I stood up to pedal in a big gear for about a quarter mile, about 3/4 miles from home. Then I switched to a tiny gear and spun my legs like crazy for not very far, because it felt ridiculous and I was barely moving. Then I prepared myself mentally for the run, visualizing what I would do when I got home (remember to pee) and heading out on my run. I remembered to eat first. I realized I should add "apply chapstick" to my list of things to do during the transition.
I got home, saved my heart rate monitor data for the bike, went inside, changed shoes and headphones (long story), and took off. Immediately I felt a difference and the run was pretty smooth.
Earlier this week, I went to a "Tri 101" lecture hosted at Bicycle Village, and presented by the official Tri for the Cure coach, Melissa. She was great! She answered a lot of my questions, which I asked without hesitation or embarrassment in front of a fairly large group. I even made everyone laugh a couple times. And I learned a lot.
One of my concerns was about the bike ride course being narrow and perhaps requiring some finesse on the turn around points. I'm great going straight and around gentle curves, but this course appeared to have a few sharp turns and I was envisioning myself teetering around these precarious corners at a slow rate of speed, getting in everyone's way and perhaps unclipping in a panic. I asked if I should be worried about that if I'm not the most graceful, natural athlete on my bike, and she insisted I'd be fine, and everyone else looked relieved as well.
The other question was about what I should wear. Let me back up briefly to the hour or so before the lecture, which I spent trying on "triathlon apparel". This was an unenjoyable experience, to say the least. First, I was handed a pair of bike shorts with a tiny chamois and pockets. Yes, pockets. And for the top, I was handed a tank top with a shelf bra. Each of these items was over $70. I asked, what about a bathing suit? I was told, you swim in the shorts. Snarling a little, I took them to the fitting room to just see what this was all about. And it was awful. The shorts had that silicone grippy stuff around the leg and waist opening. So it was like, stuck to my body, too tight, squishing every little bit of cupcake up out around my waist, revealing what did not appear to be a triathlete's belly. Pouting a little and trying to save my pride, I pull on the tank. Immediately my waist disappears, leaving me looking much like I had no waist at all. Adding to this "not what I had in mind" vision, was the fact that it was completely uncomfortable. Even the mediums, I swear.
Anyway, I asked Coach Melissa what I could wear, and if anyone thought I really needed some expensive quick-dry mini chamois for an 11.4 mile bike ride. The answer from the crowd was a resounding "no" (which I now know to be true, having ridden today sans chamois), and she said, you can do the whole thing in your bathing suit. Do you have a bathing suit? The answer: I have one with flowers and crap hanging off of it, it's super cute. Ha ha ha.
So I spent arguably too much time on line hunting down the ideal racing triathlon appropriate bikini. I found one that was highly rated by someone who had just finished a triathlon of the same distance through a cute website called "team estrogen.com", and what appeared to be an identical one on "trisports.com", which offered 15% off for new customers. Sold.
Upon further inspection, the next day, I notice these suits are not identical. Close. I like the one on team estrogen better, and no, I can't explain exactly why but I do. So, I've ordered three total suits (I've even admitted to a friend that they will all show up and likely be the exact same suit, but they just look different to me in the pictures, don't they??). One small from trisports, and one small and one medium (realizing I may not be as small as I thought) from team estrogen. Let's hope one fits, and that it too, is super cute.