I can’t believe it but 10 weeks has gone by and my triathlon was on Saturday. Near the end of my training, I adjusted my expectations and was just hoping to finish without getting injured. And I did finish!

I actually exceeded my expectation in terms of my times so I was pleasantly surprised. I finished first in the swim for my age group (30-34 year old female) and then my bike and run were much slower :) My total time was 1:44.21. And I got 5th in my age group, out of 9 participants. Placed overall 159 out of about 300 and 41 out of 99 females.

The last half of my training I lost a little bit of steam. I still worked out 5-6 times a week but I stopped tracking my trainings and reflecting on them. This was a hindrance in terms of getting the most out of my trainings. I lost the motivation to do this in part because of time and also my bike kept having different issues that frustrated me. So all this to say, I did the minimum training possible in order to finish the triathlon. This doesn’t sound very heroic, it’s just reality.

kara riding a bicycle during a triathlon

I had grit to work out till the race but I didn’t have grit to push it to the next level and keep up with an intense training. I guess I sound a bit hard on myself. As a friend pointed out, I did after all finish a sprint triathlon after pushing out three babies. I am proud of myself for accomplishing this triathlon but the athlete in me wonders how I could have done if I had just worked a little harder.

A few reflections on strategy. First, I need to work on my bike leg even more. While I am not as weak as I once was on this leg of the race, there is still a lot left to be desired. I need to work hills harder and better. Instead of trying to take bikes routes to avoid hills, I need to embrace them and hit them hard. I was passed by so many people pushing their legs so much harder on the hills.

Second, my brain was still ready to go at the run but my body wasn’t gonna keep up with it. Longer practices that hit the bike with a follow up of a run are a must to improve my speed at the end of my race. My 5K time was 28 min with a split of 9:15 per mile. So I was just trying to finish.

kara running during a triathlon

I plan to do a triathlon in August now and since I did one, I am ready to train better and harder to improve my strategy even more.

One of the things I love about triathlons is that there are people from all walks of life and all ages doing these things. Kids to 70 year olds. I really am looking forward to getting more involved with this community of athletes and getting to know some people!

My dad, husband, and kiddos were there to cheer me on and help me get ready to go. It was so nice to see them cheering me on at different parts of the race. Thanks to those who cheered me on in this process. I appreciate you all for your encouragement and couldn’t have found the motivation day to day to put in the work without you.