Monday, June 23, 2008
Today was my very first triathlon. It was the Medical Lake trailblazer triathlon, and to say the least I was very nervous. I wasn't afraid about the bike, or the run, or for that matter my slow transitions. I was terrified for the swim, and the fact that I have a hard time getting my wet suit off. My T1 could end up being 20 minutes.
All morning I was thinking of things i might need because I didn't want to forget something important like, oh lets say my helmet or my biking shoes. I arrived at the race about two hours before it started. Luckily since I recently joined a club called tri-Fusion, I have met allot of people, and now know many people at these races. It was time to load into the trucks and head over to the other side of the lake.
We all got in the water and were waiting for them to start the race. This is when I started to relax a bit. Everyone in the water had almost a playful attitude, and they were all just having fun. This put my nerves at ease, and helped me relax. After standing in seaweed that was neck deep for a while. It was finally time to start the race.
5...4..3..2..1 and we were off, since this race was a sprint I started swimming as fast as I could. I could see people I knew in the water and as I swam, it really wasn't that bad. I did not have a feeling of panic. After a little while people started moving away from me, and I tried to maintain ground. About 2/3 of the way through the swim I saw Matt ( my sponsor), he was looking strong and kept on swimming by me. It was time to exit the water, and right ahead of me I saw a white platform. Remind me next year not to take this platform!! It was a little slick and I could not get up it, but luckily Natalie Gallagher was there to pull me out of the water. Thank you!! you saved me from being stuck in the water.
Swim place: about 39th
T1 was the one thing that I was terrified of. Getting my wet suit off in less than 10 minutes is not something I am good at. But with a little body glide it came right off, and I was out on the bike. The only thing running through my head on the bike was, this is a sprint, I better ride as hard as i can from the get go. This is what I did. At first there was allot of people, all in small packs, but soon it started to string out. I must also say sorry to Tiffany, I kind of passed her on the right going around a sharp turn. not cool. After a short wile on the bike there was no one in sight, and I was worried how far ahead the next group of people were. eventually I could see one more person ahead, and worked very hard to catch them. It was someone I did not know, but as soon as I passed him, he jumped on my back tire. This was not cool!! Luckily after about a minute of riding my tire I heard a loud pssssssssssss. It was my drafter getting a flat tire :). Ok I should never wish that on someone, but I was kinda happy since he was drafting me. after this I could see Steve ahead of me and pushed hard to catch him. This was not easy!! He was cranking, and I had a heck of a time catching up to him. At this point the bike was almost over, I came into transition, and got ready to run.
Place after bike-13th
Now it was time for the run, and now I was relaxed. I don't feel tense or anxious when it is time for the run, and usually am excited. I just started running, settling into a relaxed but steady pace. I caught some more people on the run, and just kept going. I really liked the self serve water station they had in this race, the line was too long so I did not stop for water. When I finished I did not know what place I was in because the people ahead of me were absolutely flying!!! Later though I was told that I was fourth place, but one of the places ahead of me was a team. So in the solo division I was 3rd. I was ok with this. As I said earlier I was very nervous going into this race, and for my first triathlon I was quite happy with 3rd.
I am very glad I did this race and now I am very excited (and not so nervous) to race more triathlons.
Sunday, June 15, 2008
This is my first race report so We will see how it goes. Leading into this race my biking has been feeling Better, and I am feeling stronger almost weekly. My running on the other hand has had some trouble the last two weeks. Due to tight IT bands in both legs I have not been running very much. For me this was ok because I really wanted to focus on my bike leg of this race. If I am ever going to be competitive at triathlons I need to be able to at least maintain on the bike. Rolling up to the race site I was quite nervous. For some reason I get very nervous at races. I see fancy bikes, and sweet jerseys and I think uh oh, they must be fast.
Well the siren goes off and we are under way. Right from the get go two men dart to the front and take the lead. I immediately jump up to where they are at and in my head I am thinking man these guys are taking it out fast!! After about 400 meters into the race the two men quickly drop off the pace, leaving me to suffer for the bad decision i made to start out in a sprint. For those of you that have never done the Post Falls duathlon the run consists of Two out and back loops. These give you plenty of opportunity to see your competition and where you are at. I was feeling good even though I took it out a little too hard, and I hit the first turn around. After turning around and running a little ways a man running the other direction threw up his arms and yelled "its not a fun Run" Im not sure what that meant, but I just kept running.The first 5k went well I had a good lead (4-5min), and I did not feel like I was pushing it very hard. I rounded the corner to the clock, when I saw 14:33!!! I knew right away that there was a Mistake in the time, and If it was true I would have been done right there and then.
