Finishing is not the same as racing

I raced this weekend. Actually, I finished. That would be more accurate.

I wouldn't really call what I was doing racing. I was more concerned about being sure "DNF/DQ" would not show up next to my name. Especially after I got kicked in the face while swimming. (Ouch!) But since I signed up for the event, I got ranked as though I was racing.

My stats aren't ... um ... good. I came in 33rd out of 37 women in the 25-29 age division. I'm 139th out of 202 women. Overall, I'm 340th out of 439 people. Although not impressive, I'm not discouraged. I'm intrigued. This is the comparision, the competition I'm up against. It is not only reflective of myself, but of the condition of othwers. And even if I did poor or well this time, it doesn't necessarily guarantee the same kind of placing at the next event.

What seems to matter more is the overall time.

My overall time was 1:28:07. I am actually very proud of that. Eleven weeks ago I had guestimated it would take me at least 1:45:00 to finish. I came in 17 minutes sooner than I expected. Yea!

The breakdown of times are really interesting ... I wasted ~10 minutes in transitions, and way too many minutes on "swimming," so I come away with some serious numbers to help me improve weak areas. And with numbers and times like these, improvement is the only way I can go! In some ways, I really wish I'd done a Tri "cold-turkey" just so I would have an excellent assessment measure to gauge all future progress against. But then, I may never have stuck with it.

It's strange ... I've been tracking weights, distances, times, etc. during training, and those are pretty good measures by which to see progress. But there's something sexy about the race results. Something titillating. Something so factual that you can't ignore it. And now I want more race numbers to record, to crunch, to seek elusive winning answers. I almost think I could make a full time job of it! But then, I'd have to be racing full time ...