Sunday, June 14, 2009

Deja Vu all over again......

2oo8- Swim-26:41 (14th AG) Bike-1:09:40 (21.4 mph/9th AG) Run-47:07 (7:36 min/mi 9th AG) Total Time- 2:25:15 36th Overall/10th AG

2009- Swim-29:11 (15th AG) Bike-1:08:22 (21.8 mph/9th AG) Run-45:52 (7:24 min/mi 9th AG) Total Time-2:25:36 45th Overall/9th AG

Wow..I don't think that I have ever done the same race twice in almost the same time. The results are a bit misleading since the '09 swim was long so I feel confident that my swim was better this year. The overall placement is also a bit misleading since there were a TON of people between 2:20 and 2:25, a couple of seconds or a minute faster means 10 positions overall.

My first impressions of the race are good ones, I felt like I was back on my game for this one. I didn't wear a watch or use a Power Meter or Heart Rate monitor and just took what my body gave me. It was refreshing to not look down and see a certain HR or Wattage and play the mental game of "I need to be going harder" or "I am going to hard I need to slow down before I blow up" and just RACE!

Swim-There was a storm the night before so all of the buoys were blown across the lake. They tried to reset them as best as they could, but the course just looked long compared to the previous year. I wore my XTERRA Velocity 0.02 Speedsuit ( for the first time in a race and loved it. I felt faster in the water and it was super easy to get off when I came out. I was glad that I didn't have a watch on for the swim, even though we ALL knew that it was long it still would have been discouraging to see 29 + minutes out of the water. Overall Grade: Incomplete (it felt good, but without the apples to apples comparison from last year I can't gauge improvement or lack thereof)

T1-Out of the speedsuit in a flash, had a bit of trouble getting my helmet straps untangled and snapped. Other than that no issues.

Bike-This bike course is no joke. The first 3/4 of a mile are in the park so it is flat, after that though it is just constant rollers that never give the legs a break. I felt strong and pushed the bike and passed a ton of people while only being passed by 5. I was faster than last year which I expected since last year's race was 2 days after the "Cycle Jam" spin class that I went to at the brand new Mountain Brook Lifetime Fitness and I was still feeling it race morning. In looking at the results there was one person that was under an hour and most of the AG winners were around 1:03 so I really feel good about this bike. That being said I can go faster! Overall Grade: B+

T2-In and out in a flash

Run-Coming off the bike I felt good and was confident that a good run was in the cards. I was able to get my foot turnover going pretty quickly out of transition and settled into a good pace. Not having a watch I didn't know exactly how fast I was going but I did know that it didn't feel sub-7 which I really wanted to run off the bike. I tried a few times to speed up but my body was telling me that I was pretty much at my limit so in keeping with the spirit of the day I took what my body gave me. After I hit the turn around I saw one of my teammates up ahead about 1/4 mile or so and try as I might I could not reel her in before the finish. There is a nasty little hill right before the 5 mile mark, it's about 200 yards long and straight up (which is really cruel at that point in the race). Last year I ran up it and my HR never came back down so this year I decided to walk quickly and my HR never came back down (funny how that works isn't it?). I knew I was slowing down the last 1.5 miles and when a guy in my AG passed me right before the finish line I had nothing left to contest the sprint. This is still way off my open 10k time, but in looking at the results there were maybe 5 people total to run under 40 min so I feel pretty good about this also given the course and conditions. Overall Grade: B

This race was a huge boost to my confidence after the first two races of 2009. I feel fairly certain that if the swim was correct then I would have bested last years time by a couple of minutes at least. One thing that I am going to try is taking in nutrition on the bike for the Olympic distance. In the past I have just done Sprint and Olympic distance races on plain water, but I feel like if I had had a few calories in the system yesterday I might not have faded at the end of the run. Something to work on for next time I suppose. My goals for this race were pretty simple: Have fun (check), Go fast (sort of check), Have a solid run off the bike (half a check). My super secret goals for the race were Swim 24-25, Bike 1:05, Run-43:00 (not really even in the ballpark for those). Overall Grade: B+ (the swim was impossible to evaluate, the bike was good and the run was good but not what I wanted).

Next up: SGT. Audie Murphy Sprint Triathlon next Saturday.

Thanks for reading, Train Safe!

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