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Silverlake Sprint Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Pearland, Texas
United States
65F / 18C
Total Time = 1h 00m 8s
Overall Rank = /~400
Age Group = M50-54
Age Group Rank = 3/16
Pre-race routine:

Woke at 4:13 after a good night's sleep. Drove the 75 miles to the race site while eating my standard oatmeal bar, Clif protein bar, and drinking a Power Edge.

Something "funny" while getting body-marked. When asked my race age, I said 50, and a 20-something girl next to me remarked, "Yeah, way to go!" in a very surprised tone. She almost seemed shocked that an old guy could/would be competing. (She's probably a newbie.)

Today was going to be all about going fast and lean. Carried a small pack with just the bare essentials; nothing extra, no distractions. No watch, no bike computer, 10oz of G-ade, no nutrition, no sunglasses. Just a bike, 2 pair of shoes, helmet, small towel, goggles, swim cap, and race belt. (I did have back-up stuff in the truck.)

Got TA set up (doesn't take long when you only have a few things) and got chipped, and hit the portacan before the lines got crazy long. Typical stuff.

Didn't have any specific time goals other than go hard and try to be sub-1 hour. Last year I was 1:00:28; surely I could drop 29 seconds somewhere, somehow. Afterall, I'm an IronMan. (Yeah right)
Event warmup:

Warmup: NOT.

It was a pretty chilly morning and when I got out of the water after swimming about 200 yds, I was cold. The 74° water, 61° air, and standing around 25 minutes got to me. Never got the shakes, but was very close.

Was pretty stiff and tight by the time my wave went off at 7:15.
  • 10m 6s
  • 437 yards
  • 02m 19s / 100 yards

They combined us with the 45-49 guys, so we had a moderately sized wave. More folks to race with. Typical amount of contact, no big deal.

Not sure if it was the coldness (of me & the water), but I had a hard time getting smoothed out and in any kind of rhythm. Felt like my heart was coming out of my chest. Never got panicky or anxious, but really had to work at getting calmed down and under control. Got a big'o gulp of water and felt like I had to burp for the next 50 yds.

Easy course to navigate. Never looked for the turn buoy, just sighted on the multi-story, million-dollar house that was lined up with the outbound leg.

By the time I made the turn, my heart and mind had settled down, and I actually think I negative split the swim. May have kept me from being 11 minutes instead of 10. I'll take it, regardless.

Followed another swimmer into the finish as a couple of the fast ladies caught us despite our 3 minute head start.

Climbed up the steps and out of water. Time to really race now.
What would you do differently?:

Anybody who's read any of my RRs knows about my swimming woes. Nothing new today. (30 seconds slower than last year.)
Transition 1
  • 01m 24s

When you're a poor swimmer, you have to be good at something to stay in the race, and I always do well at transitions. Today was no different.

They put us old guys on the rack in the very back, so it was a longish run in & back out with the bike. Ran as fast as I could, and never let up from this point on.

Fastest in AG. (Passed several faster swimmers.)
What would you do differently?:

Could probably save a few seconds by pre-clipping the shoes onto the bike, but other than that, nothing.
  • 27m 4s
  • 10 miles
  • 22.17 mile/hr

As I was getting under way, a guy (let's call him #2) hollered out, "Have a good ride" as he blew by me. I saw he was in my AG and the race was on. I caught and passed him within a mile and I think it surprised him. We leap-frogged each other several more times as we passed bunches of riders from the previous 4 waves (younger guys), including guys in our AG.

Lots of turns, corners, and slow downs. Stood up and mashed while getting back up to speed. Without a computer I didn't know how fast I was in the straights, but it was in the 24-25 range. All the slow downs kept the average low.

Between catching #2 when it was my turn, and trying to push the pace, I was breathing hard the whole time and not ashamed to admit it. Only drank about 4oz from the aerobottle.

About 2 miles to go I put the hammer down and passed #2 for good, or so I thought... Right at the end as I was getting out of my shoes on the bike, he passed me and beat me by 6 seconds.

Dismounted cleanly at the line and ran barefoot into T2. (I'm thinking the spectators thought I might actually be good at this.)
What would you do differently?:

Nothing really, pushed as hard as I could. The only time I wasn't at or near LT was in the No Passing zone when we (#2 & I) were stuck behind a guy on a mountain bike. (30 seconds slower than last year, no doubt, because of it.) Dang the bad luck.
Transition 2
  • 00m 42s

Another great transition. Me and #2 tied for 1st in our AG. Very fast compared to the field.
What would you do differently?:

Can't think of anything I could do differently. Pretty much nailed it, but I need to get better at getting out of the shoes on the bike. (Only been practicing it for a week now.)
  • 20m 54s
  • 3 miles
  • 06m 58s  min/mile

Came out of T2 6 seconds behind #2. Just like the bike; I let him be my pace rabbit. He was just ahead of me and I kept my eyes glued to him. I had no idea about time or position in AG, but my goal was to push harder than ever before. Make all those miles of IM work pay off for me; make it hurt.

