After a month of Participating the 70.3 Cobra Ironman in the Philippines, I participated another triathlon here in Korea.
While the distance was shorter compared to the first, my difficulty was not really about the race itself but on the logistics. Since I do not own a car here, I thought at first of taking the inter-city train; however, I have learned that bringing your bike in the train is only allowed at night. I felt a bit hopeless at that time, but thanks to my friend who called the inter-city bus line and mentioned that bike is ok but it will be placed where they place the luggage. I was a bit hesitant at first because I am not certain about it. I have a number of thoughts about my bike being damaged during the trip; however, since it’s the only option I had, I took the risk. I was full of anxiety but I was so surprised that the bike remained intact after reaching Kyungju. I didn’t notice they had a mat that could prevent movement under the bus. The taxi driver knows the location of the event so it was a relief too.
I thought that my ordeal will be over but I was wrong. Due to my poor communication skills in Korean, I was unable to follow simple instructions that made my day so difficult. Like where is the bike checking area, where is the transition area. Thankfully, there was a guy that in spite of not understanding each other, he was kind enough to guide me through. He even helped look for a place to stay at that night and offered transportation the next day for the event.
Race day! I somehow have more confidence than before, and since we are only swimming in the lake, we had our wetsuit on; I was of course positive on the outcome of the event. Contrary to what I did before, I swam away from the buoy this time for me to be away from the crowd. The course was two laps that we have to get out of the water and return to the lake. Surprisingly, I completed the swim course at 36 my best swimming time in the Olympic Course.
The bike race was okay; four laps. I struggled a bit due to the hilly route. There was even a part of it that almost made me walk, but I tried not to, and it somehow worked. Then it rained a lot on the 2nd lap that made the course challenging. I slipped in one downhill that disengaged my cleats from the pedal – Fortunate enough I did not fall, and decided to be more conservative; better safe than sorry.
The last leg – Running is somehow fine for me. Since I lost 5 kilos from my last race, I felt a bit lighter and I was able to convince myself not to walk and run at an acceptable speed. The rain momentarily stopped and it made me see the view of the lake in Kyungju and it was indeed very scenic and lovely adding to my enjoyment.
I completed the race at 3hours 21mins. Out of 80 people in my age group, I ranked 66th. I managed to improve my record by 21 min from my last Daegu Olympic triathlon which is 3hours 42 mins; last time I remember I was the 2nd from the last who completed out of 885 participant, so it’s really a milestone for me.
I signed up for a couple of race before the year ends. I am very hopeful to accomplish it good standing. I guess I just have to work harder.