Ryan Hudson is a proud member of District Multisport, in for his third season.
While I was finishing my transition set-up and admiring the nutrition of the guy next to me -- a Powerade, coconut water *and* a full jar of pickle juice -- it was announced the race would be starting 15 minutes earlier than scheduled.
Fortunately, like most triathletes, I am quick to adjust and never have a problem with meticulously laid out plans suddenly changing.
On the plus side, I didn't need much time for a warm-up, since the 85-degree Chickahominy River made the swim more akin to a spa day (complete with nearly knee-deep mud baths at the end).
A dropped gel and a dropped chain was hardly the ideal start to the bike, but I managed to turn it around for a new PR ("Dropped Gel? Dropped Chain? Drop the Hammer." Is that a t-shirt?), and even got to see Jenn along the way (she suggested I go catch Darren; I appreciated her optimism, to be sure).
Feeling great, I was set for a fast transition and a flat run ...
Run without socks, they said. It will cut down your T2 time, they said ... Look, life is all about learning experiences, and on Sunday, I learned that opting to go sockless means your mind will venture into new territory, like, "Well, I suppose I could just run the final two miles barefoot ..." I ultimately declined the way of the Tarahumara and instead channeled my inner hockey player*, laced-up my shoes tighter, and trudged over the bridge to get fourth place in my age group, which is definitely a very cool and not at all frustrating place to finish.
*I have never played hockey; I can barely even ice skate
As always, Rev3 put on a great race -- transition, course markings, volunteers, family atmosphere, etc. If you haven't done one of their races before, I'd recommend giving them a "tri." (Do you get it? "Tri" instead of "try." Ya know, like the sport?)