Today, in my first Duathlon ever,-the Wenatchee “du”-I won last place. My goal was x2 to not stop and to finish.
It was a 3 mile run, 18 mile bike, 3 mile run. Took me about 2.8 hrs ( I think).
From the start I puttered in last place, behind one of the females. There were a total of about only 50 competitors.

I was the only amateur. @ 1.5 miles into the run, I was about 5 yds behind 2nd to last place. At the last 200 yards I was able to pass him-a tall stuffed gentleman that looked like me about a year ago.=meatball on a stick. I entered the bike area and fumbled to my bike, put on my helmet and off I went. I was somewhat dizzy (with one ear due to the Acoustic Neuroma removed)-yet PeeWee Hermaned it up the first hill of the 18 mile course while meatball on a stick cruised past me on a nice roadbike. Mine was a big clunky GT mountain bike from the year 2000.

The bike was a struggle. Most of it was hilly and a very killer hill at the half turn around point. I thought I was lost, heading off course until I noticed a sherrif behind me escorting me through the turnback point. It was all down hill from there and I cruised back-expecting the whole way for racers to be already packing up and driving back home. I did see 3 cars with bikes on them pass and wave me on, “Keep it up!” one shouted. Near the end of the course, a police car was in front of me, and one in back, joining me for my last few miles. Felt like I was in a parade. I arrived safely and noticed most were done yet a few runners were fumbling into the finish line. I still had a 1.5 mile run to go.

An old coworker named Penny belted out my name like a trumpeting elephant. “way TO GO MARCO”-the soundwaves ricocheting off my one ear drum (deaf on left) and almost knocking me off my bike. I parked, and with stroke like motions-took off my helmet, mumbled something like “yeaah”-and bowlegged “ran walked” again-another 3 miles.

I passed others coming back from the run 1.5 mile marker, wishing that I was just about to finish like them-and yes there was ol meatball on a stick-probably about 2 miles ahead of me. Near the end I decided to save some energy for a lame sprint limp to the end until I turned a corner-knowing that people would be line of sight with me. I could not hear any cheering until I got to the finish line.-Yet I found out that they were cheering for the awards ceremony-not for me. about three people accidentally saw me, and let out a whoop-the awards crowd turned and applauded as I crossed the finish line panting.

I did not stop during the race. I finished.

Take all the 50 something racers vestibular balance away and hearing in one ear-give them a mountain bike-and I would have placed first!

FOTOS:

Me there running at the start; already in last place. I was trailing a 4 foot obese female.
Those are not muscles. Wind is filling my jacket.

This is the second leg, probably into the 2nd mile of the 18 mile bike race. I had to use my clunky mountain bike and “Peewee Hermaned” it all the way.

The Bike, @ the third mile marker the lead racer passed me as he was almost finished with his 18 miles. Near mile fifteen, race workers were taking down the arrow direction signs. They thought I was a casual biker out on a spring ride. They saw my race number on my back and apologized. Near the end, two police officers, one in front, one in back escorted me through the few stop lights so I would not get run over. I felt like an elderly lady being escorted across the street by some helpful boy scouts. I was almost to the finish line. Again, that is wind in my jacket. I felt as if I were a kite ready to be blown into the sea, lost forever.

The Finish:

Again, As I mentioned before, I thought the small crowd was giving me a victory HURRAH! My blurred vision focused on the group near the awards stage, their backs to me, applauding and cheering the winners with medals instead.

I think the lady on my left there was about to break out the defibrillator. She looks as if she worked as a coroner at a crime scene. A coworker mentioned that I had “grown boob” at the end of the race. Near the last two miles of the run, I took off a windbreaker and stuffed it into a chest pocket. That explains the left boob, the right one is caused by the goofy camera angle, I hope…

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