End of the bike leg, hitting the horribly bumpy cobblestone. Not fair after 90 minutes in the saddle.

After four solid months of training, it’s over — I participated in the St. Anthony’s triathlon on Sunday, and I finished. Final, official time: 3:04:12. Take that, #50 on my Life List!

(I posted a full race report over at Fit Bottomed Girls and you should definitely go read that, but, well, this was kind of a big deal for me, so I thought it was worth sharing here as well.)

I approached the race with far less nerves than I thought I would, in part thanks to Jared who really made a point to keep me busy and having fun as much as possible. I truly didn’t feel any real nerves until about an hour before my wave took off in the race, when he walked off to find a better spot for taking pictures and meeting his mom and sister. Then, the butterflies really got going.

Just a little windy pre-race, as you can see.

The swim was cut short by about a third due to windy conditions and rough water, hence the “sort of” in the title — instead of 1500 meters, it was 1000, so I haven’t officially completed an Olympic distance tri. But, don’t get me wrong — I’m still ridiculously proud of the fact that I trained for and finished the race. An extra 500 meters wouldn’t have made such a big difference. In fact, because of the rough water, the swim was actually moved, which was great for swimming, but it meant we had to run something like half a mile from the end of the swim to get to transition, so I’m not sure how much difference the shortened swim made in my overall time.

Speaking of time, as you can see, I didn’t meet my goal of a sub 3-hour race (although Jodi did when she passed me in the run and promptly kicked my ass — way to go, girl!). I did pretty well in the swim, coming in fifth in the female novice division, and really shocked myself in the bike, coming in 11th. No, seriously, I even kind of enjoyed the bike. I chatted with people, I pushed myself, and I think I really improved my cycling skills.

The run was a killer, though. I started the run right around 11 a.m., and y’all, it was hot. And humid. And there was very little shade. But, I mean, that was the case for everyone, not just me, so it’s certainly not an excuse for running a full minute slower per mile than I’d planned. However, here’s how I’m looking at it — this is a place where I have a LOT of room to improve. I know I need to put a little more work into training for that portion, and next time, I’ll kill it.

Done! And medals! (And soon, beer!)

Oh, did I say next time? Yep, next time. I’m going to try to do another one, ideally sometime soon. I’ll keep you guys in the loop, for sure. And, this might be the stepping stone to the half-Ironman. I’m not committing just yet, but it’s definitely in my sights.

Love means not pulling away when I rub my sweat all over you.

Also in my sights? Getting Jared back into sprint distance. In addition to Coach Patrick and Training Buddy Jodi, Jared deserves a ton of credit. He did quite a few of my workouts with me (or at least went out with me, even if we did slightly different workouts), and he was a great photographer and cheerleader during the race.

He wasn’t alone, either. Jodi’s parents and boyfriend were there, cheering loudly, as were Jared’s mom and sister and my bff Jami and her husband and children. There’s nothing better than seeing a whole group of friendly faces in transition and at the finish line, let me tell you.

My mother-in-law, Lisa, and sister-in-law, Jenna. They brought pastries, which I dug into after the beer.

Cam, Jami, Noah and Luke were total troopers and gave some great high fives.