fitness · race report · racing · triathalon

Fun Times at the 2015 Kincardine Women’s Triathlon

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After last week’s group pre-race report, and a fantastic event on Saturday, we decided a collective race recap about Kincardine would be fun. Here it is:

Kristen: I love this time away with my old friends and meeting some new friends.  Every Tri I have tried it’s a warm and welcoming environment with someone always willing to lend a hand.  As an event planner and manager of volunteers I always try and remind myself that races are volunteer lead and driven events so try not and judge too harshly.  That being said I do think this group really does need to step up their pre-race talk and etiquette.  The organizing team  missed things I felt were important especially as this event is touted as being a beginner race and they have been at it for 10 years.  I found myself asking questions I knew the answer to just to make sure the many new and nervous faces got this information. Something I learned, although my fitness level is now at a point that I can do this length of a race with very little training (6 months of injuries will do that) I certainly was not happy with the results.  Maybe it’s better to say it feels like a new beginning and is wonderful to feel like I’m not longer broken so can again start to train in earnest.  Hopefully, I’ll be back next year.

Anita: Wow wow wow. Kincardine was such an amazing experience, mostly because of the fantastic spirit shared by everyone there. Of course I have to pass along special high fives to the group of women I was with: Tracy, Samantha, Leslie, Kristen, Natalie, Mallory, Susan, and Tara. We all came with different expectations and training histories but we all left with smiles. I couldn’t ask for a more supportive group of friends. My personal performance was great on the runs (I did the duathlon) but a bit of a poor showing on the bike. Guess what? That didn’t bother me one little bit. In fact I feel like I crushed it. Ya, I crushed it. And I’m coming back for more.

Sam: I went knowing I wouldn’t be fast but I went anyway. And that was okay. More than okay, I had fun. I had surgery less than six weeks ago which meant two weeks with no physical actvity at all, other than walking, then a slow return to normal. I concentrated on the friends and family aspect of this event, drove up there with my daughter, my sister in law, and my cousin in law. We had a great time together with a lovely group of bloggers, guest bloggers, and friends. My injured knee survived the 6 km of (mostly) running and didn’t hurt the next day. Victory!

I was surprised, not at how hard the running part of the duathlon would be as I knew that it would hurt given that I haven’t run much in the past month. I was shocked at how hard biking is after a tough run. I spent 78% of it in Zone 4 of my heart rate training zones. Strava had things to say about that. I also learned the bad effect of slow transitions. My Garmin had my moving bike time at 27 minutes but it was 31 on the race chip time spread sheet. Why? Because that includes getting in and out of my running shoes/biking shoes and swapping hat for helmet and helmet for hat.

I love this event, the smiling volunteers, the cheering community crowds, and the wide range of participants, all ages, skill levels, and fitness abilities. Certainly I’d recommend it to any women in the area considering their first tri. Go for it and enjoy!

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Susan, Tara, and Sam

Nat: I‘m thrilled at how the race went. I absolutely loved being there with a group of friends, new & old. It really made the race interesting to keep an eye out for each other in the bike and race loops since they were out and back courses.

As we gathered to start a few folks were uttering nervous and anxious things. It was harshing my buzz and echoing my inner doubts so I gave a pep talk to those around me. “It’s a beautiful day, the lake is calm and you get to swim surrounded by all these beautiful, strong women. That’s amazing. It will take the time it takes. Enjoy it, it won’t last very long.”

The water was very cold and I didn’t rent a wetsuit but it only slowed me down a couple minutes on the swim.

The bike portion felt amazing as I huffed along on Ethel. I actually passed some folks! Me! Passing! That felt really cool.

Zoom! Zoom! Zoom!

But the run, oh the run, it felt really harsh along the boardwalk then the course merged with the returning runners and I decided I needed some high fives. I needed them bad so I started offering “high fives of awesomeness” to anyone who looked like they could use a boost or even looked me in the eye. Totally gave me something else to focus on and I felt better. My run wasn’t much slower than my usual pace. Yay high fives!

I came in much faster than I expected and faster than I deserved as I hadn’t really trained for this. It was a PB even over a much shorter Try a Tri I did in 2011!

