Going into the Du, I really had no idea what to expect. I had read a few blogs, but I knew that the only way to figure out what to do was to, well, do it.
Hydrate, hydrate and hydrate some more.
I thought I had hydrated enough the night before and the morning of, but I still found myself thirsty within the first few kilometres of the bike... and I couldn't get my bottle off my bike easily! It deterred me from drinking through the course which was a big no no. I also knew in the back of my mind that I hadn't drank as much water as I'd like since I was drinking out of plastic bottles (which I kind of hate the way water tastes in them...). Note to self: figure out the best way to drink water on the bike course. I'm hoping it won't be such a big deal next time since the next one is in October. I also use Nuun tablets and I find them extremely useful for electrolyte balance.
As mentioned in my previous post, I didn't sleep very well the night before. I assume this has something to do with the fact that I gassed out on the second run. I will do everything I can to sleep 8ish hours next time. I really don't think it was something I could have avoided that night, but next time I WILL sleep.
Everyone, I mean EVERYONE will tell you to practice transitions. From what I've been told, people tell you this in order for you to be faster. My advice is to know what a transition feels like. Whatever, you fiddle with your helmet, take a couple extra swigs of your water, maybe you're in there for a full minute, that stuff doesn't matter to newbies (in my opinion). What matters is understanding how your legs feel after the bike and knowing that you can push forward. As soon as you swing your leg over from the bike, you feel like you're floating. I barely felt like I had legs to stand on and I wasn't sure how in the world I was walking. I wasn't unnerved by it though, as I had felt that way a few weeks prior when I did a 20R/60B/40R brickwork.
I think this one's a given. I spent a lot of my run and bike talking to myself. More like talking myself off the edge. Every hill was the last one I had to tackle in my head. Every pylon was just a few more feet to run. The thing you have to keep telling yourself is that you CAN do it. It may not be pretty, it may not be fast, but you can cross the finish line!