For some reason Kiwi's like to give places completely misleading names. There was nothing "scorching" about the bay at 7:00am in the morning. Despite participating in various team triathlons in Canberra I have never attempted to do one by myself. So I decided that this summer I would give one a go and conveniently enough Scorching Bay is about 5 km from our house and the course is where we often ride, so I knew what I was letting myself in for. Unfortunately I haven't been doing much training - I think I have managed about 3 swims and 3 runs in the last fortnight and one long ride (on top of my normal commuting)! I figured the lack of training would be a good excuse if I didn't do very well and I would use this first one as a practise run, especially with regard to transitioning between the different disciplines. I also opted for the medium or sprint length triathlon - which is 750 m swim, 20 km ride and 5 km run.
The weather was pretty much perfect with no wind and no rain and a flat calm sea - apart from the ferry wake that went through when I was swimming! Standing at the start was a little nerve wrecking as there were a lot of very fit looking people who all seemed to know what they were doing. It was good to get into the water and start swimming, and wasn't as cold as I was expecting. It was certainly nicer to swim in than Lake Burley Griffin in Canberra. Swimming in a wetsuit in salt water was also very buoyant and I felt like I was totally floating on the surface. I am still not a big fan of being surrounded by other people kicking their legs and swinging their arms around in close proximity! I survived the swim and wasn't quite the last out of the water. I did have a few issues with getting my wetsuit off in transition and had to ask a random spectator to un-velcro me!
I set off on the bike, which was probably the most fun part of the race. I felt pretty strong and I was happy to be drinking some water to take away the taste of the salt water that I had swallowed in the swim. I found myself overtaking quite a few of the other women on the ride, especially up the hills and when we were heading into the very weak southerly.
Unfortunately all those women I had overtaken on the ride proceeded to overtake me on the run. It might not have helped that I couldn't find my stuff at the transition and faffed around a bit. I also found it pretty hard to run initially as my calves felt tight after riding and it took a while for them to loosen up.
My aim was to complete the whole thing in 1 hour and 30 minutes - my final time was 1 hour 33 minutes - not too bad as I hadn't estimated any time for transitions! However, plenty of room for improvement.... so I might have to give another one a go. I'm not sure I will be attempting the full length triathlon any time soon - a 10 km run at the end just seems like an impossible task, 5 km was painful enough.