Harvest Moon Long Course Triathlon - Triathlon1/2 Ironman

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Aurora, Colorado
United States
Racing Underground
Total Time = 5h 18m 5s
Overall Rank = 62/320
Age Group = Clydes
Age Group Rank = 4/26
Pre-race routine:

Took the kids up to some friend's house the night before, (what a blessing). Rested well, but can't say I slept well. At 3:00 had a Meal Replacement shake, got up at 4:00, showered, made a smoothie and heated water for oatmeal to take. Got the bikes on the car and the bags packed and got going at 5:15. Got to the res just as they were opening the gates. Parked and set up transition. Never did get to eat the oatmeal, I don't think calories factored in today though.
Event warmup:

Ran minutely checking to see if some bathrooms were open, got everything set up and went for a short ride to run through the gears. Rushed through a line in the bathroom the best I could and then put the wet suit on ( I think in record time) then I got down to the water and found my wife. As I was putting on the swim cap, it popped off my hands/head and shot out about 5-7 feet like a rubber band - if was funny and gave some people around us a good laugh. Gave/got a kiss and then hit the water. Went out about 20-30 strokes and came back and waited for the race to start.
  • 37m 48s
  • 2112 yards
  • 01m 47s / 100 yards

I don't know what to say about this swim. It was my most chaotic start experience. Was in the middle of things and was swimming with my head up for the first 50 yds or so, then tried to get settled in. Can't imagine what IM will be like. Was trying to draft and get practice but I struggled finding the right set of feet, when I did, I lost them pretty quickly. We headed out into the sun and sighting was a struggle for me. My goggles also fogged up pretty quickly. For the longest time, I just kept people on both sides of me and figured that was good. Then I seemed to be in open water alone, but at that point I went right by and intermediary buoy. I just kept swimming and for a while I could look for the plethora of arms 50 yards ahead. Finally, there seemed like there were 3 or 4 of us together. I hit a leg a couple of times then drifted right. I think I stayed of (her - I think) hip or feet the rest of the way to the turn buoy. Somewhere here, someone from the wave behind us just hammered his way through us. At the turn, I went around and took the lead for a while then I started drifting right and left. This trip back in seemed forever. Started having more folks from the wave behind us come through. Followed one for about 20 secs :) Kept going in, sighting was much easier in this direction, no sun and a large building with a taller spire at which to aim. Again this seemed to take forever, I was thinking how little I would have liked to run onto the beach and go out for another lap. I see more water time in my immediate future. I look at my watch when I hit the beach and see 36:3# and am like what just happened, how awesome, I beat last year by over 13 minutes. I was stoked. Funny thing is, this was about the same time I did in my last OLY without a wet suit.
What would you do differently?:

Clear goggles maybe, try and draft better. Start more to the outside instead of middle of everything.
Transition 1
  • 02m 7s

Running up from the beach among people, I tripped over some old stump humbling after my excitement from the swim but kind of funny. I was focused on being smooth and somewhat quick, to the point of not taking the time to put on sunscreen in the transitions. I was somewhat disjointed in T1 but better than I was in my two august races, maybe had something to do with the fact that I was happy with the swim in this race as opposed to frustrated. But looking at the T1 time, what did I do for all that time.
What would you do differently?:

Add sunscreen, get wet suit off better.
  • 2h 41m 56s
  • 56 miles
  • 20.75 mile/hr

