in lakes all the time growing up.  That cold water on my face, however, was almost panic-inducing.  It did get better as I practiced simply putting my face in, exhaling, and turning to breathe.  I hope I'll be able to get in the water  just prior to the race so I can work some of that out of my system. 
This will be my first real open water swim.  Aaack!

T1: My only worry here is getting my wetsuit off.  And being able to find my bike- although I will be one of the last out of the water so that should make it easier.  Oh, and being able to get my bike shoes on without falling over.  Or forgetting something.  I also need to remember to take a good drink while I'm here.  (Water, although right now I'm thinking a nice shot of whiskey might be better.)

BIKE: I've only had my bike out on the road 4 times this year.  My non-stellar bike handling skills are even more rusty right now.  I'm hoping to take one Gu and some water while on the bike without falling off.  As long as the wind isn't horrible I should do okay on the bike leg.  Barring any mechanical failures, of course. 

T2:  The things I worry about here are remembering to take my helmet off and remembering to put my race number on.  I kind of figure that if I lay everything out and I make sure that I use everything that I have laid out, I shouldn't forget anything.  To this end, I will wait to put my Bondi band on until after the bike leg so that I have a reminder to take off my helmet.  I haven't decided yet if I'm going to wear my racing shoes or my training shoes.  I've worn my racers on several runs, but never after I'm already fatigued. 

RUN:  I haven't done any brick workouts yet (just haven't reached that point in my plan) so I'm not sure how my legs will feel after the bike.  At this point I'll just be happy to be in my most comfortable discipline.  I may not be able to run very fast by this point, but if I get this far, I know I'll make it to the end. 

OTHER: There's a chance of thunderstorms that day.  Totally not under my control, but nerve-wracking nonetheless.

I know there are so many things I can't control.  That's part of what scares me.  I am the list-maker, the control-freak.  Things should go according to a plan.  For now, I'll just hope I can mentally survive the next few days. 


  1. Hi! I'm a fellow Nestie and found your blog. I worked for a tri company last year and to answer your question about if the course maps are usually not posted, that's often the case with the smaller triathlons. If you do races put on by an actual tri company, they almost always post the maps and info you need. Glad you finished your first tri regardless!

  2. Thanks, that's good to know! I will try not to stress out about it so much next time since that's the norm.