I can’t wait for next year!

Super Nat!
Super Nat!

Leslie: I did it! What a great feeling of accomplishment to have completed (without stopping!) the Kincardine Women’s Sprint Triathalon.  I was overwhelmed by the support and encouragement of the volunteers before, during and after the race.  Even the spectators who lined the route were amazing. A special thanks to the kid with the garden hose-man that cold water felt great on the return leg of the run.  So many smiling faces, and such positive energy.  For me the swim was the most difficult, and therefore presents the main challenge for the new goal I plan on setting down for myself for future triathlons.  I was so impressed at all the results, from all the amazing women participants.  Wow, Katie Peach 43:27 overall race time, you rock! and Jennifer Di Jong in my age category 50 – 54, with a time of 50:17-inspiring.  I had the privilege of meeting the core group of women that my race buddy and tri-mentor Tracy introduced me to.  To Anita, Sam, Kristin, Mallory and all, great to meet everybody.  Finally what had started as something that I was resistant and afraid of, “transitioned” into a positive, empowering experience. Hope to see you all next year.

Tracy in her wetsuit, bathing cap, and goggles, in an exuberant pose before the start of the swim.
Tracy feeling pretty excited that the swim didn’t get cancelled!

Tracy: I had the most fun at the 2015 Kincardine Women’s Triathlon than I’ve ever had at an event. So much so that I wonder if I’m in love with triathlon or just the KWT! It’s a well-run, high-energy event for women (and you know how I love women’s only events!). The volunteers are amazing and the race organizers have their system down to a fine-tuned machine geared at making sure everyone is having a great time.

It looked touch and go for the swim because of water temperature, which registered 8 degrees C the day before the race (minimum to go ahead with the swim is 13 degrees C). But Kincardine’s water is known to “flip” and flip it did.  By the race morning it (just) passed the minimum. Still kind of frigid but with my wetsuit and a pre-race warm-up to get used to the cold water, it was tolerable-ish — it did take me about 2/3 of the swim to find a rhythm, get my stroke under control from the flailing and desperate character it had at the beginning, and start breathing well. I took some time off of my swim from last year and had a good T1.  Swim: 8:35 TI: 2:28

Despite my general struggles with bike training, which meant that I did no training at all once the indoor trainer season ended in late March, I enjoyed the bike ride. As expected given no training, I lost all of my time on the bike. People whom I’d smoked in the swim caught up and passed me all along the route. But I felt solid on the bike and I had absolutely no difficulty with the hills, so there’s that.  Bike: 34:02 (including T2).

I felt pretty good on the run, though I started out of breath. My goal was to push beyond my comfort zone, which I did. In retrospect I could have pushed harder but that’s for another day.  Run: 19:04.

What did I love? I loved being with everyone and having a whole group of people–Sam, Nat, Anita, Susan, Tara, Kristen, Mallory, Leslie, and me. My longtime friend, Leslie, was doing her first triathlon and it was exciting to see how dedicated she was to her training and to watch the mix of nerves and excitement the morning of.  Anita was also doing her first event, a duathlon, and she loved it. And all nine of us were happy. I went into it with no huge expectations and my only real plan (besides pushing on the run) was to have fun. When I came through the finish chute and saw Mallory waiting at the side, and then everyone else started rolling in, I just had a surge of joy!  Perfect weather, perfect company, and a personal best of 1:01:40 that gives me something to work towards for next year, namely, a sub-60 minute finish. That means bike training. Meanwhile, I will bask in the glow of an exhilarating event with an awesome group of women.

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6 thoughts on “Fun Times at the 2015 Kincardine Women’s Triathlon

  1. Hey I recently discovered your blog and as a young feminist I find it inspiring and refreshing to read from your perspective. Your philosophical ponderings and feminist discussions incorporated with fitness is something I think I’ve needed for a long time. It’s difficult to find fitness blogs that aren’t largely aimed at weight loss and I’ve been trying to learn to exercise out of self love rather than body shame. Your blog reminds me that there are others out there that want to exercise for health and strength and not merely aesthetics. Thank you!
    -Kate

    Liked by 2 people

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