See Jane Tri - TriathlonSprint

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Pleasanton, California
United States
See Jane Run
Total Time = 1h 11m 21s
Overall Rank = 143/786
Age Group = 30-34
Age Group Rank = 18/141
Pre-race routine:

I got pretty much zero sleep (certainly less than two hours). I wasn't nervous about this race at all because I haven't been training swim and bike so I was just doing it for fun. But somehow my body didn't know that, I guess.

Anyway. I packed the night before, plus laced my shoes with Yankz. I also lubed up my shoes since I was going sockless. I woke up at 5:30 a.m. and was on my way with Michael and Shizu by 6:15 a.m., right on schedule. I had a slightly panicked moment when putting my bike on the car. I heard something fall off but couldn't see anything in the dark. Eventually I decided to not worry about it and at the race site I saw that it had been part of the mechanism for attaching my U-lock to the bike. Oh well.

The race organizers had suggested getting to the site by 6 a.m., but my wave wasn't scheduled to start until 8:15 a.m., so ha, no way am I getting there that early. I got there at 7:15 a.m. and it turned out fine. The bike racks were pretty close to full but I ended up with a spot that was really well positioned -- far away from the swim exit but right next to the bike entrance and exit and fairly close to the run exit. Why would people not be racking their bikes there?

Everything went really smoothly, despite the fact that it was a pretty crowded race. I ran into Cynthia (movingsouth) and she ended up body-marking me. I then wandered down to the water to try and decide whether I should wear my wetsuit. The water felt great and I saw that most people were going without, so I figured what the hell, no wetsuit for me. After futzing around a little bit longer in transition I went back to the water to watch the first "comfort" wave go off and warm up a little.

I ate a Clif Bar for breakfast on the way and drank a little Gatorade. I skipped the pre-race gel.
Event warmup:

I swam about 100-200 yards just to get used to the water. I found Cynthia again a few minutes before my wave and she gave me the great advice of starting to the far right to avoid the traffic jam around the buoys. Then they were calling my group so I waded over and ick, the sludge on the bottom of the lake was literally up to my knees in places. All the women were groaning about it. Fortunately, it was much less messy on the right.
  • 10m 8s
  • 400 yards
  • 02m 30s / 100 yards

We started about mid-calf-deep in the water. It took a few seconds of running in the water to get where it was deep enough to swim. Thank God I stayed on the outer right like Cynthia recommended because I had clear water for almost the entire swim. And yes, I'm super slow, but in every race I've done I've had to wrestle with quite a few other slow swimmers, especially around the buoys.

I fell into a comfortable rhythm pretty easily and my sighting was awesome. I'd been a little concerned that I would struggle with swimming 400 yards straight, but I felt fine (and I do believe it was 400 yards, or awfully close). My hips were sinking without the wetsuit but I never regretted not wearing it, and I doubt I would've gained enough time to make up for taking it off in T1.

I had to laugh near the end when I noticed that all the other BOPers around me were doing mixes of freestyle and breaststroke, most of them stopping for breaks or rotating onto their backs. I was able to swim straight through just fine, but I'm so damned slow that the flounderers were right with me. *sigh*

I'd swam a total of 2,800 yards this month, and none at all in August, so my goals coming into this race were to get out of the water feeling fresh and ready to bike. I didn't care one bit about my swim time. With that in mind, I'm perfectly pleased with this swim.
What would you do differently?:

Swim more, of course. But I'd rather not.
Transition 1
  • 02m 1s

It was a short run to my bike. I passed a whole bunch of people who were clearly wiped out from the swim. It took a little longer than I would've liked to clean off my feet, but otherwise, an acceptable T1.
What would you do differently?:

Remember my squirt water bottle to make it easier to wash off the feet.
  • 31m 57s
  • 11 miles
  • 20.66 mile/hr

There's no way this course was 11 miles. My bike computer showed 9.6 miles when I got home, so that included the short walk from transition to my car (since I never have learned to turn off the bike computer). I'm guessing this was about 9.5 miles? Also, there's no way in hell I averaged 20+ mph.

This bike felt fine. The course starts with a short but easy climb from the park to the main road. After that they somehow managed to find a loop that was almost entirely downhill, it seemed. I passed loads of people, didn't get passed much myself, and most of the people who passed me I managed to keep in my sight for the rest of the bike.

It did get pretty crowded in places, and I had to brake on some open flats where the road wasn't closed and all we had was a bike lane. That was a little annoying.

