Black Bear Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Beltzville St. Park, Pennsylvania
United States
70F / 21C
Total Time = 2h 22m 42s
Overall Rank = 348/442
Age Group = M 30-34
Age Group Rank = 31/34
Pre-race routine:

Family and I drove from Ohio the day before. About a 6 hour drive down 80E. I had 3 hours of sleep on Friday night. I setup a BT tent pre-race where I met about 8 BT'ers that day of packet pickup on Saturday. Always cool to see new BT'ers, forumites and lurkers alike.
Event warmup:

Nothing. Just dreading the swim.
  • 25m 28s
  • 820 yards
  • 03m 06s / 100 yards

That water was SOOOO COLD. It finally convinced me that I needed a wetsuit for the next races. It took me until the first bouy to get my breathing regulated. Up until then I couldn't muster a freestyle for more than a few strokes. Mostly breast and side.

On the longest part of the course from end to end, I progressively got better as I got used to the water tempurature and was able to swim about 25 yards freestyle with short breaks of sidestroke to the side and rest.

I was going slow and had to pay a lot of attention in staying at the outer edges so as to not get swum over by the waves behind me.
What would you do differently?:

Get a wetsuit. PERIOD.
Transition 1
  • 05m

The run from the swim to T1 was long. I walked most of it.

I took this slow as usual. Didn't want to forget anything especially my sunglasses. Socks were a little difficult to put on as I didn't get my feet dried enough. Put some more sunscreen on.

The bike mount went less then optimal. I didn't fall off but after the bike mount area, there was a small hill, I couldn't get my left foot clipped in (body still frozen) and had to pedal with my right leg only for a few to get up the hill to finally get the left foot clipped in.
  • 1h 14m 55s
  • 17.7 miles
  • 14.18 mile/hr

Didn't expect the hills. I do admit into going into this race totally oblivious as to the course. I did not drive the course, I heard it was hilly, but didn't think there would be nearly 5 hills requiring granny gears and another 5 more being tough too. I could have used an 10-11 toothed rear sprocket...or maybe a triple crank on the front with a smaller chainring.

I did surprise myself on the climbs. Prior to this race it has been ALL indoor an on my CyclOps trainer. I did not train to the distance yet. Max ride was 50 minutes to date. I haven't gotten outside all year. I was a little wobbly on my handling skills for the first 5 miles but settled in. Stayed out of aero for about 85% of the ride due to this. It took me about 1/4 of the course to figure out the best way to handle the gearing for the hills.

On the 5 granny-gear hills and even the others, I was able to muscle up them, passing several. I SURPRISINGLY did not get any lactic acid muscle burns on the whole course. I actually liked the hills.

You can see from my overall rank that I did best on the bike, which seems counterintuitive to me as this is the hardest for me to train.

One thing I did for the first time was to use my water bottle! Prior to this at Lonestar, I did not have the confidence and handling skills on my tri bike to reach down and pull the water bottle out from below my seat tube. I had to force myself to do this as I new if I didn't get nutrition in on the bike from the hill exertion, that I would bonk later on the run. I was able to successfully pull this off twice on the bike course at 1/3 and the 2/3 distance mark.

I fueled only with Infinit nutritions 'Fluid Energizer' premix and used about 16 oz on the course.

A note on cadence. I usually train to be around 90-95. It was more like in the mid to high 80's for the flat part. I did gradually get into the 90's for better recovery between hills.

What would you do differently?:

Better bike handling was needed. A few that I passed on the hills I then got passed by on the incredibly fast descents (what goes up must come down), I used my brakes a lot and did not gear for top-end speed going down.
Transition 2
  • 02m 44s

Nothing much to note. Drank some of the remaining bike Infinit Fluid Energizer premix before heading out on the run. Put some more sunscreen on my face and ears.
  • 34m 36s
  • 3.4 miles
  • 10m 11s  min/mile

It was a good run on trails. I prefer trails to pavement. I did not take any fluids in on the run. I seemed to have done my fluid intake perfectly on the bike and it carried me through on the run. Though if the run was longer I would have needed something.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing to do different.
Post race
Warm down:

Lot's of walking. Got some food, went down to the beach to eat it and then take a nap, I was exhausted mainly from getting about 8 hrs of sleep in two nights, not from the race itself. I have no soreness so far today (Monday). Though I did expect to be sore in the legs...nothing yet. Maybe my trainer rides did me better than I thought?

What limited your ability to perform faster:

A wetsuit. I hyperventilate when the water is cold. Even more so when it's shockingly cold and it takes me quit awhile to settle down.

Event comments:

This has been my favorite race to date. The venue was PERFECT for families with a large sandy beach and a playground. Lots of wide-open space for activities and picnic benches.

This race had the BEST course signage. You did not have to study a course map ahead of time. I only breifly look at course maps as I expect the RD's to have adequate signs and NOT having to rely on asking the volunteers where to go. There were professionally done signs and arrows everywhere to mark the bike and run course and to make sure that you didn't accidentally go on the 1/2 IM course of vice-versa.

This race also had the best post-race food to date with grilled hotdogs and very good hamburgers. Also pasta dishes, fruits and drinks.

I liked the fact that there was very little music around the transition/finish area. I liked the quiteness of the lake and area.

My kids had a lot of fun at the playground and beach too both days. I recommend families to stay at the Split Rock hotels. Indoor pools and lots of activities, they loved it.

Last updated: 2008-05-16 12:00 AM
00:25:28 | 820 yards | 03m 06s / 100yards
Age Group: 32/34
Overall: 409/442
Performance: Bad
Suit: Nothing.
Course: A box course.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 68F / 20C Current: Low
200M Perf. Bad Remainder: Below average
Breathing: Below average Drafting:
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 05:00
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Below average
01:14:55 | 17.7 miles | 14.18 mile/hr
Age Group: 30/34
Overall: 308/442
Performance: Good
Wind: Little
Course: Beautiful course. On paved roads around the park and surrounding community. The roads didn't have a berm for bikes but there was hardly any drivers out at that time of morning. At every intersection there were several police and firefighters and volunteers directing what little traffic there was. I expected and wanted to smell the aroma of breakfast and bacon cooking but didn't...I guess it was too early for the sleepy lake community.
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 02:44
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Average
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:34:36 | 03.4 miles | 10m 11s  min/mile
Age Group: 30/34
Overall: 330/442
Performance: Good
Course: Beautiful course through the woods and along the park and lake.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
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