Last Sunday, I participated in a unique and perhaps, first of its kind triathlon. This threesome included a 5K run, a 7 mile spin bike ride and a 1 mile Stand Up Paddle (SUP) leg. I was immediately drawn to this as an opportunity to “tri” something new. Over the years, I have completed a number of traditional tri races and jumped at the new challenge.
Stand Up Paddle Board Triathlon Race Day Recap
This inaugural SUP triathlon was held in Reston, Virginia as a fund raiser for Core Foundation. Talked my good friend, Sue, into joining me for the race.
Unlike a traditional triathlon, the 5K run would be the first leg of the race. There were approximately 125 individual participants and 25 relay teams. Race day provided warmer temps than normal in the mid 80’s. With a later start at 10 am, it was toasty out there. The 5K was a 2 loop course hilly around Lake Anne. Given how my runs have gone this summer, I knew it would be a challenge. The first loop went ok and then I walked for a bit around mile 2 but finished feeling strong and ready to bike.
While every other triathlon I’ve done took place on a regular bike, this one was on a stationary bike. The bike leg was intended to be completed in under 30 min for the 7 required miles. Race officials set the computer on each bike as each participant started and completed the 7 miles. There were about 30 bikes set up and we had to wait about 20 min to get on ours. By the time we got onto our bikes it was quite warm and they were in the full sun at around 11:30 am. As I have been doing lots of Peloton classes lately, I was feeling pretty confident on the bike. Both Sue and I crushed our 7 mile ride at around 22 minutes each. Whew we were sweating buckets!
The Paddle Board
After about another 20 minute wait, it was our turn to tackle the SUP boards. We had come out and practiced on this lake a few times this summer. We were feeling pretty confident that we could make the 1 mile loop in under 20 minutes. I felt super strong on the paddle board and enjoyed passing a number people on the water. I may not pass that many runners these days but it felt good to on the board. We finished right around 19 minutes.
The finish line was a little anticlimactic but happy to see it. We were feeling accomplished and starving at this point. Very well organized for a first time event. I loved having the opportunity to “tri” something new. After spending so much time biking this summer, it felt good to power through there and on the paddle board. We ended up finishing in the top third of all females. Not bad! Now to work on that run time for next year. Ever done a non traditional tri race? Would you rather swim or Stand Up Paddle?