Life in the Fast Lane


New Year, New Adventure

By 10:56 AM , , , , , , , ,

Last Monday, I turned a year older. Unlike previous years, this was probably the quietest, the one with the least "fanfare".

On the day itself, I did the following: replied to greetings on social media and via SMS, Skyped with an aunt who lives in Canada, had my favorite truffle pasta for lunch, did a swim workout, and had dinner with my family. Nothing grand because I was saving my energy for the following day (we ended up shooting for 21 hours).

Lorenzo's Truffle Cream by Mamou. Oh yeah.

Red Velvet birthday cupcake c/o Mamou. Thank you!

Solo swim workout at Metro Club in preparation for an upcoming aquathlon (more on that further down).

Our light spread at home (no one wanted a heavy dinner): cheese and cold cuts platter from Santi's, cheese fondue (my request), and roasted asparagus with Hollandaise sauce.

Turtle pie from Purple Oven. Yum!

With my sisters who are also Februarians: Cooky (Feb. 5) and Anna (Feb. 15).

Maybe it's because this birthday season is the busiest I've ever been (I haven't been able to plan something with any of my friends yet because I haven't found a free weekend to do so), but I'm kind of enjoying this quiet, no-fuss type of birthday. I'm already happy whenever someone remembers me with a simple greeting on Facebook; even more when I don't get to interact with that person regularly.

I must really be getting old.

The one thing, though, that made this new year already exciting is the first-ever aquathlon (the annual Ateneo Aquathlon) that I joined two days ago.

For those who may not be familiar with the term, an aquathlon is a multisport discipline consisting of a swim leg followed by a run leg. To some, it's their precursor to a triathlon; to existing triathletes, it's a way of challenging themselves in both the swim and run legs without the comfort of a bike leg.

To me, I wanted to join because I needed to feel how it would be to compete in a multisport setting: pacing oneself in one discipline, transitioning, then following up with another discipline. In due time, I do hope to finally join a sprint triathlon (I've been saying this for almost two years!), but I'm about to buy a racer bike. Hopefully I'll have it by May.

So anyway, come Sunday, I was a combination of excitement and nerves. I wanted to get things over and done with. Unfortunately, my heat had been delayed due to timing chip issues in previous heats. I was worried that I would have to run sometime close to noon.

Getting body marked with my race number. After being briefed on the swim routine and the run route, we were asked to put our running gear in baskets (running singlet/jersey, race bib, running shoes, and other gear), which were then placed by the poolside.

Waiting for the swim leg. Thanks to my sponsors: Arena for my suit, Speedo for my cap, and TYR for my goggles (JK, I bought all these myself!).

Check out how confused I look here. I think someone had already kicked me on the face at this point.

I just made sure to catch up. Thankfully, swimming has always been my forte, so it was a relatively easy leg.

My game plan was to swim as fast as I could without getting tired, since I felt I would need a head start for the run leg. Between swimming and running, I really don't consider myself a fast runner even 'til today.

At the end of every lap, we'd have to go under the wave runners, and swim back. This meant an S-like motion around the pool.

Upon finishing the last lap, we'd have to run back to the first lane and repeat the process again and again and again.

When we finished all those laps (I was the third one out of the pool, by God's grace!), we had to run out of the pool and look for our baskets by the side of the pool. All we had to do was remove our swim caps and goggles and place all our running gear on.

It was 11:30 at this point. I was worried about overheating during the run. Plus, I forgot to place my iPod (I use Nike+) in my basket. I had no way to monitor my run leg.

After downing one cup of water, I grabbed another cup and poured water on my head to cool down. I had an incline to conquer and a few kilometers on the road under the midday sun.

At the finish line. Thank You, Lord! Officially an "aquathlete", if that term is really used.

My sister Cooky, who was my photographer for the day, told me to strike a "finisher's pose". Haha!

Thanks for coming and for cheering! (My mom and dad also showed up; it felt a throwback to my childhood days of almost weekly swim meets).

Still waiting for the official results to be posted (no idea how I did in both legs, especially the run leg since I didn't have my iPod or a watch), but it doesn't matter. The important thing was that I finished, by God's grace, and that I had an awesome first multisport experience. Actually, I'm already on the lookout for what to join next!

All these, coupled with this new milestone for the family = a pretty wonderful start to this new year. 

Thank You, Lord!

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