Great swim, but way too crowded. It was a two loop course in an old gravel pit, so there was no running or wading to start or finish. The water was warm (about 78 deg F), and wetsuits were allowed. The two bad things were the crowd and the sun glare. The longest leg on each loop was right into the sun, so you had to give it your best guess to stay on course. They should have split us into two waves because going around every buoy was a nightmare. It was so crowded; I was basically treading water and waiting for people to get out of the way. Otherwise, I felt relaxed and good on the swim. I averaged about a 1:52 / 100m pace which isn’t bad for the crowds and about what I average on good training swims.
What would you do differently?:
Try to breathe bilaterally. I breathed unilaterally which was okay during the swim, but it made my neck sore for the bike.
Not a bad transition. I did take my time a bit as I wanted to get plenty of food down prior to the bike. As usual, the damn wetsuit took forever to get off, but otherwise, a pretty smooth transition.
Good course. As described in the pre-race brief, definitely a lot of rolling hills, with only one or two notable climbs. Of course, when Norine reads this, I’m sure she’ll think, “…hills? You mean those speed bumps you have out there on the East Coast?!” (Norine lives and races in Colorado Springs and now Denver, by the way). Anyway, there were a lot of turns and a lot of down hills to make up for the climbs. It was pretty windy but due to the constant changes in direction, the wind ended up being a non-factor. The course was one big 20 mile loop, followed by two shorter loops – about 10 miles each. Those courses are good and bad: good because you know about where you are, and what’s in front of you; but bad because…..you know where you are and what’s in front of you! I was only passed a couple times, which I’m okay with on this distance.
Not bad. Could have gone a little faster, but this was the part I was most nervous about – the transition from bike to run.
I couldn’t believe how good my legs felt at the start! Granted, the run started out downhill, which was huge. At about mile 2, the first uphill hit us and I felt every single mile of that bike ride! I couldn’t believe the difference from downhill running after that ride to the uphill running. Around mile 3, there was a long downhill and I just remembered how much I wasn’t looking forward to running up that hill on the way back. It was an out and back course – plenty of shade, good breeze, and a slight uphill at the end. The best part of the run was that I saw a guy in my age group pass me right in the first mile. At the time, I had no idea what my place was overall or in my age group. But, I managed to keep the guy in sight the whole time. Around mile 6 (coming up that big hill) I gained a lot of ground and then blew past him! I ended up beating him by about 2 minutes and secured 1st in my age group. Felt great!
First distance for this race. Great distance. Until I do a full half-iron, this is my favorite! I'd rather do this again than another Olympic.
Last updated: 2008-07-24 12:00 AM
75F / 24C
Overall Rank = 25/105
Age Group = M (30-34)
Age Group Rank = 1/9