Once I finished my swim leg, I completely relaxed. I still felt calorie deficient. I still felt so freaking tired. I still felt dehydrated. But I was relaxed.
Legs 32 – 36
After I got out of the lake and enjoyed the most delicious chocolate milk known to man, I waited for Jared to finish his 1200M swim leg. He’s pretty speedy in the water, just like he’s speedy on the bike. So it didn’t take long before Garrett and then Cindi were ready to head out on their respective runs. So the van headed out to support them as the Suburban headed to the start of Jacob’s bike ride. We were almost there.
Garrett, as always, was a rock star on the road. Cindi, by this time, was overheated, overtired, and feeling the effects of the elevation. She handed us a towel and requested that we provide her with cold water on the towel throughout her run. She also let us know that she would be walking her run route. This was fine because we were well ahead of schedule and it wasn’t going to risk our ability to finish within the allotted time. So we followed close behind Don and Sara, and Don used the water from the jug in the van to wet the towel and run it to Cindi. We hop scotched with Cindi throughout her just under 4 mile run. She finished her final leg and climbed back in the van to cool off while Jacob headed off on the bike.
Jacob had 10 miles on the bike with no turns at all. Just a straight shot so everyone headed to his transition point for Sarah’s final run into the stadium.
I was so proud of Sarah. She worked so hard. She was so scared. And she was so strong. Rose Ann wanted to shadow Sarah so we sent the Suburban to the end point to wait for us. Before her first mile was completed, she had run out of water, so we zizzed to a good stopping place and I ran a cold towel to her and we got her some water. We (Don and Sara were also following along so they could help be her sherpa) kept her cool with constantly changing soaked towels/shirts, and kept her water bottles filled with cool water. She did so well. When we got closer to the school – the finish line – We left Sarah and went to park and get ready to run our victory lap around the track and across the final timing strip.
I went down the hill by the track to wait for Sarah. Garrett ran up the hill to watch for her. When he came running down the hill announcing, “She’s coming. She’s coming.” I walked over to the bottom of the hill. Wain, who had been helping Rose Ann with the driving throughout the whole course, was running right alongside his baby sister. When I saw his tender care over her, my eyes immediately welled up with tears. She had a smile on her face that told the whole story about the pride that she felt in what she had accomplished. I recognized the look on her face because it’s the way that I felt after my swim. We were done. There was nothing left to do except run (or walk, as the case may be) the final lap and across the finish line. The whole team: Julie, Melissa, me, Ammon, Garrett, Jacob, Madison, Sarah, Cindi, Jared, and Don walked around the track laughing and giggling and joking and trying to keep Jacob under control.
And then we crossed the final timing chip. As a team. Grateful to be done. Proud of our accomplishment. A bond with each other like something that I’ve not experienced before. We finished.
Start time – 6:59:56 (7/28/2017)
End time – 15:57:24 (7/29/2017)
Total time – 32:57:29
Out of 37 teams that started only 34 finished. Of those 34, we finished at the #32 spot. WE WEREN’T DEAD LAST!!!!!!