Let me tell you about my first triathlon. Long post
My first tri (oly. distance) was Aug 2 in Vermont. I live in NY about 4.5 hours away. When I fist got the idea to do a tri my wife said do the one they show on TV in Hawaii so the whole family can go. I explained that that one is an Ironman and I would not be attempting that anytime soon. So we decided on Vermont as my kids have never been there so we decide to drive up Friday do the tri Saturday then sight see Sunday and Monday return to NY Monday night. OK so here is where it gets interesting.
Thursday afternoon I get a call from my daughters day care that she has thrown up and I need to pick her up. I leave work and pick her up she was acting fine, but threw up again at home. Thursday night I woke up not feeling well, but did not get sick. Got up Friday morning went for a light easy run and felt great. Drove the family to Vermont checked into the hotel then went to the park where the Tri was going to be and rode the bike course. I felt great. I was fit and confident the course was almost flat. I went back to the hotel played in the pool with my kids then went to dinner. As soon as we got to the restaurant I did not feel good. I had not eaten anything at the resaurant yet, but my stomach was like a washing machine on the spin cycle.
I made several trips to the men's room with diarrhea. Went back to the hotel and started taking Immodium. I was up every 30 minutes for the first 2 hours until I had taken the max dose of Immodium (12 tsp) I think, then the vomitting started. At 2:30 AM I went to the front desk to get some Tums or Roliads. They did not have any so I had to go to a 24 hour gas station to get some. I ate one roll of Tums and one roll of Rolaids. By 4:00AM I started to feel a little better so I start to try to rehydrate with water and Gatorade. I decided that have to at least start the race and if I had to quit I would. My wife dropped me at the park at 6:15AM for an 8:15 start then went back to round up the kids eat breakfast and come back for the start.
The swim went very well .9 miles in 33min. 31sec, however upon exiting the water both hamstrings were cramping up. I went through the transition did my first bike lap at 21.3 MPH then hit the wall. My second lap was at 17.7 MPH and I was having cramps where I didn't know I had muscles. I finished the bike leg and contemplating quitting, but my family convinced me not to give up. I headed out for the run. I felt OK for the first 1.5 miles then cramped up again. No matter what I tried I could not run again so I decided to walk it as long as I could. I finally got back to the park and could clearly see the finish line within 100 feet. I knew I was going to make it until I got a hamstring cramp like never before. This stopped me in my tracks I felt paralyzed. I could not move and it would not stop. A car stopped and asked me if I needed help, but I could not talk. One of the more experienced tri guys who finished earlier came out on the course to talk me through my dilema. He told me to visualize oxygen getting to the cramp and breathe deeper to relax. This helped and I was able to finish the race in 3:57:05. I was 3rd from last for finishers and there were 5 others that Did Not Finish.
I am glad I did it and am glad I finished it. I got a tremendous amount of support from others on the course and in the transition area. I wish I did not get sick the night before, but that was out of my control. All in all I had a great experience and am looking forward to a Half Ironman next summer. I would tell anyone considering a Tri to get out and do it. The people are great.