What do you mean the swim was cancelled?

In 12 hours I will start the Portland Triathon, er… well… no scratch that, in 12 hours I will start the Portland DUathlon.  Yes, that’s right a duathlon – biking and running only. The swim was cancelled.  There is a layer of “green growth” on the Willamette River and the river managers can’t determine if it is harmless or not, so the swim was cancelled.  All of my training and panicking over the swim has been for naught… I can’t decide if I’m relieved or if I’m disappointed. On one hand I don’t have to squeeze into an impossibly snug wetsuit and battle upstream with hundreds of other racers like a school of homebound salmon.  But on the other hand,  this was going to be the year I checked the Portland Tri off my bucket list and dammit I’m tired of it being there.  I can’t check it off even if I do finish the race tomorrow because regardless of what my fancy new tech shirt says, it ISN’T a triathlon.   So friends, wish me luck tomorrow as I run-bike-run my way a few steps closer to completing the Portland Triathlon.



That’s what friends are for…

Stevie Wonder sings an entire song about what friends are for… but I don’t need a song to explain what friends are for, I think I can do it in a blog post. Friends are the family you choose. Friends bring out the best in you. Friends are for telling you the things you really need to hear. Yes, that’s right – I think friends have a responsibility to tell you things you need to hear. Such as, “You have food in your teeth. No, not there, other tooth. Okay ya, but there is still some there, a little towards your gumline… got it!” They should also tell you about wardrobe malfunctions, “Hey! Your zipper is down!” or for that matter they sometimes are better off just fixing it themselves “Your tag is sticking out in back, hold still while it tuck it in.” Friends tell us stuff we need to hear. They tell us about the stress-free things like “you have lipstick on your teeth” and the awkward things “you were kinda bitchy!”

It is my belief that friends also have an obligation to tell you when they’ve noticed you’ve made an oversight. For example if a friend was to notice that you’ve signed up for a Triathlon with the impression the swim was a.5 mile when in fact is was to be a 1.0 mile swim, a friend should point out that slight oversight!. A friend who reads that detail in your blog and notices the error should then point it out. Am I right here??????

(Insert large sigh here…) Yes, I signed up for the Portland Tri and I thought the swim was .5 miles so this whole time I’ve been training for a .5 mile swim. (Insert F word here). Last weekend my very good friend Leanne came to visit and over casual conversation says “You know it’s a 1.0 mile swim right? I mean I know you blogged about a half mile swim, but that was a type-o, right?”

No it wasn’t a type-o.

Me: What? No, its twice the distance of a sprint so it is ½ a mile

Leanne: Ya, well the swim in a sprint can vary, but you signed up for an Olympic and it is a full mile.

Me: No… seriously? No…

At this point I started Googling and yes, I signed up for the Olympic and yes it is a 1.0 mile swim. (Insert F word again).

Leanne: Ya, I thought about saying something, I even had an message typed out, but then I figured, eh… she knows…

Me: What? No!!! You tell me things like this! What am I going to do? I’m going to drown! (insert teary eyes and mild panic attack here)

Leanne: (Downshifting into the “you’ll be fine” gear) You’ll be fine! You’ve been swimming, you’ll take it easy and you’ll be fine! How much have you been swimming? How far can you swim?

Me: 37 down and backs

Leanne: (unsuccessfully stifling a chuckle) 37 what? What is a ‘down and back?’

Me: You know swim down to one end of the pool and back. A down and back. 37 times. No problem.

Leanne: How big is the pool?

Me: Big… I don’t know how big.

Leanne: BIG big, or smallish big?

Me: Like medium big… whatever 24 hour fitness has… oh my gosh… I’m going to drown. I can’t believe you didn’t tell me I did this!

The conversation went on like this for awhile until I decided to call 24 Hr Fitness where Sam at the front desk informed me he’s “pretty sure” the pool is 25 yards long. Leanne did some quick math and here is where I stand training wise…

The swim is 1.5 Kilometers

The pool is 25 yards long

1 yard is .9144 meters

25 yards is 22.86 meters

One “down and back” is 45.72 meters

37 “down and backs” is 1691 meters

1691 meters IS (drum roll please…) 1.69 kilometers

WHOO HOO! By some weird twist of fate I have been unknowingly training for the correct distance without knowing it. Thank GOD!

There are two lessons in this story. First, always read tt and lhe details and know what you are signing up for. Second, friends should tell each other the things they need to hear and sooner, rather than later, is always better.

This is Leanne and I two years ago at the Portland Triathlon 🙂

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