Saturday, August 20, 2011

It is Finished

Well I did it.  I set a goal, work hard for two and a half months and I RAN A TRIATHLON.  Well maybe not run.  

When I got prego with Claire, I felt like I had no control of the situation.  SO... I took control of something, and that something was running a triathlon before Miss Claire was two.  So I researched beginner tri's and found a sprint triathlon in Saratoga Springs, August 20, 2011.  Swim 1/4 mile, bike 13 miles, run 3.1 miles.  Didn't sound so hard at the time, but was I soon convinced by my body that it was difficult... for me at least.  

The swim was different.  I had never swam in open water, surrounded by people, so I was nervous.  I found two girls, equally as nervous and we swam together.  Open water is nothing like swimming in a pool.  There are people kicking you in the face, boobs, smacking you in the bum and head.  You turn your head to take a breath, only to be smacked in the face by a wave.  You just can't get a full breath of air.  But I LOVED it!!!  Nothing like a little Utah Lake grim to stay in your hair, even after three washings!

The bike was a little bit of a "spiritual" experience for me.  My legs were jello after swimming and my bum hurt from the previous training (ok, trying to get used to a road bike) earlier that week.  I was tired and the worst part of the biking was the first six miles.  Hills really aren't my thing.  Anywhoo, I started to say to myself, "You can do this Martineau" to find myself saying (Yes I was talking out loud to myself) "You're a Strickland now, make him proud."  So I really felt like Brandon helped me though even though he wasn't there physically.  I felt like I finally realized that God never wants us, nor intended us to make a hard journey alone.  (Life speaking wise) and so he helps us find a companion and also surrounds you with people who love you and can boyou us up when we feel down or feel like we can't quite make it.  

Running... not my thing.  I knew it would be the hardest sport for me and it was.  I cheered others as they passed me, loved getting sprayed by the resident's water hoses, loved the kids in the street cheering me on.  Did not love the run.  But I'll tell you when I turned that corner and saw that I was almost done and it was down hill, I started to sprint as fast as this slightly chubby body could get me there.  And then it was over, and I ate watermelon.  (Slightly anti climatic huh?)

I remember thinking... 'Oh my hell, I'm almost there!"

Doing a little jig as I ran over the finish line.  Nothing like hearing, "Number 266!  Esther Strickland!  Great Job!" over a really loud speaker

Having my timing chip removed!

This boy urged me to go to the gym, urged me to give up soda (no it hasn't happened yet), drove a car behind me when I was too nervous to take the road bike out on an actual road ( no one wants to die by getting hit by a car).  Thank you for the hug.

Today I made him proud!

A little cheese and rejoycing that the running was over!

Chris got me to pose with my bike like I was getting ready to start the biking portion of the race.

My numbers.  26 years old, participant number 266.  

I may not look like a runner, or swim like someone who knows what they are doing.  I may not have the mental fitness to keep running even though I think I might pass out.  I didn't win, or even come close to winning, but I FINISHED.  And today I can call myself a triathlete.  

Everyone has told me these Triathlons are addicting.  We'll just see about that.


  1. I'm so proud of you!!!! You're awesome, such an inspiration. Seriously. You rock!!!!

  2. congrats!! what a great accomplishment. you rock!

  3. Oh! Way to go Esther! I have been wanting to do a sprint triathlon for awhile but the swim terrifies me too! Good job!

  4. I am so ridiculously impressed! You put me to shame, but I'm still so proud of you!

  5. okay, so I'm officially a boob because your post made me shed a tear! Congrats for finishing! What a great accomplishment!