There was one hill -- short, but pretty steep -- near the end. Two or three women were walking their bikes up it and the rest of us just slogged on up. At the top the volunteers told us we were close to finishing, and for once they were right.

A few times I deliberately slowed down or shifted to a lower gear when my quads were aching and I thought about the run. That's kind of unusual for me -- usually I find a happy pace on the bike and just stick with it. I'm assuming that my lack of bike fitness was the issue here.
What would you do differently?:

Bike more. I only had 20 miles in September and no biking in August. But I did just fine considering.
Transition 2
  • 01m 37s

This should've been faster, but I struggled with getting my feet into the running shoes with Yankz. I'm guessing the laces were too tight.
What would you do differently?:

Practice shoving my feet into my shoes.
  • 25m 38s
  • 3.1 miles
  • 08m 16s  min/mile

Run! For the record, there's no way I was this fast -- My Garmin had splits of about 8:30/8:45/8:10. I think the course was closer to 3 miles. But I'll take it anyway.

I grabbed my race belt and Garmin heading out of transition, so spent the first 100 yards or so fiddling with those. I ended up not using the Garmin for pacing at all -- I just ran as hard as I felt I could -- but it was really nice to have it for mile markers.

I felt a little rough coming off the bike, and very early on I realized it was hot and dry and that wasn't going to feel good. But I settled pretty easily into a good pace and passed all kinds of people.

The hills, though. Man. They were super short but so steep, and almost everyone was walking up them. I decided I wanted to run them, even though it was doubtful running would be faster than walking. The part that really sucked was the downhills, which were too rocky to risk running fast. There was one nice section of the run that wound through trees and was very shady and pretty, but the rest of it was very exposed.

At about the halfway point there was another hill and I saw Michael and Shizu at the top, so I put a smile on my face and charged on up. Heh. Sometimes I hate seeing friends when I'm racing because I feel compelled to look as awesome as possible for them. But it helps because it does make me push harder. I saw them again about a half mile later, at the bottom of another hill. They were yelling about how easy the hill looked and I groaned as I passed them. Shizu told me I had to say I love hills, so I yelled it and the women around me all laughed.

After that last hill it was a pretty easy run to the finish line. I ended up racing a woman the last quarter mile, but I was feeling kind of awful and as soon as I saw she wasn't in my age group I let her pull ahead.

I'm very happy with this run. Sure, I'd like to be faster, but 11th in my AG is great, and between the hills and the heat it really was a tough run.
What would you do differently?:

Not let that woman beat me to the finish line!
Post race
Warm down:

I quickly downed a bottle of water then went to transition to get my flip flops and put on some real shorts. After that we grabbed cups of the free beer they were giving away and settled down on the grass to watch the rest of the finishers. It was so totally relaxing. Michael announced that this was the best race ever, but I think that was his fourth (fifth?) cup of beer talking. He does love free beer.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Very little swim/bike training. My swim in particular sucks A LOT, and obviously I'm undertrained. But earlier this year, when I was swimming three our four days a week and 20,000 yards a month, I was still painfully slow, and even at my peak swim fitness I doubt I would've been more than a minute faster on this swim. I do believe that I could get faster, but to be perfectly honest it would take a hell of a lot more work than I'm willing to put in. So yeah, at this point I'm OK with sucking on the swim and doing what I can to make up for it on the run (and the bike, to some degree). I mean, 103rd on the swim and 18th overall? Fine by me.

Event comments:

I really like this race. I volunteered at it last year and it was the first triathlon I ever saw in person. I promised myself then that I would race it in 2008, and I did! I just really like the vibe here. There's lots of support from both volunteers and other racers, and there are women of all different athletic abilities. The best part was the end -- I have never seen so many people stick around for the end of a race. There were huge cheers for the last half dozen finishers.

Last updated: 2008-09-19 12:00 AM
00:10:08 | 400 yards | 02m 30s / 100yards
Age Group: 103/141
Overall: 621/786
Performance: Average
Suit: None
Course: A simple rectangle around two buoys.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Average Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 02:01
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
00:31:57 | 11 miles | 20.66 mile/hr
Age Group: 25/141
Overall: 183/786
Performance: Average
Wind: None
Course: One large loop with a short out-and-back section. Definitely not 11 miles.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Average Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 01:37
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
00:25:38 | 03.1 miles | 08m 16s  min/mile
Age Group: 11/141
Overall: 79/786
Performance: Good
Course: A winding course on dirt trails with some paved areas at the beginning and end. Mostly flat with four (five?) short but brutal hills.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? No
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4