Can I Finish A Duathlon?
|| When Dr. Ross Hauser asked me if I could bike 13.5 miles I said “sure.” Really,
I was thinking “Have I ever gone that far?” No, I hadn’t.
The bike that I am used to riding is an island cruiser which is good for doing
just what its name suggests. Ok, go ahead and laugh! But it is the truth. I was
not as concerned about the swimming, nor was Ross. Being a swim buddy of his,
he knew that I could hold my own in the pool. So there it was…. I was
going to attempt the “Staminathalon!”
is an event which consists of a minimum of 2 sports and 4 transitions,
although most of the contenders were doing 3 back to back Olympic triathlons.
My event would consist of .8 mile swim/ 13.5 mile bike/ .8 mile swim/ 13.5
mile bike/ .8 mile swim. Something I had never thought of doing, especially
with only two months to train!
My goals did not involve finishing first,
they were to finish the event without injury, have good energy, have a
quick recovery, and stay relaxed. I had never been on a road bike. Even
the bike I practiced “spinning” on
had been a mountain bike. The day before the race I had to attempt to master
the racing pedals, the fit of the bike, the saddle, and the overall riding
experience. The day before the race I probably only rode about ½ mile
as practice. Anyone who has competed in a cycling event would probably
tell me I was destined for a disaster. There was no turning back though.
One of my biggest concerns, however, had nothing to do with the sports,
but with my food. I was sure that I could not maintain good energy by carbo-loading.
I had attempted 2 carbo-loaded “mini-Staminathalons” as practice
a couple weeks prior to the real race. I had done ok during the first one.
(But no athlete likes to just feel “ok.”) On the second practice “mini-Staminathalon” I
only had good energy for the first couple legs, and in the end I was really
starving for some protein.