Between being wet, the cool temp, the well-ventilated shoes, and pushing so hard, my feet were actually cold coming off the bike. They were numb stubs for the first mile and I had a pebble under the ball of right foot just to make it more interesting, but there was no stopping; just harden up and keep going. Keep chasing the rabbit.

By mile 2 I had settled into a steady striding cadence and was breathing hard. We were passing guys like crazy (a couple more in our AG), but I could never close the gap on #2. He was just up ahead, but out of reach.

In the final mile, I had something happen that I've never experienced before. I was breathing and exerting so hard, that I could barely keep my eyes open. Not sure if it was oxygen debt, pushing the LT or what, but it was weird. I was actually running a few seconds at a time with my eyes closed and then would open them slightly to make sure the road was clear. Also ran with my head tilted back and slightly to the side in an almost super-relaxed fashion. Again, very weird, but it was working for me.

Never bothered to drink anything at the aid stations, it would be over with in a few more minutes. I could drink later.

Maintained the pace, never faded, but never caught #2 as he gained a few more seconds and ended up beating me by 12 seconds.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing at all, absolutely ran as hard as I could. (1:58 faster than last year.)
Post race
Warm down:

Got de-chipped, walked around, wiped off with the ice-cold towel they gave you. Drank a water and sought out #2 guy.

#2's name was Rob and we congratulated each other on our respective efforts. It was only then that I thought about how we may have done relative to the AG. He said he thought there might be one guy in front of us. Wow! That's way cool.

Ate a couple of grinders and drank a coke (no beer here) as we waited for the early results to be posted. Sure enough, a little while later, it was confirmed; he was #2, I was #3. Awesome, I'll take it.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Swimming; just like it's been for 2-1/2 years now. Everything else has improved except that.

Event comments:

Hung around, got my plaque and podium shot, exchanged contact info with Rob, and I'll see him again in a few weeks at our next sprint.

I've raced here since they started this one 3 years ago. They've come a long way since then and each race is better run and better attended.

Last updated: 2008-05-02 12:00 AM
00:10:06 | 437 yards | 02m 19s / 100yards
Age Group: 9/16
Overall: 0/~400
Performance: Below average
Suit: DeSoto tri shorts
Course: Inverted "V" in a fair-sized subdivision lake, 200 meters out & back. Well marked, very easy to navigate.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 74F / 23C Current:
200M Perf. Below average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Below average Drafting:
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 01:24
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Good
00:27:04 | 10 miles | 22.17 mile/hr
Age Group: 3/16
Overall: 0/~400
Performance: Good
Wind: None
Course: Neighborhood and subdivision roads. Lots of turns & corners, a "technical section" with a No Passing zone, and hundreds of driveways and parked cars to be wary of.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Average Hills:
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Time: 00:42
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:20:54 | 03 miles | 06m 58s  min/mile
Age Group: 3/16
Overall: 0/~400
Performance: Good
Course: Neighborhood sidewalks and roads; watch for the curbs and cracks.
Keeping cool Good Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2008-05-20 12:28 AM

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Waller County, TX
Subject: Silverlake Sprint Triathlon

2008-05-20 9:18 AM
in reply to: #1412760

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Extreme Veteran
Leander, Texas
Subject: RE: Silverlake Sprint Triathlon
Nice race! Bummer about the mountain bike in the no passing zone. That race would be spectacular if they straightened out the bike course and lengthened it by 2-5 miles. Good job on the podium finish.
2008-05-20 11:26 AM
in reply to: #1412760

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Houston, TX
Subject: RE: Silverlake Sprint Triathlon
Great race man! Nice that you had a good battle for the bike and run, that really makes you push your self.

I also a gree it's such a great race, the bike course is out of place.
2008-05-20 12:06 PM
in reply to: #1412760

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Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: Silverlake Sprint Triathlon
Great RR! Congrats on 3rd place! AWESOME!
2008-05-20 12:32 PM
in reply to: #1412760

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Longview, TX
Subject: RE: Silverlake Sprint Triathlon
Great race!
2008-05-20 3:39 PM
in reply to: #1412760

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Atlanta, Georgia
Bronze member
Subject: RE: Silverlake Sprint Triathlon

Nice RR - #2's gonna be looking over his shoulder for you from now on..


2008-05-21 8:38 AM
in reply to: #1412760

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Subject: RE: Silverlake Sprint Triathlon
Great job Jim. Always nice to have a rabbit in your age group to keep yourself going harder and pacing yourself.. Awesome
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