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I am sure I will come up with something motivational out of this. Right now I am just sad. I guess that could be a point...even highly motivated people get bummed out. It happens to all of us!

And, here is the motivation I found...


Rajesh Durbal and his impact on others is my latest favorite story. He is a triple amputee that I saw compete at St. Anthony's triathlon. Actually, he looked so powerful, happy, and confident in his finish that it took me several views of this photo to realize he was a triple and not double amputee. Google him and read his amazing story!

​But...don't miss the lucky catch I had of the lady behind him. A picture is worth a thousand words and her's says, "OMG, look at him! Amazing!!" This is a reminder to each of us. We never know who we are impacting, inspiring, and sending messages to. Make them an inspiring message. In the end make sure people saw your life as one of Courage - Determination - Perseverance!! Live BADASS everyday! -EnduredGirl


About the actual RACE:

Okay, enough about why I couldn't race and more about the ACTUAL race! 


EXPO:  The expo was pretty nice.  They held it outside close to where the race was held.  This was awesome because you could walk between the expo, transition area, swim in/out, and bike and run in/out.  It was great to be able to visualize the journey ahead of time.  I initially went as soon as the EXPO opened on Friday.  I wanted to get my race stuff and scope out the area before it became too crowded (I HATE crowds).  I checked in, got my gear, and then headed over to transition to see the setup.


I went back to the EXPO on Saturday and many more vendors were there.  I personally like to browse through EXPOs because I like to see gear in PERSON.  I find that shops often carry their favorites in triathlon gear...which for some reason are rarely my favorites.  Many times I have found items online and wondered what the quality, fit, feel, etc. would be.  The EXPO allowed me to experiment.  I ended up purchasing a triathlon bag at the EXPO (which I now LOVE!!! - check out my Product Reviews Page).  My only complaint is the sales people really want you to shop.  In their defense the price for a booth is pretty high at the race.


TRANSITION:  

​Transition spots are pre assigned.  There are pros and cons to this.  The pro is you do not have to arrive early for a good spot.  You get what you get.  The con is you can't arrive early for a good spot.  You get what you get.  I found mine and took several pictures of where it was.  I practiced walking in from the swim, out to the bike, in from the bike, and out to the run.  I even found a St. A's expert who told me some keys to look for as far as sighting goes (Look for the tall peach buildings of the hotels behind the exit), etc.  Transition is pretty big and laid out very well.  The rows were numbered and marked so you really only have to remember your row number.  I took pictures of mine and memorized it.


SWIM EXIT:

I never took part in the swim entrance so I cannot comment on that.  On race day I did watch the swim exit (I had to go back to get my bike...so I decided to make the most of it and cheer some people on!).  You exit on metal stairs that bring you out of the water.  Volunteers help you out and keep you from slipping.  They have indoor/outdoor carpet immediately as you exit and some people asked volunteers to strip their wetsuits.  This was the way to go...before getting into transition.  A key...they are super serious about the cutoff time (similar to other USAT sanctioned races).  Leading up to it they knew the final two people in the water and were prepared to pull their timing chips if they didn't make it to shore in time.  One gentleman made it, barely, and the lady did not.  The lady was a little out of sorts and so they took her immediately to the medical tent.  Her day was over.


BIKE ON/OFF:

The bike ON/OFF is on a road made of brick pavers.  Okay, word to the wise...this is NOT the time to practice your flying mount or your mount with shoes already attached if you are not already an expert at it.  On the other hand, it was a little comical for those of us watching the race.  I saw one guy tumble over his bike as he hit the brakes to stop before the OFF line.  I saw plenty of people fumble trying to get into their shoes already clipped in.  This is, however, the race to practice getting out of your shoes ahead of the dismount and running barefoot back into transition.  The people who did that and carried their bikes were much more efficient than those clanking away on the pavers.


MEDAL: 

It is big and beautiful...and my eyes watered at not getting one!  The finish line stands were packed.  The announcer was "okay"...I didn't find his humor quite so humorous but then again I was watching a race I was supposed to be racing and so I might have been a little harsh.


OVERALL:

This is a fabulous race.  Lots of Pros, Olympians, and really cool people.  Add it to your bucket list.  I plan to be there in 2015.  Come and play with me!!


​@EnduredGirl



NOTE: For info about the actual race and not my personal dilemma...scroll to the bottom.


26 APR 2014 - How much difference a few hours can make...Yesterday I had a different theme to a blog post planned. I got up at 6 am and drove straight to the St. Anthony's Triathlon Expo in less than 7 hours. I was feeling on top of the world! I jammed to Rocky style motivational music in the car, enjoyed the scenery, and was proud that the trip only cost $40 in gas in my new hybrid vehicle. Life was good.

I arrived at the Expo, checked in, and was diligent about scoping the layout of the land. I found a long time volunteer who explained the water, bike, and run in/outs as well as some things to look out for. I walked through my transitions and drove parts of the bike and run course. I headed back to my family's home feeling ready and confident.Then around 8:30 I started not feeling well. By 9 I was having stomach cramps so I went to bed. By midnight I was projectile vomiting. I spent the next three hours in and out of the bathroom losing every bit of nutrition and hydration I had. I forced myself to remain calm and not cry...it would be fine.


Today I ate bland food and drank some rehydrate fluids very slowly. I thought it was possible that I could still race so I went back and checked my bike in the mandatory check-in and listened to a novice workshop. So far I had kept everything down...until about 3 when I officially put a porta potty out of commission. I never had that on my bucket list but...check.

I came back to my family, ate rice and apple sauce, and slept a few hours. I just tried some Gatoraid and am back in bed...praying to keep it in me.


No race tomorrow. I am sad. I have trained hard and I was prepared. I was so excited. However, my husband and daughter come first and risking serious health consequences to race would be plain stupid. I have to go back to get my bike so I will go and watch as a spectator and take in the event with so many professionals competing.

 April 27, 2014 - St. Anthony’s Triathlon, St. Petersburg, FL - Got sick with food poisoning or a stomach virus.  I ended up watching this race from the sidelines.  Very difficult day!