First run-16:48(including transition)
The first run was now done and I was quickly running through transition to my bike. For those of you that have seen me race or know me, you know I have slow transitions. Not only do I have slow transitions, but I set the standard for the term slow transition. Today was another one of those days. Running up to my bike I first grabbed my helmet and threw it on. Next the running shoes came off. This is where it went down hill. I immediately noticed that my shoes had the Velcro tightly strapped, and not open. So i grabbed them and undid the Velcro. next I had to grab my water bottle and place it in my jersey and I was off.
T1-Just over 1:17 (sweet that means my fist run was sub 16)
Off to the bike. Continuing into the bike the transition is still haunting me, because as I run out of transition and hop on my bike I realize, oh yeah I am in the hardest gear of my bike. This makes for a very slow start. I guess you have to start learning somewhere:) . Starting the bike my legs felt dead. This made me scared. I was only about half a mile into the bike and I felt spent. Riding up the first big hill I took deep breaths and focused my breathing. I just kept telling myself you are ok, ride it out. Luckily after about 2 miles of riding my legs arrived and I felt better. Biking has been a weak spot for me at my last two duathlons, the second I get on the bike from the run, I just sit and wait until someone catches me. I ride just assuming that any second I will be passed. In this race I made it to the turn around and saw no one. This was a feeling I didn't know. Still unsure about my riding capability I pushed hard. I did not want to get tired the second half of the ride and loose the lead, like I have done many times before. Luckily the way back was mostly up hill, and I pushed hard, knowing this is where A small body type like mine could make up ground. This course is only 18.5 miles, but for some reason the climb on the way back seems like an eternity when you are racing. Eventually to my relief I made it to the top and had no one in sight. Now it was down the hill and one more run. At this point I was thinking, I might be able to win this!! This got me excited. I flew down the hill as fast as 120 pounds could take me. I hit the bottom and started across the long bridge. I decided that when I got to the end of the bridge I would look back and see if anyone was catching me. I turned around and aaaaaaah!!! There was someone right at the bottom of the hill, probably 500 meters back. Whoever this person was they had made up huge ground on me, he was like Houdini, and just came out of no where. I pushed hard. I rounded the last corned for the the final straight into transition. It was at this point I got an idea. I should try to take my feet out of the shoes well I was still riding into transition. I tried this and it worked wonderfully. I was stoked, I might have a fast transition now!!
I got my feet out of my shoes well I was still moving sweet!!! I came into T2 very excited about this. I dismounted off my bike threw it on the rack. Next I took off my helmet, and took the water bottle out of my jersey. I threw on my running shoes like I had practiced in my living room the night before. This was turning out to be a faster transition. one shoe was on and I had only one to go. The second shoe gave me grief though it took quite a while to get the shoe on and then after running about five feet, with everyone staring at me thinking why does this kid take so long in transition I had to stop and re- put it on.
T2-a tad faster than the first
The second run went well. The man who had an amazing bike also had a fast transition, and I thought I felt his presence right behind me. I pushed hard. After the first turn around I did not see him, and this made me feel more relaxed. After I passed him going the opposite direction, I felt more confident that I might be able to actually win this race (a goal I set at the beginning of the season). The rest of the run I tried to take water twice but dropped the cup both times. Oh well its not too much longer to run. At this point I just focused on keeping a steady pace that was not too hard. I finished and It felt good to be done.
Run #2 18:03 (minus
my 1:10 transition= 16:53)
Overall I felt very happy about this race for a couple reasons 1. I set a goal at the beginning of the season to win the race. 2. I learned allot of things I would do differently in transition, and hopefully my next race might be faster. 3. I felt good that I could still run ok off of two weeks of very weak run training (about 1/4 of what I normally do)4. I learned that I need to not worry about the bike leg and just ride my hardest.
Overall time-1hr 27min 38sec
Next years goal
Run#1- 16:00 (5:10/mi)
Bike - 50.27 (22mph)