Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Memphis is May Olympic Triathlon Relay Race Review

This weekend we, Janell and Debi, got to participate in the Start 2 Finish Memphis in May Olympic Triathlon Relay.

While we are both are training to compete in a Sprint Triathlon later this coming season, we decided to form a relay team in order to enjoy this past weekend's race activities. Neither of us can swim a mile at this point so we asked our swim coach to help us find someone. (We had no idea at the time that the guy that volunteered was a 4 time Ironman, WOW!) Let us tell you, Jason was amazing, and we are so thankful for his willingness to join us as a relay team!

JanellI was truly inspired by all the athletes competing this weekend. I always love to be out there, talking with people, learning their stories and why they compete. With my recent bike purchase, I was a little nervous about the doing the bike relay along with other what seemed to be pro bikers. But, as usual, the running and biking community is always so inviting and helpful. Even though I created the cardinal sin in not putting air in my tires before the race, someone let me borrow theirs. The 24 mile race was really amazing. Even though this is a very flat course,  the first half was brutal with the wind, but once we headed back, I really enjoyed it! 

Debi: I completed the run portion of the relay, 6.2 miles. Standing in the transition area, watching all the racers swimming, biking and then running was surreal.
The run portion of the event starts with you exiting the Harrah's Hotel parking area and going uphill leading to the casino, then it turns right on to a gravel road, then turning left onto a paved road. Once you passed the water misters after mile one, you head under an overpass to find my favorite race volunteers, Breakaway Running, passing out water and gatorade. After that comes the much talked about out and back on black pavement. While there were many water stops, it was a hard and HOT run. So many of the volunteers passing out water were offering to pour water on the runners to help cool them off. They were so sweet! There was so much encouragement along the course from fellow racers, telling each other to "stay strong", or "you're doing great." It's just another reminder why I love this sport so much! 

We are very grateful for the opportunity to be a part of such a well done event. We had a great weekend and as always, honored, to be a part of such an incredible group of runners, swimmers, and bikers. 

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