My Dabbling In Triath-alone

Shame is a great burden to shoulder. But do not drop the shame to pretend everything is fine. Even, I suggest to prolong and to enhance the weight (use your imagination! Be creative!). Because, its detrimental effects are actually rare resources we can try to use to our advantage. It may give way for strength and willpower to rise. To shoulder great shame, one must possess the necessary endurance, and this endurance we’d cultivate in mental and physical distractions.

First. I tried to swim, for an obese class one like me(at the time), it was the most comfortable sport. But it is costly so I turned to walk. Then slowly I tried to run. Well, god be damned, even after quite sometime and changed from obese class one to “just” overweight, I’m still struggling to finish even a 5 km run. My self-esteem rise and fall frequently just like my weight. Just not long ago, I lost 6 kg, but then I gained 2 kg. So what, I’ll just shed them again. Sometimes I feel like Sisyphus who’s condemned to push a boulder to the top just to watch it fall again and push it up again forever. But like Camus said, one must imagine Sisyphus happy!

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At 20 July 2015, having just arrived the day before from a long trip to my grandmother’s village, I tried to perform a Triathlon Sprint Distance. Triathlon is an endurance sport that possesses death rate almost twice the death rate of marathon (says howstuffwork), awesome right? It consists of –conventionally in this sequence– swimming, biking, and running. It’s not merely dangerous to the health, but also to the wealth, duh, it’s an expensive sport! There are a lot of gears that screams, “Purchase me please!” like: swimsuit/wetsuit/trisuit/cyclingsuit, bike, goggles, bike shorts, running shoes, running belt, tracking device, etc. Whoa. Man. I don’t have enough resources to pay for those. and even the fee to triathlon events is probably too much for me. So, man, what the fuck, I just gotta do this shit my own way: minimum gears and solo (I think it would be cute to call this a triath-alone).
For Sprint Distance, the usual sequence and distance is swim (750 m), bike (20 km), then run (5 km). What I did was in the opposite sequence, run 5 km, bike 20 km, then swim 750 m. The logic behind the usual sequence is to prevent people from drowning out of exhaustion; because well, they actually sprint the race. Me? I didn’t intend to sprint at all, I merely trying to survive the distance and the pain, that’s it. Also, I kinda don’t like the idea of biking and running after being wet with chlorine in a pool; that’s why I rearrange the sequence so the running came first and the swimming came last.

As I said before, finishing a 5 km run is still not an easy thing for me. Especially when I just got home from a long trip; I was trapped inside a car for days, bored and kept shoving any food within arm’s reach into my mouth. That’s why, that morning, after I started my run at 07.00, I only managed to constantly running for (maybe) the first  km, and the rest of the run was filled with a run-walk-run switch; I finished it (5.09 km), in 38 minutes, with average pace of 7.33 min/km. I started and finished it at my home, there I took a piss, and drank a lot. But when I just wanted to grab my bike, I felt a slight cramp at my right thigh. It was not that painful, but the concern of what might follow that hurt so much. I doubted myself, “Stop this, you have two excuses, you just got home from a long trip, and now you got cramp!”. I was discouraged and disheartened, even my parents told me to stop. I took a deep breath, rested on the couch, browsing about cramps in my phone; in wikipedia, it says that one possibility that may cause cramping include low blood salt. I forced myself to stand up and then I ate a spoon of salt. I don’t know whether that really did the cramp justice or it merely served as a placebo treatment; the fact is, I decided to continue.
first tri running

I wasted 20 minutes in the first transition because of that cramps, and I rode my bike really slowly in fear of cramps. But after quite a while, I decided to be faster. At some point I went too fast for my own capacity, my knees felt like they have turned into stone, so I had to slow down to the point of almost standing still again. Overall, it went better than the run, I finished it (20.94 km) in 1 hr 6 min with average speed 18 km/h. I finished it at the Permata Timur pool.

first tri cycling

The pool’s area is 24 m x 12 m. To achieve 750 m, I had to swim the 12 m, 62,5 times. I thought it was going to be easy, but what the hell, I was wrong. After merely swimming for 12 x 4 in freestyle stroke, I was already hurting my arms. I was in despair. The innocence laughter of children playing at the pool suddenly felt like merciless mockery directed at me. I closed my eyes, rested myself for a while; brooding. Then I proceeded the swim with body facing the side, both hands stay still close, and I was only using my leg to stroke the water horizontally. With that form, I slowly regained calmness and focus, hence, I was able to use my arms again.  I didn’t have the device to track my swimming directly, so I merely using a stopwatch to count the time and my mind to count the distance. The result: I finished it (12 m x 64 = 768 m) in 51 minutes.

My phone's stopwatch
My phone’s stopwatch
The pool's ticket
The pool’s ticket
It was a bit crowded
It was a bit crowded

I started at 07.00 and ended it at 10.06. Of course the time was embarassingly slow. But I’m also quite proud and pleased. At least now I know I can survive the distance … and, am I allowed to call myself a Triathlete now? :p I wonder, should I try the olympic distance next (when?) or focus to increase my time in this distance?


Live slow!
Die whenever!

