photo by Andy Jessop

This was my first race of the season. It was great to finally race and dust off some major cobwebs. I had the itch to race throughout March, but stuck with the plan and waited until the HMB tri.

I did this race last year but it was a different bike and run course. This year, we biked along Highway 1 the entire time, which was fun to do! There weren’t many cars at 7am, just us triathletes and surfers.

The swim was colder than last year… absolutely frigid. It was no warmer than 55-degrees so many people wore a neoprene cap. I felt sorry for those few who had a sleeveless wetsuit on. Fingers, face, and feet all froze as expected. My pinky finger was wandering off away from the rest of my hand and I couldn’t bring it together. It was weird! I talked with others afterwards who had the same problem, and we concluded that this is just an indication of how cold the water was! Overall, swim was nothing spectacular. I just tried to keep moving and couldn’t wait to get out of that water.

Long run to transition. I was hoping my extremities would warm a bit, but that was not the case. I got some feeling in my feet to realize they were hurting stepping on all the little rocks on the pavement!

Since I was in the first wave and one of the first people on the bike course, I knew people wouldn’t be expecting bikers. I was careful of parked cars potentially opening their doors on me and of cars turning before me. We had a slight headwind on the way out, which I was happy to realize when we turned around! I usually start to feel better on the bike a few miles in, but I never felt “good.” I was curious how my legs would respond on the run.

T2 was pretty terrible. I can usually get in and out quick but I still could not move my hands. I struggled with getting my helmet off and running shoes on. I carried my running belt for awhile until I could get my hands to clasp it together!

The run was flat as a pancake. It was up and down the coast – beautiful if you could take the time to look around! I felt like my legs were going to buckle under me the whole time. I tried to keep my focus despite my body’s resistance to keep moving. It’s amazing how the body can just keep going out of habit and training. I was happy to see the finish (when are you not?!)


photo by Stephanie Artis