Today's post was written by a guest of mine (my wife Greta) in response to the outcry on other sites for solutions to a better 'finisher's photo'. I know that the following advice will be applicable for everyone from David Hasselhoff look-a-likes to the double french-braiding racer.
On race day it's important to make sure that NOTHING takes away from your transition time. This is what Loren (ED: I've asked her to refer to me as 'the Lorpeedo', and yes, all changes to appearance must be done while moving as quickly as possible) says when I ask him why he can't change outfits between swimming, biking and running. So be it.
I still think there is a way to look fabulous and not take away from kicking ass. Let's take a closer look at this - specifically around how hair can be easily transitioned to look better for those #1 winner pictures.
From what I can see, the same hair style can be used for the swim and the bike (i.e. you have the swim which you have to wear a not-so-lovely cap for and the bike has a helmet) because
a.) nobody can see what it looks like and
b.) there really aren't any photo ops happening during this time.
What I propose for hair longer than shoulder length is either a tight low bun with bobby pins (at least five in place) so the swim cap/helmet sort of fits on top but doesn't mess with the bun. Now, I'm wondering if tucking the bun up under the swim cap is possible? I've never worn a swim cap so I don't know.
If the bun stays out of the swim cap it might slow down your swim time? I don't know these things so ladies (ED: and by ladies, she means Ben and Courtenay) please weigh in.
At any rate - use the same style for both swim and bike but once you get off the bike and you're running, use that run time to make your hair super-cute and winner-picture worthy.
(ED: Here's the grand finale)
As you're running, take out all of your bobby pins and rubber band and stick them in your mouth. Run your fingers through your hair and bring all of it up to the top (sort of like bam-bam from the Flintstone's) and make a pony tail. Loren's mom calls this style "the fountain" as it looks like there is a fountain sprouting from the top of your head. You'll see a similar style on very young baby girls that only have 4 or 5 strands of hair to pull together- I was guilty of this with Sada who, at age 3 was still being called 'little buddy' by strangers which totally pissed me off. Anyway, I digress. Back to the ponytail. When you get the rubberband around the base of your hair, take the end of your pony and start wrapping it around the base of your ponytail. Think Princess Lea and cinnamon buns (ED: mmmmmm cinnamon buns....). Feel around for loose hairs and fly aways. Using one bobby pin at a time, open the ends with your teeth and "sew" the bobby into your bun so that the bobby pin is grabbing the outside of the bun and sort of bringing the hair to the middle or inside. Use as many bobbys as you can. For those of you out there lucky enough to have a bit of wave or body to your hair, this task will be easy and at the end of your run you will look as cute as Tinker Bell for your 'end of race winning photo'. You'll have little wispy hairs at the nape of the neck which are totally sexy too!
ED: There you go, everything you wanted to know about how to look grand-fricking-fantabulous for that post-race photo.