Patriot's Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Bath, Pennsylvania
United States
piranha sports
Total Time = 1h 59m 49s
Overall Rank = 157/170
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Last year I did this as my second race, and it was a real gut-check - I panicked in the water and almost hyperventilated, and slipped my chain on the bike course and had to figure out how to get it back on because I had never slipped a chain. Ended up finishing as one of the last ones - which doesn't bother me, because I'm no speed demon, but I thought I would have done better. That being said, I started getting nervy Friday.

Saturday I drove up to Bath for the packet pick-up and the meeting. At that point, we were to be swimming around the lake and through the channel, which is what looks like a triangle shaped addition that juts out of the natural body of the lake, maybe ten feet across. I wasn't happy about that, because it looked like it was four feet deep at it's deepest point in the center, and given that, could maybe hold two swimmers side by side before things started looking like a Maytag - or athletes just ran through the channel. Talked to a few of the other athletes, all of whom seemed more nervous than me - a true first - asking me if I did this race last year, so it was nice to give them my opinions and advice - even if I stunk last year.

Got up at 3:50 and poured a big cup of coffee, had a bagel and peanut butter while Heather woke up and got ready. We were out the door by 4:45 to get up there by 6 or so - ended up getting there at 5:45 and had an Ensure as soon as I got out of the car. Before dawn broke, it was under 60 degrees and a tad chilly in a t shirt and shorts.

Was marked, picked up my chip and hit transition. Set up my gear, Heather took my tri bag back to the car and I realized that I left my bike gloves in the bag, so had to hoof it back to the car to get them. Got back, spoke to some of the guys around me - all of whom were great, more questions for the "veteran" about the triathlon, ate a banana, some shot bloks, and had a few electrolyte pills.
Event warmup:

Not a thing. Heather helped me stretch a little. We weren't allowed in the water to warm up, which was a bummer - I like getting in the water to burn off some adrenalin before the gun. Quick pre-race meeting again - they changed the swim course and pulled the channel out of the swim course, so I was happy.
  • 18m 49s
  • 650 meters
  • 02m 53s / 100 meters

In the first wave. Only two waves for the sprint, which was close to 200 people, so each wave was huge, and as the race was wetsuit legal (and me in my trusty tri-shorts), I stuck to BOP starting out. The first 50m were pretty bad - a lot of jostling, more than last week, and probably the most I had encountered. Because I haven't had much experience with the washing-machine start, I kept stopping after being hit, but then I reminded myself to stop stopping and keep swimming. After the first 100m, things smoothed out and I felt much better. The water was really clear, tried to draft but being in BOP, wasn't able to find anyone that I wouldn't end up swimming in to. The last 150m I started to turn it on and pass people - just as the speedsters from the second wave started shooting past us. Shoulders held up well, pulled through the back, so I'm pleased about that, and I felt strong leaving the water, so I felt good about that. Faster than last year by 15 seconds.
What would you do differently?:

To be honest, not much, based on the circumstances. Maybe start more towards MOP, but with no warm up and the first 50 jitters, that may have backfired. The only way to get faster is either go TI whole hog, or swim my sizeable butt off.
Transition 1
  • 02m 20s

The transition timing is weird in the Patriots - there's a timing mat when you leave the swim, and one when you enter transition after about a 50 yard run/walk. I have no idea where this time is measured from - maybe the mat at the water is to make sure you come out. I'm not sure.

