Friday, December 21, 2012

The Strangest Triathlon Dream Ever

First of all... with my past as a parish priest in Southbury, CT, and my history of working with and supporting law enforcement officers, I am sure there are those who believe I am obligated to opine on the Newtown tragedy. 

I have decided to not blog about it, at the moment.  I said what I've been able to say in private circles, and what is being said in public circles on the Episcopal Cafe and on friends' blogs and in the media is enough for me to process right now.  

As the gun control debate ramps up in volume, I have only this to say:  Everyone can take pilot lessons to learn how to fly.  Not everyone should be allowed to fly a fighter jet.  

On to things triathlon.

I spent part of today puttering around town.  A friend helped me cement shut the tiny rip in my wetsuit, so that is all taken care of.  I must have torn it at Leadman.  It was my first race with volunteer strippers.  Man, I love the strippers.  They make getting the wetsuit off SO EASY.

For the record, strippers at a big race are not what you are thinking:  no G-strings, no spangles, no poles, no feathers.  They are fully dressed volunteers who help racers as they come out of the water.  Leadman was so much faster than I was used to, so I felt like I was grabbed, zipped, thrown on the ground, peeled, picked up, and sent on my way at lightning speed.

After I got home, I discovered the small rip less than an inch long.  No biggie.  It is a quick fix.

After that errand, I took my husband to LifeCycle to hang out.  I am planning to put aerobars on my bike this winter, so I was checking out what they had.  And then cooing over the tri bikes. I love my BMC, though, so I plan to spend this season competing on my roadie, with aerobars.

Anyway, LifeCycle has started dealing Gyst bags!  M gave me a Gyst a few years ago,
Christmas present!  (Hand still in therapy from the whole sad bike crash episode, which also explains my hair.  You can't style hair one-handed.   Bangs and layers should just be banned from my head.)  

and I adore my fancy transition bag.  I have the duffle.  It's SO organized.  It is easily one of my favorite triathlon things ever.  I can fit ALL my gear into my duffle, easily.  For bricks, sometimes I just take out the little mat.  Most of the season, I keep it packed up with my gear so it's pretty easy to grab and go.  In fact, my duffle can hold: a spare bag folded up at the bottom, two large bags, seatbag, bike tools, computer, bento box, food, drink, change of clothes including spare undies, after-race shoes (I wear crocs, which are hideous, but so good on my poor swollen feetsies!), headbands, spare hair elastics, swim gear, bike helmet, bike shoes, running shoes, race belt, sunscreen, chamois cream, sunglasses, race hat, two sets of bike gloves, arm warmers, arm coolers, and a bike jacket.

Fresh out of the box.  I pack it a little differently now...

The only thing that DOESN'T always fit is my wetsuit, which I usually wad up into its own wetsuit bag.  In fact, the only thing that would make my duffle PERFECT would be a wetsuit compartment.  I understand they made a tri-specific bag that DOES have wetsuit space, but I love my duffle.  At some point, perhaps I should try out the tri-specific bag.  But man, I love my Gyst duffle.  I gushed a little when I saw them at LifeCycle.

Anyway... here is the strange tri dream I had last night.  In the dream, I was racing Nations.  I woke up in a dark race hotel room, which I found I was sharing with four other girls.  No one knew what wave they were in or when their start time was.  I started unpacking my Gyst duffle, because even in my dreams, I apparently take my favorite bag, only to discover I had not put my race numbers on ANYTHING.  Anyone who knows me and my Extreme Checklist knows that I organize stuff at least four times the night before a race, and putting on race numbers is a precious little ritual!

I was slapping my number onto my bike helmet and stretching my swim cap over my bushy messy hair.  (I usually braid it for races, because it's so bushy, so this is ANOTHER problem!)  I was # 6.  I didn't have time to put my race number on my belt, so I figured I'd do that in T1.  I started into the water, threw my helmet at the water exit, and started swimming.  By the way, no one leaves their bike helmet at the water exit!  We leave them at the bike, at our T1

Except I couldn't go ANYWHERE.  No matter what I did, everyone was passing me.  So I flipped over and started doing the backstroke.  Just like in real life, the backstroke is my secret weapon.  I started whizzing along and came out in the top few people of my age group.  I ran to T1... only to discover that the #6 bike was not mine!  I started searching the racks for my BMC, which I call "The Badass Mountain Climber", or simply "The Badass".  No bike.  I look at # 9, thinking maybe the bike rackers had gotten it racked wrong.  The race organziers start trying to help me find the bikes, and make me look at every single 6 and 9 bike in the football-field sized transition area.  609, 906, 606, 909, 999, 666, 536, 539, everything.  No bike.

Badass, where are you?

At this point, I looked at my watch.  Usually T1 takes me 2.5-6 minutes, depending on how large transition area is.  My watch showed me that I had been in T1 for 14:30, at that point.  I was getting frantic.

Part of the T1, in the dream, was inside a hotel.  I ran into the concierge, a tall Italian named Martino.  He looked a little like M, except he had a large handlebar mustache and a thicky meaty Italian accent.  Dashingly, he started trying to help me.  He offered me rollerblades.  He offered me one of those outdoor ellipse machines.  He tried to convince the race makers to let me do the ride indoors on a hotel stationary bike.  He got a local farm to lend me a cow to ride, except that I'd have to milk the cow first.  He handed me two enormous camelback bladders, explaining that I could easily fit the cow milk into there, and then the cow situation would work.  I went running out of T1, Martino the Concierge chasing me with the cow-sized Camelback bladders.

Finally, I ran into my own personal savior: Leslie Knope.

Come on, admit it.  If everything were going wrong, you too would want Leslie Knope on your side!  She was able to find that my bike had been delivered to the hotel, having been mis-directed.  She and I were sprinting through the streets of DC, which were growing upwards and changing direction like Howarts' hallways, seeking the hotel so I could get my bike so I could try to salvage this race.

And that was when I woke up.

Small wonder that I was starving for a nice bunch of biscuits and vegan gravy for breakfast!

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