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Hi, I'm Whitney! I am a middle of the pack runner who discovered the fun of triathlons in 2009. Join me in my adventures in life and training. I run with the Rush Running team and enjoy the fun that comes with such a supportive group of friends who understand what running means to me. I'm newly discovering road biking and the fun that it entails.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Conway CATS Sprint Triathlon Race Recap

If you haven't realized yet...I write long race recaps so grab a snack!

On Sunday, I competed in the CATS Sprint Triathlon in Conway.  The race was held at Lake Beaverfork and began at 8AM.  I wasn't able to go down early on Saturday and needed to do packet pickup on race morning.  It was so great that they actually offered race day packet pickup! There were four of us in town for the race including my friend Anjeanette and father/son duo Brent and Cole.  Anjeanette and I drove down together and shared a hotel room.  I had horrible race nerves and wasn't able to sleep the night before the race.

Race morning was a little cool and we had to break out the GPS to find the race site.  The location of our hotel was very close to the lake but we had to take a couple of goofy turns and it all seemed so confusing in the dark and on 4 hours of sleep! We pulled in and got parked and as we were walking towards the registration ran into Brent and Cole who beat us there by just a few minutes.  Check in went quickly and we were all done by 6:30 with the race not starting until 8:00. 

We proceeded to transition and got our bikes situated.  Brent and Cole had already picked bike racks and we chose a different rack that we thought would be easier to locate coming out of the water.  Below is a little comparison of my transition set up and another racer's.  Yep, that is a chair in transition!

We sat in the transition area for a little while before the pre-race meeting.  I was struggling to perk up and find some energy.  I contemplating curling up on the concrete for a little nap but decided that probably wasn't the best idea.  After the race meeting, we headed down to the swim beach.  The females were in the 3rd swim wave so we had some time to hang out.  AJ and I overheard some outstanding swim advice...if you breathe too much you'll cramp up! That cracked us up and we passed it along to Brent so that he could also enjoy a pre-race laugh.  For all three waves I noticed a lot of people lining up on the diagonal to the swim buoy.  I like to swim straight line to the buoy so I was really annoyed when people came swimming at me from the side since they weren't correcting to the line.  The swim was uneventful and went pretty well. 

I got on the bike and headed out of the transition area.  The bike course was an out-and-back that had some gentle rolling hills along the way.  It was fun to just push when I could and try to pass people when possible.  The course wasn't closed to traffic and there were a couple times when the cars were slowed on the road and I had to pass them on the right.  I didn't like that and felt very nervous passing them but couldn't slow down since it was a RACE!

I came off the bike and headed out on the run...squeaky shoes and all! The run included a short section through a baseball park complex.  The run was also an out-and-back and had a couple of small hills.  I was glad to see there were two water stops because the temps had warmed up and it was actually toasty during the sunny portions of the run.  It was fun to see my friends and get to cheer them on during the run.  I finished up the race feeling like I had a little left in the tank and probably should have run faster.  Other than that, I was really happy with my performance.

Here's a picture hint...I'm holding a medal!
My race time was 1hr 31 min 52 sec.  The race was a 500m swim, 15mi bike, and 3.2mi run.  (Not sure why there was the extra 1/10th on the run!) I was really nervous going into the race and wanted to do well.  I had entered in the Athena division and the awards were announced in a random order.  My age group was announced and I would have smoked the competition...and I had no clue who was in the Athena so I was second guessing what I had entered!  AJ's age group was next and she won it! They then moved into some of the men's age group awards and Cole won his age group. 

The race director realized he had skipped Clydesdale and Athena so he went back to those divisions.  He started with third place and my time was faster, then second place and it wasn't me...you got it...I won the Athena Division!!! Finally, we were waiting for Brent's age group to be announced.  He was expecting second place and we were all excited for him when he placed first! Not bad for our group and we were all excited.  We celebrated by stopping at WhattaBurger in Russellville on the way home. 
Four First Place Finishes: Cole, Me, Anjeanette, and Brent


  1. OMG, how exciting!! Congrats on a terrific race!!

  2. Great job!! Your Athena division success is making me want to do a tri!

  3. Woohoo! Congrats on your win! That is awesome!