Saturday, July 13, 2019

June Lake Olympic Tri-Anna-2019 (1st Olympic Distance!)

7/13/19, June Lake, CA
1.5km S – 40km B – 10km R

3:16:31 (33:30 – 1:07 – 1:32:09 – 1:34 – 1:08:10)


1st, F 1-14; 9th Overall (out of 69)


OLY – FCA: Robin Soares; Sharley Simpson

KIDS RACE – FCA: Ariel Soares

LONG COURSE – FCA: Troy Soares

I start to walk out to the water. The water isn’t that cold and it looks pretty clear. There is a big rock in the water and I climb it before I start. I look over all the swimmers and see a girl about my age I met yesterday. I go over and talk to her. This is her first triathlon but she is on a swim team and has been running and biking. After talking to her I go over to the start with my mom. We get water in our wetsuits so they will come off better. The announcer starts to countdown. 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Go!

I start to swim. I feel good in the beginning but I remember that I have a long way to go. I try to draft off people in the beginning, but they are either too fast or to slow. I enjoy the swim. It is very clear and I can see the bottom of the lake. I see a lot of big sticks that have sunk to the bottom. After a while, I turn at the first buoy. The next buoy is a long way away. The water starts to get deeper. I draft off a swimmer ahead of me for a little while. The swimmer then goes to the side. I don’t follow her because I want to go in a straight line. As I get close to the next buoy, I start to see so rocks underneath me. But the rocks aren’t that high up. I get to the buoy and turn around it. A guy behind me goes on the other side of the buoy without knowing and we sort of collide.

There are two more buoy's ahead of me before I turn into shore. As I am swimming, I try to draft but it doesn't go that well. After some time, I start to see the bottom again. I look at the bottom of the lake while I swim. I see something moving and realize it’s two fish swimming together. I have reached the buoy and head for the last one. I feel a little bit more energy and keep swimming. I make it to the last buoy and go around it. I start to swim into shore. I see the rock that I climbed before I started swimming. I use the rock as a buoy and swim towards it and the arch. The bottom of the lake is getting shallower. I wait until my hand's touch to stand up. Once my hands touch the sand I stand up and run towards the arch.

Before I get there, I take off my wetsuit. I run through the arch and put on my flip flops. From there I run on the sand around transition and then into transition. In transition, I put my socks and helmet and take off. As I am running out of transition I remember I forgot my arm warmers. But I am warming up so I continue without them.

I start biking up a hill and put my bike shoes on. I continue biking. I make a turn and start to bike around the lake. I'm biking on the road I saw cars drive on while I was swimming. We go down a long hill and I enjoy it. It's a little cold because I still wet from the swim but the wind is drying me off. I go to another hill and there's a sharp turn. I'm in the bike lane and when I make the turn I skid a little bit on the debris. Praise the Lord I didn't slip!

I continue down the hill and bike through a town. Up ahead I see a car and truck at a stop sign. One of the cars goes and I'm sure the other car will wait for me to pass. The car does not wait though and doesn't even look in my direction when it starts to drive. I have to slow down in order to not run into the truck. I somewhat go around the truck. A biker behind me comes up and says “what a jerk”. I'm pretty sure she got slowed down by the truck too.

We go down another hill and I enjoy it. The hills are nice but I know that uphills will come. I see a waterfall up ahead, it's very pretty. There's water coming out of the rocks and then the waterfall goes right back into the rocks. There are a lot of small lakes along the road and it is pretty. We are biking around another lake now. The lake is not as big as the lake that I swim in. Looking ahead I see the mountains which are very pretty. The road looks like it is going between two of the mountains. I continue at my speed passing some people and others passing me. I make sure to drink my electrolyte water to keep hydrated. As I get closer to the mountains, I finish my first water bottle. I keep biking while switching my two water bottles. Now I can grab my other water bottle better. 

I bike through the mountains and continue. I'm on a flat road and I can see the highway in front of me. I also see an aid station coming up. As I get closer, I try to  decide if I should grab water or not. There is a biker getting water and both people at the aid station are helping her. It wouldn't be a fast transition to get water, so I decide not to.

I keep biking and make a sharp right onto the highway.  I am biking on the side of the highway and it is bumpy. There are a lot of cracks on the road. Up ahead I see a hill. It looks steep but not that bad. I bike towards the hill and start climbing it. A guy doing the long course goes by me and say “I like your handlebars.”  I say thanks and look at my handlebars. My handlebars are orange and his are orange too. I call back “I like your handlebars too”. I keep biking uphill and bike around a turn. As I go around the turn I see the hill continues even farther. I am already tired and I don't want to go up the hill. But I know I will eventually get to the top. I continue drinking my water and biking.

After what seems forever I see the top. There's a lady in front of me and I reach the top as soon as she does. I say “finally we get to the top” and she agrees with me. I thought I would enjoy the top of the hill but it is windy and it's almost like I'm still climbing the hill. There is a small downhill but it doesn't feel like one because of the wind. Up ahead I see one biker climbing up a steep hill and I think, when is this going to end. But I realize other bikers are turning before the 2nd hill, so that must be someone else on their own bike ride.

