Accenture Chicago Triathlon - Olympic Distance - TriathlonOlympic

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Chicago, Illinois
United States
Capri Events
75F / 24C
Total Time = 2h 56m 40s
Overall Rank = 1715/3928
Age Group = M35-39
Age Group Rank = 297/521
Pre-race routine:

Got up ridiculously early, 3:30 a.m., wondered about another sport that lets you sleep in, ate half bagel with peanut butter. I drove to Chicago with friend, where she dropped me off near transition. The Accenture is the world's largest triathlon, and transition looks like a triathlon factory, with masses of people and bikes. I found a great spot in the area reserved for my wave, right near bike-out. That was strange because people in my wave were avoiding the spots closer to bike-out, preferring to drop stuff closer to the run out. Anyway, I needed to hit the porta-potty badly, so set up my stuff pretty fast.
Event warmup:

I lounged around for 2 hours, meeting up with my friend and brother, who was in the Clydesdale. I stretched pretty well, used plenty of bodyglide and got my mind into relax mode for the swim.
  • 33m 32s
  • 1640 yards
  • 02m 02s / 100 yards

I was pretty happy with the swim. It was real cold, with 68 being the announced water temperature, but I think it was closer to 65. Still, I seemed to pass more people than I ever have before and I think it was because I stayed relaxed and focused on my swim. People bumped me and kicked, but I just kept in a zen state. The time may not impress anyone, but it was darn good for me.
What would you do differently?:

I could work on my overall speed in training, but this was a darn good swim for me.
Transition 1
  • 05m 23s

I was shocked to see so many bikes in my wave area, which meant I had a good swim. I considered swim to be my worst event by far. Transition times at Chicago are skewed compared to other tri's because it is so darn big. I am not entirely sure when my swim time ended and the transition 1 started, but you have to run 400 yards to the transition, and then through a maze of bikes. Regardless, I took too long getting my bike shoes on. I need tri shoes instead ones that lace with velcro straps both length and width.
What would you do differently?:

I need to get tri-shoes and work on jumping on the bike. I am not sure I want to mess with running barefoot through muddy transitions with the shoes clipped in for now, but I should learn that eventually.
  • 1h 22m 13s
  • 24.85 miles
  • 18.14 mile/hr

I was shocked to see so many bikes in my wave in the transition area, which meant all the people I passed on the swim passed me on the bike. I need a bike with a better engine on it. I hear you can buy one with time in training. I watched a lot of people pass me, but I focused on keeping my heart rate around 160, which I think I did well. The time wasn't very good but I am not unhappy with my strategy or execution of it, just my ability.
What would you do differently?:

Train better for the bike. I also need to work on not slowing down so much while getting drinks or gels. I normally have to stop so often on training rides that I drink then. I maybe could have stepped up the heart rate a little bit as wel.
Transition 2
  • 02m 22s

I could dismount better but I would not run without shoes in the muddy mess that was transition. Overall, I think it was a pretty good transition. I didn't screw around much at all.
What would you do differently?:

I stopped and threw a gel and sport beans below my bike, which I could have done on the run.
  • 53m 8s
  • 6.21 miles
  • 08m 34s  min/mile

That hurt, but for me, that was a darn good run. I started out feeling pretty good and tried to stay relaxed throughout. I drank a little at almost every water station, which hurt the gut, but I think was necessary in the sun. The ground somehow got harder around mile 3 and my stomach was unhappy about mile 4, to the point where I was worried I would see the gel again.
What would you do differently?:

I need to train with more bike-runs and keep my heart rate down. It was in the high 170's, I think, for most of the run. I stopped looking after a while, but my natural pace is pretty fast these days, at least for me.
Post race
Warm down:

Ate a little, drank a little, looked for friends, borrowed cell phone to find out where they were.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I need to train better on the bike. I executed my strategy pretty well.

Event comments:

I have to say that it is impressive to move that many people through three sports that efficiently. It is tough that we have to wait so long after transition closes before our race starts, but they do a great job overall. They could have used more porta-potties and better stocked them with TP near the start. My brother got screwed when one of the water stations ran out, but he probably should have hydrated better as well.

Last updated: 2007-08-27 12:00 AM
00:33:32 | 1640 yards | 02m 02s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/521
Overall: 1318/3928
Performance: Good
Suit: Sleeveless
Course: In Monroe harbor, south to buoy, north along harbor wall to swim out.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 68F / 20C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Good Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
Time: 05:23
Performance: Below average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Below average
01:22:13 | 24.85 miles | 18.14 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/521
Overall: 2571/3928
Performance: Below average
HR around 157
Wind: Some
Course: North on a closed section of Lake Shore Drive in downtown Chicago, with two loops. Beautiful views of Chicago on a great day.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 100
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Average Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 02:22
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Below average
Jumping off bike Below average
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:53:08 | 06.21 miles | 08m 34s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/521
Overall: 1288/3928
Performance: Good
Too high.
Course: Sunny course around museum campus.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
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: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5