Virginia Run Sprint Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Centreville, Virginia
United States
Fins Wheels Feet Racing
60F / 16C
Total Time = 1h 29m 30s
Overall Rank = 248/354
Age Group = 25-29
Age Group Rank = 10/11
Pre-race routine:

We had just about everything put together and set out the night before. I hopped out of bed at about 4:20 am, got ready and had a piece of toast with peanut butter. Also had a fruit smoothie on the car ride. Left the house at 5:00 with wife and baby in tow.
Event warmup:

Once I had myself marked and set up in transition, I just hung out with my wife and son for a while and soaked in the spectacle. Basically just tried to stay warm and relax to keep the nervousness to a minimum.
  • 05m 3s
  • 273 yards
  • 01m 51s / 100 yards

After jumping into the lane (and having the water barely up to my waist) and waiting for the "go", the person in front of my was a little over halfway up the lane. When I started swimming, the first thought I remember popping into my head was "I am just gliding through the water." That may have been true, but I came out way faster than I do in training. I caught the guy in front of me halfway back on the first lap. Even though I had gone out on a fast start, I had to slow down frequently to get around people, so that let me catch my breath. I was joking with my wife that I was tickling women's feet the whole swim, but it wasn't far from the truth. I passed several people at the turns, and even a few mid-lane. Pushing past people mid-lane also made me swim faster than I normally would in training, which made up for the slow times of wading, trying to get by.

Remarkably (considering I have not been swimming that well on my training swims), I was caught off guard when I came to the end of a lane and had a volunteer yelling that I was done. I was so ecstatic that I practically jumped out of the pool and with a smile and a wave to a cheering family, I headed off to transition.
What would you do differently?:

Be put in a more proper place in line.

I told them 5:00/250 and that is exactly what I swam. However, I was almost one of the last numbers (460 of 500). I had an overall rank in the swim of 119. That is a huge difference. Either people estimated way fast in their times or I mistyped when I signed up. I could have saved a lot of time with kickturns and just better breath control and conditioning, but I survived.
Transition 1
  • 03m 21s

I was slow through transition. First of all, the ground was very rough and my bare feet really didn't like to jog over it. When I did get to my bike, I just kind of floudered getting everything right. I didn't really have a plan and I didn't have my gear laid out optimally. I very nearly forgot to take off my swim cap. That would have been rather embarrassing. :)
What would you do differently?:

Practice transition and have a plan. I was slow because I hadn't practiced the steps I needed to take once. "Oh yeah, I need my helmet" "Oh yeah, I should put on my socks and shoes now"
  • 49m 1s
  • 12 miles
  • 14.69 mile/hr

If you look at the time and the other racers, you might be baffled as to why I seemed so upbeat about that performance. However, I felt great on the bike. Once I got going, I settled into an above-average push and just rode and enjoyed the ride. It was way way way flatter than riding around my house, which was a major blessing. I had only 1-2 12 mile rides during training. Pitiful, I know, but I had a lot of 10 mile rides with 2-3x the total climb of this race. It really allowed me to push my legs to slight burning, but my heart and breathing stayed comfortable.

I passed several people and was passed by several people. I felt good about how I rode and how I performed. I realistically think that I did the best ride I could based on the training I had done and the conditions. The average rate was a bit higher than my normal traning runs, which I feel is a huge success considering that this was a race.

There were two hiccups on the bike ride. First of all, I left the two water bottles that I filled the night before in the refrigerator, and didn't realize it until I was about a mile in on the bike. I probably could have done better on the bike (but definately on the run) if I had been hydrated. Secondly, I lost two bolts from one of my clipless shoes. About halfway through the race I felt my right foot loosen on the pedal and I knew it wasn't good. However, when I reached the dismount line it was almost a disaster. Clipless pedals allows me to snap my shoe into the pedal. When I twist my heel outside, they release. Well, I had only one (loose) bolt still connected on my right shoe (which is my traditional first-dismount shoe). When I went to release it, the shoe rotated, but it didn't release. Thankfully I was able to release the other shoe and shift my weight before I fell over. After playing with it for about 10 seconds, I just took off the shoe and left it attached to the bike.

I went jogging through the transition area with one bike shoe and one sock.
What would you do differently?:

2. Check bolts on shoes
3. Train harder and faster.
Transition 2
  • 01m 31s

I was pretty quick, but this was an easier transition.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing besides practice the dismount and the transition to make it faster.
  • 30m 32s
  • 3.11 miles
  • 09m 49s  min/mile

I didn't pace myself well. I was moderately tired from the bike and was definately lacking hydration. I took a gulp of water at the entrance of the run, but I really didn't feel like water.

I didn't do a single bike-run brick in my training and I paid for it. I shortened my stride in an attempt to settle into a "slow and steady" run. Well, I think that I spent too much energy on those short strides and I hurt my knee doing it. It was an unpleasant run there and back, but I didn't stop and I didn't overdo it. I had a cup of water at the turn but I only did because I knew I needed it, not because I wanted it.

As we were reaching the turn back onto Pleasant Valley Road (probably only about .25 miles left), I saw a volunteer waving us on ahead and I just decided to kick it and run myself dry. That was the absolute best decision I made. As soon as I lengthened my stride (and as everyone knows, with legs as long as mine, that can be pretty long), the knee pain vanished and I felt a rush of energy.

I passed no less than 10 people on that final push and blew by them like they were standing still. It felt so good, and when they called my name at the finish line, it was a solid minute before the next person crossed.
What would you do differently?:

Train brick workouts. I wasn't prepared for how my legs would feel. As a result I altered my stride which caused me knee pain and cost me time.

Hydration. I needed to be hydrated from the beginning. Instead I was just forcing down a few gulps of water because I knew I had to.
Post race
Warm down:

Walked over to where my wife and son were and glowed. :) We walked around a bit while I recounted my race and my wife recounted the exploits of our son. I got my discarded pants and shirt from the pool deck and cleared out of transition.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Brick and transition training and further bike and run training.

Event comments:

I had a great time at my first triathlon and felt like I performed well. I thought the event was run very well, was well marked and explained, and was a pleasure to run.

Last updated: 2007-05-04 12:00 AM
00:05:03 | 273 yards | 01m 51s / 100yards
Age Group: 6/11
Overall: 119/354
Performance: Good
Course: It was a pool snake swim. 5 laps up and back.
Start type: Inside Pool Plus:
Water temp: 70F / 21C Current:
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 03:21
Performance: Below average
Cap removal: Below average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Below average
00:49:01 | 12 miles | 14.69 mile/hr
Age Group: 10/11
Overall: 267/354
Performance: Good
Wind: Some with gusts
Course: Flat with a few rolling hills. Two 6 mile loops.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Not enough
Time: 01:31
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike Bad
Running with bike Average
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Average
00:30:32 | 03.11 miles | 09m 49s  min/mile
Age Group: 10/11
Overall: 257/354
Performance: Below average
Course: Flat up and back.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4