As I get closer to the turn, my Dad comes up behind me. We talk and I tell him I'm drinking a lot of water. I turn right then onto a road. I know I am close to transition. There is another hill up ahead but it doesn't look as bad as the highway hill. I see my Dad start to climb the hill ahead of me. I get to the hill and start to climb. The hill is a little tiring but it's not that bad because I know the transition is close. A lady and I go back and forth on the hill until we reach the top. At the top, my Dad goes straight because he's doing that half Ironman course and I go right. It's downhill and I start to recognize the campsite area.

I continue biking down the hill and get closer two the downhill to transition. I almost missed the turn because no one's really directing it and I don't know if it's the correct one. But people start yelling at me as soon as I don't turn right away so I turn. I go downhill and take my feet out of the bike shoes. I slow my bike down and jump off. I run into transition and rack my bike. My mom's bike is a little too close to my side so I kind of have to push it over as I'm putting my bike on. I take my helmet off and put on my shoes, race belt, and hat. I grab my gels and start running. I take a quick detour to the restroom and then run out of transition. My sister, who's volunteering, cheers me on as a runout.

I run down some steps and onto some sand. I run across the sand to a single-track trail. On the trail, I take one of my gels. I run on the trail until I see aid station up ahead. At the station, I grab water and turn to run up a steep hill. The hill doesn't look that bad, but it is covered in sand. As I'm running up, I feel like I'm slipping backwards a little bit. It is a calf killer and I walk some of the hill. I see people running down and they are going fast. Too bad I can't go fast upward.

After a lot of climbing, I finally reach the top. I run on the road to the next aid station. I grab water then continue. I go downhill and it is a fun break. As I am going downhill, I see my Dad biking uphill on the half Ironman course. He says good job to me and tells me to drink water and pour water on my head. I smile and say ok. After the long downhill, I go up a short hill which leads to a small downhill. I see a turn sign and turn over and get onto another single-track uphill. This is also covered in sand and does not look fun. I run up it to the next station.  As I get closer to the aid station, a man at the aid station says “wow you're really old” just to be funny. The truth is that I am the youngest competitor. At the aid station, I grab water and an orange. I then continue up the hill. It looks like it's never going to stop. It reminds me of climbing up from the river at home except with sand. I run some but mostly walk it. My calves are really sore. A lady at the front of me is fast walking up the hill. I don't know how she could fast walk when you keep slipping a little bit backwards from the sand.

When it gets a little bit flat I pass her in a man ahead of me. But then it gets steep and I walk a little bit. When I finally get to the top I start to run. There is a pretty Pond and it looks very inviting because I'm very hot. I take a gel to get some energy back. There's an aid station up ahead and I get water and an orange. I go through the trees a little bit and then start going downhill. The downhill is like switchbacks and you have to be careful you don't go too fast or you might run over the edge. It is really rocky and I try not to trip or fall. My ankle hurts a little bit but I just try to relax it. As I'm running downhill I have to stop sometimes because I'm going so fast. Since I got water to aid station I start to have some cramps. After a little bit of running the cramps fade away. It sometimes feels overwhelming because of the pain, cramps, and the heat. But I just go to God and he helps me not to freak out about it.

After about a half-mile going steep downhill the trail widens out and is a gradual downhill. A half-marathon runner passes me he's going very fast.  I see an aid station up ahead and run towards it. The downhill is still steep but not as bad. I grab water at the Aid Station and someone asks if I want water on my back. I say yes and a man puts a water-filled sponge on my back and I feel refreshed. I am at the bottom and I run on a sandy trail next to the road.  After running on the sandy trail I cross over where I crossed before and start heading back. I'm getting excited because I am almost done and I can't wait to be done because it is very hard.

I run up the hill and then get a nice downhill. There's a long uphill ahead and since I already walked a lot, I challenge myself to run all the way up it. As I run up the hill my legs hurt. I don't want that slow me down so I push through. I get almost the top and there is an aid station. I stop just to grab water and continue on. I pour the rest of the water on my head and it gives me new energy to keep running.

I continue running upward and then I get to run down a little bit. Up ahead I see the downhill Sandy trail to the finish line. I'm very excited that I'm almost done. I hit the sandy trail and it is a steep downhill. I run down jumping over rocks as I go. I see others walking up the hill and I know how they feel because I had to walk up it too. As I'm going downhill I almost run into someone who was also running downward. It is a tight turn and I am going very fast. I don’t run into her, but say sorry for almost running into her.

There is a little flat spot and then it's downhill again. I can see the aid station up ahead but don't grab anything because I'm so close to the finish line. I run around the aid station and get onto a small trail. I can see the finish line at the end and my mom and sister waiting for me. I run on the trail and then onto the sandy beach. It's so sandy it's hard to run. I get into the finish line shoot and I am running as hard as I can through the sand. I finish pointing into God. It was a hard race and God kept me stable through it all. My Mom and sister both did well in the races and my Dad did amazing in his Half Ironman with God's help.

Praise The Lord For He Is Good His Love Endures Forever.