Posted by: Jen | October 9, 2009

Let the journey begin

Ahh, I find comfort in an old Navy slogan from my days at the recruiter’s office. Yep, I spent 8 years, 6 months, and 2 weeks (not that I counted) in the World’s Finest Navy. My formative young adult years, from ages 22-31, were spent waking up early, working, marching, saying “yes, sir!” and “yes, ma’am!”, saluting, being saluted (for I was a “ma’am” in the later years), wearing polyester, standing watch, shooting guns, going to school, moving, traveling, moving some more, and sometimes working. I spent more time in school than actually doing anything productive for Uncle Sam, and all in all it wasn’t a bad gig. I did live in 9 states and make many great friends.

This is the story of my journey from recreational and occasionally competitive runner to triathlete and maybe even Ironman. However, that is a long way down the road, and any good runner knows you have to pace yourself to reach your goals. In the meantime we will start with baby steps.

Coming up on October 11th:

The Golden State Triathlon (sprint distance) – Discovery Park, Sacramento, CA (our state capitol, currently inhabited by the Governator and his cronies)

Swim: 1/2 mile in the American River – starting on the south shore, swimming upstream, going around a buoy, and heading downstream to hit the beach on the opposite bank. This is followed immediately by a short run up a sandy/dirty staircase to the transition area. Intimidation Factor: Moderate

Bike: 15 miles on a three-loop, closed course. Intimidation Factor: Low … until you take into account that it is draft legal. And biking is allowed in the transition area. And it’s basically a criterium because the loops are 5 miles each and nobody is keeping track but you. Intimidation Factor: High

Run: My best event. 3 miles out-and-back along the American River Parkway. Intimidation Factor: Non-existent

Weather forecast: Sunny, high of 84. Race time: 9:00 am. My wave: 9:15 am (women 25-29 and we ATHENA types, cuz that’s what I am and always will be – an Athena). How hot will it be by then? Hopefully not too hot. High of 84 is a foreign concept in San Francisco, and it never got that hot this year for more than a few days. I have zero heat acclimation. My last Sacramento race experience was a run-bike-walk due to extreme heat.

I feel pretty good except for the bike portion – not only the draft-legal bit, but because I have spent pretty close to zilch time on the bike. It’s my own fault, too. Training in San Francisco is a major PITA, and I was too stubborn/lazy/stupid/whatever to take the time to go get my car (which is garaged elsewhere due to a significant lack of parking availability), take the bike apart, stuff it in the car, drive, then put it back together, ride, and repeat the whole thing in reverse. I will have to find a better solution come winter.

In the meantime, let the countdown begin…



  1. Nice blog. Good luck on your tri!! I, too, am not a good cyclist so will love reading your followup to see how you did. A tri is something I would like to try.

  2. I am so excited to follow your journey Jen! I love your blog so far!!!

  3. It’s a DIVA blog fest! I like!!

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