Got going on the bike and was moving pretty well, trying to stay focused, but calm and ride within myself. I was treating this as along transition from the swim to the run. I wanted to take the early rollers one gear less than I normally would and was hoping to stay zone 3 on the climbing. My plan was to hold back for the first 30-40 miles and be ready for the stretch back into the wind on Quincy. I was working harder on the early hills than I had intended as my HR was in zone 3-4 on the climbs and then it wasn't settling back down. I was making progress and stated my nutrition about 20-30 minutes into the ride. During this time, I went by a couple of clydes. I do slow down as I go through the meals on wheels. First was a bar, that was hard to get down, I have to find something better for my solids. Was going to take a salt tablet every 30 minutes, took a gel 10 minutes later and then every 30 minutes after that. Was going through water and gatorade. Picked up one water at the first handoff. After this aide station, I started leap frogging with one Clydesdale. After leaving him, I had two go by me. I looked and figured, stay with the plan, let them go. This was hard to do. Along those lines I can't every remember getting passed so much on the bike - some of it is a product of being in the first wave and having had a good swim (at least for me) - come to think of it, there are several races where clydes are much later in the wave start. No wonder I don't get passed much - all the fast people were already ahead of me - oh well another crushing blow to the ego I shouldn't have. I wanted to stick to the plan, keep it zone 2 through the north west corner. All the down hill from Quincy to Hwy 36 helped get the HR where I wanted it and I did a good job of keeping it there eastbound on 36. The passing tail off at this point. Hit the aide station at mile 30 and asked for two waters and I assumed I got that. Put one bottle in the cage and poured the other into the aerobottle. When I took a drink, it turned out to be Heed. I was mildly bothered since I wanted water up front and that also meant I would have to clean out the bottle and sponge. Lesson to be learned, taste both bottles just in case. I got out to the corner at 22 and change and did the southbound portion of Kiowa-Bennett road and actually maintained my pace. Then we turned westbound. I think we encountered and angled cross/headwind for this stretch. I was just hoping to not lose too much. Took it slow on the uphills, and tried to take advantage of the downhill and was looking forward to getting off the bike (also wondering how my wife was doing in the sprint at this point.) I got by a few more people in the finish and came up on someone just finishing the bike portion of the sprint as I approached T2, confused me for a moment on where I was supposed to go.
What would you do differently?:

I followed my plan pretty well. Was it the right plan, I don't know. Should I have pushed harder.
Transition 2
  • 01m 8s

It was cool that because I was in the first wave, had a good swim and solid bike that when I got back, there were no bikes around my T2 area. Also they had taken down "banners - ribbons" separating the Sprint from the HIM transition, so I ran passed the turn for my rack. Got to the area, took off my helmet and stuff, put on the shoes and realized, hey just grab my belt and hat and go. Didn't even think about sunscreen at this point. My goal was to get out of t-2 and hit the port-o-let. It was just out of transition, but it might as well have been in there. As such, I had the fastest T2 in the Clydes!!! Quite an improvement for someone who once had a goal to get in the top 66% of transitions.
What would you do differently?:

Take the time for sunscreen. Based on the run and what I did, I have learned some more new areas to apply it to. Good lesson learned for Nov.
  • 1h 55m 7s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 08m 47s  min/mile

After leaving the head, I was stiff and tight but relieved. Got going in the first mile hoping I wouldn't see my wife on the trail as I encountered a number of the sprint competitors. I didn't feel like I was moving very well and the downhill spots were painful to the glutes and hamstrings. I was surprised when I hit mile 1 at just over 9 minutes considering where I spent 1 minute of the time. I didn't have a plan for how I was going to utilize the aid stations but knew when I was drinking I would walk. Based on the temps etc, I used every one. Kept going and started to loosen up and feel pretty good, but my HR was 10 beats over what I had planned but since I felt good, I just went with it. Hit another aid station and asked for two waters, one for drinking and one for my head. I seemed like that water on my head was kind of sweet. Either they sweetened the water with something or I dumped Heed on my head. At least it was not sticky... Encountered the race leader (Viktor Zyemstev) a bit later in the course than last year, then several more of the elites. Ran along a man named Craig for a little bit - he is going to IMFL this year too. He took off and continued a strong run. Between miles 2&4 I picked off a the two Clydes who passed me in the first 14 miles on the bike. Since it was an out and back course, I kept checking the back of the legs of every one who looked good sized. I never saw any CL marking looking back. I had no clue where I was place wise. Was running alongside another guy when we encountered women's leader (Amanda Lavato) we got a smile and a big thumbs up from her. She was looking great at that point. I just kept on running between the aide stations trying to keep pace and HR level. Hit the dam and had a nice cooling breeze off the water, did the turnaround and know I was halfway done. Kept targeting the next person ahead and trying to catch them. Come to think of it, I don't think many people passed me(physically - always hard to tell with the wave starts) after the turn around point. Since I never saw any markings, I was toying around in my head that I was in the lead. I still looked for anyone big up ahead, but don't know if I ever saw any. I hit the 10 mile mark and my plan had been to let it go all out from there. Nice plan, to bad it didn't have any execution. At this point, I was in maintenance mode, hold my position, catch the next person ahead of me and get whatever I could in my body. Tried the Coke at this point and did that the last 2 aide stations. Not sure if it helped or not. Mile 11 was 8:59, mile 12 was 9:20 - I was disappointed at this drop of in pace,I was lamenting the fact that I had blown off most of my long runs this year. I have not gone 2 hours yet this year. Thinking back, this was also the pain in the backside, cruel up hill portion. That may have factored in but I didn't consider it during the run. I tried to go steady the rest of the way and then, as I approached the finish,I saw 5:17:43. Hmmm maybe if I sprint I could break 5:18 - it would be a stretch. But I went for it and ..... I missed. Did pass the last guy ahead of me but made it in 5:18:05. Now for the lament, if I had just maintained the 8:40-8:45 pace for the last 5k, there would have been a sprint finish for 3rd in the Clydesdales for the $100.00 prize. Next the surprise, 59th on the run and 71st on the bike, 2nd race out of the last 3 where I placed better on the run than the bike. What is up with that.
What would you do differently?:

