I have some bad news about this triathlon. It didn't happen for me.
This isn't the first time I've missed a race. In fact, this race was a little doomed from the start. Three years ago it was supposed to be my first triathlon. Then, the morning of the race, it flash flooded. We stood out in the rain in our gear for an hour before they declared that the cycling portion of the race was not safe and the water was too choppy due to the storm. They sent us home.
The next year, I came, I finished, I conquered. I moved on to even bigger and better races, confident in my abilities. This year, I wanted to do this race again for all of the reasons I was excited about on Saturday morning. I went on my run, showered and drove over to Des Moines for packet pickup. No problems there....nice swag (get to that later), uneventful drive. Back to home to lounge for the rest of the day.
That's when the problems started. About 4pm I started to feel a tightness in my chest. By 6pm, it was difficult to swallow because my chest was so tight and the tightness had moved up into my clavicle. At this point, the fiance started to ask questions. Like:
What exactly is tight?
It was the bones in my sternum/ribs/collarbone. Either they were too tight or my organs suddenly expanded and were pressing them out. But really, it just felt like I needed to pop my chest.
Adapted from here
Have you tried stretching?
Yes, I tried a variety of yoga poses...totalling about 20 minutes. I tried taking a warm bath. I tried dynamic stretching. I asked him to press on my back and chest to see if we could just pop something back into place.
Does anything else hurt or feel numb? Are you naseous?
He was worried about a heart attack. Nothing else was wrong. But, I'm telling you, if I have a heart attack at age 26 with as healthy as I try to live, you guys better go after the splenda/aspartame companies. That really is my only vice.
So at this point, all I could do was take an Advil and go to bed. I couldn't even lie down on my back because I felt like I couldn't breathe. I was lying in bed, hellbent on getting up at 4:45 to drive to the triathlon. Then I started thinking about the dangers and consequences...I could definitely bike. That isn't too cardiovascularily taxing for me. I could run, probably slowly, and it might hurt a little bit, but it wouldn't be damaging. The swim was concerning me. I had full range of motion in my arms, but turning my head was painful...and then what if I got kicked/breathed in water, etc. I couldn't get it out of my head that if I had to be rescued during the swim, I would have to sit there for 2 hours before I could leave. The parking lots are part of the race course/transition area, so I would be stuck.
At 4:45, I woke up. My chest still hurt, but luckily swallowing and breathing were easier. I decided that one sprint triathlon was not worth it...I did not feel comfortable attempting the ruckus, crazy open water swim that happens during sprint triathlons.
At least the swag was nice? I mean, this race always does a great job with the takeaway...I've gotten hats, water bottles, backpacks, nice swim goggles and other miscellaneous supplies from this race before. This year it was a super awesome ultra-large pack.
It also came with a nice metal water bottle. I really love those for work because they clip onto my work bag and don't take up too much room.
So, I'm trying to be positive for the rest of the day. I was able to go rock out a brick workout this morning. I still don't think I could swim if I wanted to, but I thought some exercise would loosen things up a little. I completed the bike and run equivalents from the tri I missed this morning. Though my sternum still hurts (the point where the ribs come together and meet), I did easily complete the 12.4 mile bike and 3.1 mile run. My legs felt suprisingly loose after the 12.68 miles ran yesterday. Hopefully this means that the chest reaction was a freak accident...
Time to go about my week. Look for:
Positive, fun recipes and posts
A little bit of science
Summer Goals Recap for June. (I can't believe it's almost July!!!!)
Some reorganization of the blog (hopefully!)
What kind of content do you want to see emphasized on this blog? Come out of the woodwork, you lurkers!