Didn't have much problem getting up the hill and into T1, felt good out of the water, unlike last year, where I was sucking wind and trying to warm up from being in REALLY cold water without a wetsuit. Only problem in T1 was that one of my socks didn't get on completely and had a big sock wad up at the toes of my right foot, but I didn't want to waste the time to fix it and just got moving. Jogged out of transition with the bike, popped an electrolyte pill on the way.
What would you do differently?:

I may have to go sockless and get legitimate tri bike shoes, especially for the Patriots, where all transitions are on grass, which is wonderful - beats the tenderfoot death march of last week.
  • 59m 9s
  • 15 miles
  • 15.22 mile/hr

Left like a shot (well, at least for me) out of T1 and mashed hard for the first mile and a half in the big ring. I did pretty well on the hills - after all of the riding this year, I know how to attack them better, although still far from great, was still getting passed. My top speed on the downhills was 28.8 mph, so I was able to get down as much as I could. Tried to take in as much HEED as I could, but I still have this balance issue when I reach down to the bottles, don't know what it is. When I passed the place where I slipped my chain last year with no incident, I knew I was gonna be ok.

The second half was pretty tough. My back flared up really bad, and I had to stand up a lot to get some relief. I gutted through it as much as I could, but I noticeably slowed down. Also, my legs were really punishing me for pushing so hard on the hills on the first half - they were hurting pretty bad.

Faster than last year by 4:20, but I was hoping for better, considering the slipped chain last year. Then again, maybe the time spent last year fixing the chain saved my legs enough for me to push harder on the back of the course, I don't know.
What would you do differently?:

Again, not much. I pushed as hard as I could for as long as I could, and I left everything I had out there. I'm hoping the chiropractor can help with the back pain so I can push harder. I need to learn to take in fluids while moving rather than slowing down to do it. I was happy with my gear-changing decisions and my cornering ability, which has improved since last year.
Transition 2
  • 01m 39s

Had to run around the Lake administration building to get to transition rather than right off the street. Surprisingly, I was able to run as soon as I got off the bike. Racked fast, got the shoes off and running shoes on (and fixed that sock), popped two electrolytes, and started moving.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.
  • 37m 54s
  • 3.1 miles
  • 12m 14s  min/mile

I have a lot of problems with the run, nothing new. I keep stopping, especially early in the run, but this week was much better than last week. I attribute that to the electrolytes and the increased intake of liquids during the bike and the transitions. I think I twisted something in my lower leg on Friday, because it was bothering me the entire run - it's not a sprain, but it was throbbing. If I had to guess, I'd say I walked about a third of a mile total, maybe a little more - I think I may have left too much out on the bike course. The rest of the time would pass as running. Like all of my other races, after the turn around I was able to get in a good rhythm. One guy caught up to me and he and I ran the last half-mile or so together, with both of us going at a full sprint through the chute. To be honest, I didn't think I had it in me. Faster than last year by a minute even.
What would you do differently?:

Run more. I need to break this wall down and just learn to keep moving. That being said, it was probably the best run for me overall in a tri setting in terms of total distance ran, pace, how I felt, et cetera. Again, left everything out there.
Post race
Warm down:

Cheered on the other runners - it was nice to give the support to other racers as they hit the chute. Grabbed a coke and some pretzels, talked to High Road Cycles, who had a tent.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Training. Simple as that. I need to train more effectively and drop some weight. I think this was the best I could do - like I said, I left everything out there, and I'm pleased overall.

Event comments:

I love the Patriots. It's a nice small race on a challenging course. I think it's great they added a Half-Iron lite 50 this year, it was nice catching some of the first bikers back before I left - the first one entered transition as I was bagging up my stuff. Those athletes have it going on.

Last updated: 2008-06-29 12:00 AM
00:18:49 | 650 meters | 02m 53s / 100meters
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 136/170
Performance: Good
Suit: Tri Shorts
Course: Perimeter course around Evergreen Lake within 10 feet of shore around the lake as outlined by buoys.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 78F / 26C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 02:20
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Good
00:59:09 | 15 miles | 15.22 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 154/170
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: 15 mile circuit. First half is all hills - either inclines or declines, some big inclines, no true flats. The second half is more flat - definitely less hills, still slight inclines or declines.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Not enough
Time: 01:39
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Average
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:37:54 | 03.1 miles | 12m 14s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 165/170
Performance: Good
Course: Out and back. Gradual declines and inclines save for the hill approaching the turn-around and water station.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
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?
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Below average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4