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Sunday, June 8, 2008

Mooseman!!

"Thank G-d that's over!
No major injuries. Where's the beer?"
 -William Shakespeare









Gabrielle Rubinstein 35 F 384th/760; swim 19:46;
bike 1:52:32; run 51:45 - 8:20 pace; overall time
3:13:25F35-39 223/322 Females overall

Yay! I survived! What an experience. This may have been
my 5th Olympic distance triathlon, but I really felt like
a triathlon virgin. Let me walk you all through my
experience in shorthand. Friday morning I drove, with Mom
-such a great sport- 6 hours by no direct route;
luckily we had the GPS!

We arrived in time to check in at the B&B. Very nice owners, but they seemed
to be obsessed with Potpourri. We brought my bike to the transition area about
20 minutes away and then carbo-loaded at a local Italian place. The road had
made me tired, and luckily I was able to fall asleep around 10pm.

I woke sometime in the middle of the night and somehow decided I had made a huge
mistake in putting myself through the whole ordeal of the race. However, I was
thereand had gotten my Mom roped into it, so I was stuck!

I woke at 6am and readied myself with my usual ritual: don tri-suit,
put hair in pigtails, make coffee, eat my whole-grain bagel with PB,
honey and banana, go through checklist. Everything in place, we
took off for the race grounds. However, I somehow had ended up
15 minutes behind schedule. Damn that coffee addiction!!

On our way, we got trapped behind a car towing a boat which slowed us down
further,and by the time we got there, I had missed the pre-race meeting.
At that point, I started to panic, which one should never do before the
daunting challenge of puttingon a wetsuit. The first 2 attempts at that
ended with me wearing a wetsuit backwards. Finally, hands completely
cramped, 2 wonderful ladies took pity on me and helped me
learn front from back. Wetsuit on, I walked to the beach.

Newfound Lake, one of the cleanest bodies of water in the US, was
uncharacteristically covered in a heavy fog. The race couldn't start until
the giant red floaters were visible. It looked like they might have to
cancel the swim portion, but while everyone waited, I thought it would be
a good opportunity for me to pump air into my tires.

As I was inflating my tires, the little knob that you insert the pump into
(if I knew the name of that piece, I'd probably also be a better cyclist),
it came off and the tire was kaput. That's when I almost lost it. I ran to
the tech tent and luckily I just needed a new tube. Oh My G-d! What next, right?

So, I run the bike back to transition, and run to the beach, only there's
apparently still deliberation about what to do about the swim.
Meanwhile, putting my feet into water, I discover the temperature had surely
dropped from a tepid 63 degrees to about 55. My toes immediately started
to ache. That's when I started hoping they would just cancel the swim.
They didn't. They did shorten it however, and let me tell you, if
they hadn't, there might have been a lot of people with hypothermia.
As it was, although I was in a sleeveless wetsuit, my arms were warm
from the exertion, but my feet were numb. For an hour. When I got out
of the water 19:48 later, I could have stepped on glass and not known.
Completely numb.

At transition, still in shock from the cold, covered in sand, and
generally dreading what was still to come, it took me aeons to get
my stuff together. More than 7 minutes.

I don't really want to relive the pain and suffering that was the
1:52 bike ride. One hour and fifty two minutes of pain and suffering
says it all. Hills, broken asphalt, never-ending roads.
Nice views, but who was watching?

Now comes the ending to my little tale. I finally returned
(a changed person), so happy to be on the ground again, I took off like
a startled horse and ran faster than I think I have ever ran before.
Mostly, I was just pissed that so many people were passing me on the bike.
I flew by dozens of people (with an 8:20 pace), and finished
the race with bang! Collected my medal, got a free massage,
and got the hell out of Dodge (i.e. Bristol, NH)!

I drove right through to NY, stopping to gorge on a giant burger
in a lovely town called Lebanon, NH, got to NY and slept for 11 hours.

Today, I feel great. Not sore and hungry for more!

1 comment:

ani said...

holy crap gabby! congrats to you! great job! you truly are superwoman! :)