T2 was really quick because all I had to do was take off my helmet, rack my bike, put on my fuel belt and grab the sunglasses and watch I’d meant to put on during T1. I hustled back out and started on the run. My goal was to not worry too much about speed, but to try to jog the whole thing with no walk intervals. I didn’t quite achieve that, as the run course started out with that same damn hill. However, I managed to only walk briefly on those uphills and was able to keep at a steady jog the rest of the time. The run was great because it gave me time to really look at my surroundings and be present with my fellow triathletes. We got to go out and back over the St. John’s bridge, which was phenomenal.
On the bike and run I discovered that Triathlon Gina is a lot like Drunk Gina – I love EVERYONE and I need to tell them. I had compliments and high-fives for everyone, and a big stupid grin on my face the whole time (seriously, I wish I were exaggerating; I have this goofy smile in all the official pictures). I felt joyful.
When I was coming back into Cathedral Park, I started looking around for Alex (he’s really good at finding me, and at race logistics in general; during the LA Marathon he met up with us four or five times). I didn’t see him. This was because I had CRUSHED IT – my run time was a full five minutes faster than I’ve ever run any 5k. I crossed the finish line hearing them announce my name and home city, and they handed me my medal. I felt exhilarated and powerful.
We have some awesome friends in Portland, none of whom have ever steered me wrong when it comes to food or booze. We went to Dick’s Kitchen for some well-deserved burgers and beer.
Back in LA, I’m already searching for my next triathlon. I was happy to discover that I biked farther (and therefore faster!) than I thought; I believed I was doing a 20km ride, but it was actually 26km, so I was averaging about 15 miles per hour. And while I wasn’t sore at all the next day, Tuesday my calves were really feeling it, and Wednesday my hamstrings were on strike. It was all worth it though – I’M A TRIATHLETE!