Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Transition Times

At first glance this may look like a random shot of a transition mid-race. If you look closely in the middle of this picture you will see an athlete sitting down on the ground.

Who might this unknown athlete be? It appears to be some engineer who signed up for the 2000 Trilogy Triathlon a mere week before because he and his friend thought it would be fun. They had fun but with only one swim and one run in "training", these two warriors were pretty tired during the race.

The unknown guy in the picture above sat down in both T1 & T2, as did his friend. In T1 he put on a bike jersey and gloves. In T2 he swapped his bike jersey for a t-shirt and added Umbros to be sure nobody spotted him running in bike shorts.

When a fellow athlete came running into transition she mentioned that she wished she had time to sit down and he jokingly replied, "Why not, you can too." After all, there was plenty of space.

His wife, who was too scared to attempt a triathlon without knowing how to swim, sat by the side and captured this picture. She got up enough courage to try one a year later.

As I'm sure you might have guessed these two have done a few triathlons since then. By 2004 the couple had each finished an Ironman, but some things did not change. In transition of his first Ironman the husband sat down to chat with one of his co-workers, who was also entered in the race. After a few minutes of discussing the swim they realized they still had a long race ahead of them so left left transition and continued on their way to their Ironman finish.

For the record, this unknown guy does go through transitions quickly at times. After all, he and his wife have finished within seconds of each other in multiple races, transitions do matter sometimes.

I've heard stories of people taking a nap in transition or visiting the medical tent before continuing on.

What about you... do you have any humorous transition stories? Have you ever spent a long time in transition?



Slingshot said...

I remember hearing a story of a woman at Danskin (doing her first tri) who sat down in T1 and pulled out a piece of chocolate cake. She said to a curious person nearby "Thats the farthest I've ever swam, and I earned this!". :) I figure everyone races for different reasons, so what the heck.

BTW I still sit down to change my shoes at T1, I found the bending over dizziness or the falling off the bike putting shoes on while riding hurt my times more!


Elliott at Austin Bike Blog said...

I did my first half IM a few years ago and was suffering terribly from saddle sores going into the race. I've found Assos chamois cream the only thing to get me through, and it is exhilarating if your jump in the water with it on to say the least. Well, there was no way I was going to ride 56 miles without my Assos so Iran to put some on in the port-a-potty.

The day of the race was my 30th birthday, so the announcer made a big deal about it when I got out of the water and kept talking about me and telling people to look for me coming out of transition. I didn't think the john stop took that long, but the announcer got impatient and started talking about how I was sitting down to have a burger and shake before heading out on the bike! I was read faced to say the least.