One thing about watching a triathlon is that if you’re not watching a specific competitor then you’re trying to keep track of who might be doing what at any given time. And chances are you’re going to miss a lot of what is going on. Such was the case on Sunday. We arrived too late to see the first competitors swim and I was so busy watching the biking and running transition that I missed the younger groups swim. I did manage to get some photos before the swim and the water looked quite calm.
The start of the race begins with the swim, 1500m or 750m. The competitors can swim in any style they want, even doggie paddle. There were buoys set up to show the swimmers where to go. Most competitors will run into the water, swim as fast as they can and then run to the bike transition once the swim is complete.
The bikes were positioned on the parking lot of Playa Arenal. This is called a transition point. The competitors change into their cycling gear; helmet, shoes and sometimes they will add shorts and arm sleeves. Then they mount their bikes a bike 20km or 40 km. I noticed that some of the competitors didn’t wear any shoes at all, they simply strapped their feet into the pedals and off they went. There were cones all through town marking the bike route and some of the access to the side roads were blocked. But Calle Principal was open and drivers were going around the bikers. The riders passed through the village, through Limon and toward La Cabeza.
When the competitors completed the bike part they transitioned between the biking to running. They completed either a 5km or 10km distance. There seemed to be a little confusion as to the running route and some of the marshals weren’t paying attention when the runners were coming. The runners were to keep to the right towards the boat dock and some went to the left and had to be grabbed back.
We left before all the competitors were in. The cloud cover had gone and the sun was beaming hot and we were hot, tired and hungry. And we weren’t even competing. Kudos to all who were out there in the bright and sunny day.
I’ll leave you with a quote from a great Canadian athlete:
It’s important to know that at the end of the day it’s not the medals you remember. What you remember is the process – what you learn about yourself by challenging yourself, the experiences you share with other people, the honesty the training demands – those are things nobody can take away from you whether you finish twelfth or you’re an Olympic Champion. ~ Silken Laumann ~