5 of my friends would be going for their very first triathlon in Metasprint. Pure excitement. There were various motives for taking part in Metasprint; to lose weight, been wanting to try one all his life, peer pressure, an agreement made after one too many drinks.… They all made it to the starting line none the less, and everyone crossed the finish line on Sunday.
It was a beautiful Sunday morning, those kind you know it’ll be cool till about 9ish before the blazing sun takes your soul if you’re running outside. Sure I’ve done plenty of runs in this kind of heat, when I laze around in the morning till it’s too hot, and still head out for my run anyway. But to go all out on a 5k in this kind of weather was something I wasn’t prepared for.
Mine started the day before, doing up 2 mini signboards to carry around during the event; nothing fancy, all done up in 2 hours. Headed over to Dave’s place after that to share some advice on preparing their stuff and what to expect, it’ll only be my third race and I’ve still plenty of things to learn on how to better prepare myself on race day.
We all reached pretty early on Sunday and chose a nice spot to set up our transition stuff, there were plenty of space and it was “free seating”, which was great. Transition area was at a grass field so the groundsheet proved itself useful to keep our stuff dry, uneven grounds made the bike stands pretty unstable.
Ready set GO!
After a brief warm up, we were all rearing to go. Suresh lost his goggles and only realised it when he was waiting in the “pen” at the start line; I lost my goggles on my first triathlon as well, but I was lucky to find it just before the start. So lesson learnt, bring an extra pair of goggles. Suresh still managed to complete the race in a decent time, goes to show the kind of mental toughness this guy has.
Horn goes off and the eager ones rush into the water, I made the same mistake of going all out at the swim AGAIN, found myself out of breath and had to slow down a lot more to recover. Underestimated the distance and thought I could just power through 750m, well this goes to show how inexperienced I am at handling the swim section.
The buoys were huge and navigation wasn’t a big problem as compared to the other races I’ve been to. Got out of the water 20mins later together with Eugene and headed to the transition to get our bikes. I thought of doing a sock-less race but decided against it to prevent any potential blisters on my feet, wasted couple of seconds putting on my socks coz my feet was still wet; should’ve used powder!
2 loops along coastal road brings back memories. It all started with Fixpatrix, where we would do a Coastal Road ride almost every Sunday evening, hanging out at Changi V for a while before heading back to ECP. It also reminded me of Megatri where I did 8 loops that seemed like eternity. The bike section went along pretty well, averaging about 34km/h on a nice flat road. Saw a couple of fancy looking bikes, and also quite a number of foldies and mini-velos!
The heat is on! I was just grabbing cups of water and pouring over myself just to cool the body; gosh I wonder how it feels like doing an Ironman distance in this kind of heat. Running has always been my favourite amongst the 3, and my goal was to not let anyone pass me on the run.
Completed the run in 22mins as predicted in my race preparation post. Crossed the finish line at 1:22 feeling as exhausted as I did after 7+hrs in Megatri, sprint distance is really hard work where every second counts. No time to fluff about during transition or take a slow jog after the bike. I don’t think there’s any other sport that would describe a 1.5hr race as a “sprint“.
Kudos to Metasport for doing such a good job organising Metasprint, it has been one of the better races I’ve been to so far.
The rain came in at full force by noon, at this time we were all nice and comfortable in Changi Village gorging down our lunch. It was so much fun racing with friends, you’d definitely meet someone along the way when you’re doing a loop somewhere; it’s always encouraging to see a familiar face when you’re struggling to keep your body from falling apart.
I was really happy for those who completed their very first triathlon, hope it’ll be the first of many races in future.