We left on Friday October 7th, around 11am from San Diego and started our 8-9-hour drive to Berkeley. This was the first time I had ever been to the Bay, and it was beautiful. After our drive up we picked up our packets and went to eat at this delicious Mediterranean restaurant.
On Saturday morning, October 8th, we left towards the race site before 6am, and arrived at the Berkeley marina ready to start the race morning process. After getting some warm-up on my bike, I put it in transition, which I had a placard with my name on it, making this race super official. It was the Regional Qualifier for NCAA Women’s Nationals after-all. Once I set up my transition, I went for a short run and made my way over to the swim start for our pre-race briefing.
Once the official talked to us about what this draft-legal race would entail, it was time to get in the water. No swim warm-up. Uh oh. I am the kind of swimmer who needs at least 15 minutes of swimming before racing. We lined up on the dock by number—of course I was the last number. Taking our spots along the dock, the siren sounded and we were off. I got about halfway to the second buoy when all of a sudden, I heard and felt a pop in my shoulder. Instantly, pain throbbed through my shoulder and upper back. A normal person might have stopped, but I am stubborn enough to finish the race—I did sit in a car for over 8 hours to get there, after all. When I finished the swim, I was pulled out of the water by a volunteer and ran to the transition. Getting on the bike, I found my group and stuck with that group for 2.5/3 laps, and was dropped on the last U-turn. But once I got on the run, I passed them all back. My run felt smooth aside from the constant throbbing coming from my shoulder. After finishing, I got all taped up and iced my shoulder and went to watch the rest of my teammates race in both the Draft Legal and Classic races. Everyone did so well and it was a fun weekend!