Have more long runs, maintain pacing, SAMPLE WATER BEFORE DUMPING IT ON MY HEAD. I had hoped, to run 8:34's or break 1:50 or something. Did that hope have foundation in anything? I don't know.
BTW, it was a new PR for a Half Mary (Then again, I have only done 3 and 2 of them are the last leg of HIM's)
Post race
Warm down:

My wife was waiting for me at the finish - She became a Triathlete today! and was there for my finish. She went off for a massage and I went down to the lake for a soak. Came up and signed up for a massage and then we went to tear down transition. Got my wife after her massage and went to eat - Bennetts BBQ catered again this year....
Socialized, got my massage and had numerous Mtn Dew's

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Lack of long runs, maybe lack of sunscreen. I burned in some areas. Maybe the wrong plan for the bike. Not drafting well on the swim. Not drafting on the bike (just kidding)

Event comments:

This is a fun race with good organizers. They tackled last minute problems and oncoming challenges even up through the awards.

This year, the Clydesdale and Filly Racing Association named this their 2007 Long Course Championships. As such they were paying out 250, 150 and 100 to the top three Clydes/Athena's. Also, they broke out the categories into 3 weight classes within 2 ages groups so there were plaques etc available all around. Because they took the top three out of the weight/age groups it seems like practically every Clyde will walk away with hardware.

Last updated: 2007-02-09 12:00 AM
00:37:48 | 2112 yards | 01m 47s / 100yards
Age Group: 12/26
Overall: 162/320
Performance: Good
Avg HR came out at 136. Didn't take the effort to get a split. Missed the lap button when I came out of the water, but I thought I saw 36:30.
Suit: Full
Course: Straight out and back course on one of the smoothest open water courses I have swam ( I know my number is limited but still ;) )
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 68F / 20C Current:
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 02:07
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed:
02:41:56 | 56 miles | 20.75 mile/hr
Age Group: 6/26
Overall: 71/320
Performance: Good
Avg HR 154. (High zone 2/low zone 3)
Wind: Some
Course: Big loop with a spur within it. Lots of good sized rollers (at least in my opinion)
Road: Smooth  Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Average Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 01:08
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Average
01:55:07 | 13.1 miles | 08m 47s  min/mile
Age Group: 3/26
Overall: 59/320
Performance: Good
9:06 (includes 1 minute in the Port-o-Let) 8:40 8:30 8:32 8:51 26:09 (6-8 I missed that markers for that stretch) 8:40 8:45 (10 miles in 1:27:17) 8:57 9:20 9:33
Course: Out on bike paths and trails around the reservoir, up and down and no shade in sight. Some on crushed stone paths, some concrete bike trails.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 4