Leading up to the event, the weather was looking horrendous, a potential for a wintery mix and an almost certain guarantee of some sort of precipitation during the entire event. with a 9am race start time and a recommended time to be on the grounds due to traffic by the even organizers of 7:30am, I awoke pre-dawn at 6:30 in the morning to make my self a small breakfast and try to actually be awake by the start of the race. I'm sure I've mentioned how much I am NOT a morning person. To add insult to injury, a glance outside showed a constant light rain. Great. Unamused I slowly got dressed hoping for a call from KB saying she wasn't doing this in such adverse conditions, but alas, she arrived at the house promptly at 7:15am and we loaded up all of our requisite gear and headed out to Biltmore.
Brrrrrrrr. I realize there are a lot of places much colder than here, but I am NOT a cold weather person either. Pair that with being 8am, and you can imagine how grumpy a Joshie this can make. The weather gods were nice enough to grant us one small reprieve, the rain had stopped. I need to send them a thank you card and on a side note, also remind them that it's Spring, that means the weather is supposed to be getting WARMER, not colder... Jerks. Anyway, we signed in, got our timing chips and then immediately headed back to the car to sit in our last moments of warmth before we headed out on our first ever duathlon. With minutes to go before the start, we emerged from the car to our long line of growing spectators (Jess, Spankye, and Dacia) signed a few autographs, went for a brief but brisk walk to spool up the legs, and then lined up for the start.
The bike portion of the race are where KB and I definitely excelled, I can't recall ever getting passed. This consisted if two laps, an "outer lap" of approximately 7 miles and then an "inner lap" of about 4. We mashed the pedals up a gradual gravel climb away from the river followed by a fun drop back down for the first lap on a portion of Biltmore that is typically closed to guests. Absolutely beautiful farmland, no wonder they want to keep it to themselves. Back around for the second lap, there apparently was some confusion as to the turn for the inner lap for some of the top competitors (read your race packet and course outline!), but by the time that we had made it around for our second laps, everything had been worked out. this much abbreviated lap meant that the distance to reach the top of the climb was also much shorter and steeper. This is where I had my first notion that maybe, just maybe, my legs were getting tired, but with the fun down hill again, I took a conservative descent in preparations for the final run and didn't think about it again.
I finished up at 1:48:16, just off my hoped for 1:45, but I'll take it! KB wasn't far behind, just off the 2 hour mark at 2:03:18. That a Girl! So while I immediately swore off anything like this again post race, after a few day of recovery, ok, I might could be persuaded to do this again. many thanks to all our fans that came out (Jess, Spankye, and Dacia) and to the crew who put on the race. I'll probably be out there again next year!