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Akhir Pekan Dengan Kawan Lama

Saya mengenal Gerry sejak kelas sepuluh di SMA 61 Jakarta Timur. Dulu kami sekelas dan sering bersama duduk di barisan paling depan. Kelas sepuluh, saya ekskul bahasa jepang dan dia ekskul KIR. Dulu pada hari ekskul di sabtu pagi, kami tak jarang bermain catur di pojokkan sekolah. Kelas sebelas dan dua belas kami tidak sekelas lagi, namun kami bergabung dalam ekskul yang sama: pencak silat. Ia pernah membanting saya sekali. Saya pernah membantingnya sekali. Impas. Lalu setelah lulus, ia ke ITB saya ke STAN. Di sana sepak terjang Gerry dalam sport menggila. Saya pernah dengar kabar ia sempat juara 2 karate di sana. Whoa. Ngeri. Lalu pada akhir 2013 seusai suatu acara reuni alumni, Gerry mulai rajin bersepeda. Saya melihat track record sepedanya langsung terkejut. Dia tidak sekadar main-main santai tapi rutin dan intensif. Saya yang penasaran segera menanyakan tentang ini, dan kalau tidak salah, ia waktu itu bilang, ia rajin sepeda supaya kuat lari. Whoa. Eh lalu ternyata benar, di 2014 dia mulai lari dengan mengerikan. Larinya enggak kira-kira, rutin banget, dan jauh-jauh sampai puluhan kilometer. Gila. Gila. Gila. Monster.

Saya dan Gerry di Kelas 10 dulu di SMA
Saya dan Gerry dulu di SMA
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Saya, Gerry, dan Irghan (Trio Pesilat) sewaktu reuni alumni 61 pada tahun 2013
Saat kami bertemu sabtu 23 Mei kemarin
Saat kami bertemu sabtu 23 Mei 2015 kemarin

Jadi ceritanya, Gerry sedang tidak di Bandung karena kepalanya cidera terkena duri saat melaksanakan Trail Run di Bogor. Maka datanglah saya ke rumahnya di Pondok Kopi untuk menemui monster itu secara langsung dan nyata dengan berharap untuk tertular semangatnya.

Kepalanya sudah sembuh. Hanya ada pitak sedikit. Haha. Kami bercerita-cerita sedikit tentang kuliah. Ia bercerita kepada saya tentang bentuk solidaritas di jurusan kuliahnya. Katanya, kalau ada mahasiswa yang tidak masuk, sampai perlu dihampiri. Ia pernah begitu, kediamannya dihampiri. Untuk memberikan impresi lebih meyakinkan kepada yang menghampirinya bahwa ia sedang tidak sehat, Gerry bilang, ia sengaja berjalan berputar-putar di tempat sampai pusing-pusing. Terbahak-bahaklah saya. Selain berbincang, kami juga iseng bermain tembak-tembakan menembak boneka Patrick Star dengan senapan mainannya. Jadi ingat, dulu sewaktu sma, saya pernah berkunjung, dan ditembaknya saya dengan senapan itu. Kampret lu Ger.

Setelah ashar dan menjelang pukul 5 kami berlari bersama sejauh 6.57 km dalam waktu 50 menit. Berlari bersama teman ternyata memang menambah semangat. Saya rata-rata mungkin hanya kuat lari sejauh 2 atau 3 km nonstop. Jarang-jarang bisa sampai di atas 5 km tanpa istirahat disela jalan. Selama berlari kami berbincang terkait beberapa hal. Saya mengeluh terkait pendapat saya bahwa lari adalah olahraga yang sangat membosankan, jadi kadang saya berhenti lari bukan karena capek, namun karena bosan. Gerry bilang kadang supaya lebih asyik saat berlari, ia membayangkan sedang bermain Skyrim. Kemudian berlanjut ke seputar Fallout New Vegas tentang bagaimana saya berburu Deathclaw dengan bersenjatakan katana. Saya merasa sebenarnya renang lebih cocok untuk saya, namun ya mahal di ongkos. Kemudian ia pamer di tempatnya kuliah ada kolam yang hanya meminta uang sebesar 3000 rupiah jika ada kartu mahasiswa. Wew. Lalu ada juga ketika kami menyebut-nyebut soal renang gaya kupu-kupu. Sangat susah dan berkali lipat lebih melelahkan dibanding gaya lain. Namun ada lagi yang lebih susah menurut saya. Yaitu gaya orang cacat. Ya, itu komitmen sendiri aja, silakan nyemplung, lalu imajinasikan bagian mana saja yang cacat, lalu berusahalah berenang dengan sisa bagian tubuh yang dianggap berfungsi. Teruslah perbincangan sambil lari itu berputar ke mana-mana sampai akhirnya Gerry bilang, “Tinggal satu kilo lagi nih Sas, lari yuk.”

Yeah right. Jadi dari tadi bagi dia belum terasa lari! Hahaha! Saya iyakan usulnya. Lalu kami mulai ngebut. Namun tak sampai beberapa detik saya sudah tertinggal puluhan meter. CURANG! PAKAI GAMESHARK! 

Setelah melihat lambaian tangan saya dari jauh, barulah ia berhenti menunggu saya menyusulnya. Oh ya, di jalan kami juga sempat foto-foto.

*Gerry berlari secepat ninja konoha*
*Gerry berlari secepat ninja konoha*
*Sasmito berlari secepat TINJA konoha*
*Sasmito berlari secepat TINJA konoha*

Sesampainya kembali ke rumah Gerry, saya celamitan meminta-minta eskrim, buah, dan cemilan-cemilannya. Lalu solat, ngobrol, mondar-mandir ga jelas, foto-foto. Pulang. Sebelum pulang, saya ditawarkan sekantung jambu hijau yang manis. Hmmm. Tentu mau. Thanks! Makasih banget Ger untuk segalanya, inspirasinya, juga eskrimnya, dan sebagainya! Mmuach.

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