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New Jersey State Triathlon - Sprint Distance - TriathlonSprint

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West Windsor, New Jersey
United States
CGI Racing
Total Time = 2h 05m 57s
Overall Rank = 1005/1020
Age Group = First Time Fem
Age Group Rank = 125/130
Pre-race routine:

Got up at 4am and tried to eat (banana, peanut butter, a few bites of bagel and a 20 oz. bottle of Accelerade). Checked out of the hotel room and got to the race site around 5:30. Got there early enough to get the end spot on my row (first rack coming out of the water) and got organized. I tried really hard to not pop the Minnie Mouse balloon the woman next to me had that kept blowing into me (I mean we were the first rack, did she need it to find her bike?).
Event warmup:

Got in the water and did just a brief swim. Really not much of a warm up. Stretched a little while waiting for the 9 waves before mine to go off, but I mostly stood around. I'm not a speed demon and figured the swim would help get me a little warmed up.
  • 14m 21s
  • 547 yards
  • 02m 37s / 100 yards

I had practiced group starts, but all from standing, so this was new. It was a good swim, especially since I hadn't been in the pool much lately. I wore my nose plug to help with my breathing since I knew from my OWS practice that I had a hard time breathing when I get out where I can't stand. I kept moving forward and only came up to do some breast stroke 3 times for only a few strokes each. My form definitely can improve. Even with my poor form, this was my best even rank-wise. I did have a bit of a foot cramp but luckily that went away pretty quickly. It was nice to pass a few people from the previous wave, but it's pretty sad when women breast stroking and backstroking are going faster than you.
What would you do differently?:

Get in the pool more and really work on my form (something to work at in the off season). I need to work on getting my legs up more and have a decent body roll in the open water.
Transition 1
  • 04m 18s

The run up to transition was pretty painful (concrete boat ramp and then rough pavement). My rack was the first on the right after entering transition from the swim, but that meant a very long run (well in my case mostly walk) in my bike shoes out to where we could mount. I was pretty organized in transition and kept moving so most of the time was simply moving through transition. I couldn't believe there were people already coming back from the bike from the earliest waves. Wow!
What would you do differently?:

Not have a bad achilles heel so I could maybe hope to run in my shoes. And I definitely need to work on toughening up the soles of my feet to handle running barefoot over pavement.
  • 47m 31s
  • 11.5 miles
  • 14.52 mile/hr

I was doing well on the bike for the first 8.5 miles. I passed way more riders than passed me and I was feeling good on the bike. Then coming around one of the last corners I heard a pop and then a ping and my bike seat started to move. I pulled over and found that my seat post had cracked along the back. I was able to sit on my seat, but I had to sit up toward the front so that really caused my back to hurt from the change in position, not to mention the girl parts. I also didn't feel like I could push it (my pace over the first 7 miles which had most of the "hills" was 15.25 and for the last 3 miles it was 14.25 so definitely slowed up some). I did manage to pass 3 people after that so I was being as aggressive as I could. I think my pace could have been over 15 mph if I hadn't had to stop and if I could have really pushed the end. But it was a good ride besides that and I felt strong. I probably could have pushed it a little harder, but I wasn't sure how much energy I could use up before heading into the run and wanted to be conservative there. It was still one of my faster rides on similar roads, so I'm happy with it.
What would you do differently?:

Not have my seatpost break :) But seriously, besides that I think I rode well considering I haven't really been training super hard. More hill training would help me really power up the little hills on this course. My pace would drop about 5mph going up the hills, so if I can get my legs stronger for the hills, I can lose less speed on the little rollers.
Transition 2
  • 03m 24s

It was an even longer run back to my rack because we first had to go over a small grassy hill, then across another street, then up a small grassy hill before even entering transition (the mats were in there somewhere). I couldn't rack my bike by the seat and the others on my rack had really crowded my spot so I took a few extra moments to get my bike properly racked (and pick up a bike I knocked off...whoops). Once I started changing shoes everything was fine and I was off, taking it easy at first.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing I could have done better other than run with my bike but was afraid of my achilles getting hurt in the bike shoes.
  • 56m 24s
  • 3.11 miles
  • 18m 08s  min/mile

I mostly walked (and obviously quiet slowly) except down a few hills and at the end. I was just out to have fun at that point so I talked to people coming the other way. At first my legs were hurting from trying to keep the pressure off my seat on the bike so had to work that out. I did run the last bit after the path re-entered the finishing area and tried to run (as opposed to my normal shuffle) through the finishing chute so I'd look good for my finishing photo (they haven't been posted yet so no clue how that worked). According to the 5k run splits I was DFL on the run. Yeah, I managed to come in last at something!

The finish was great and I came down the chute on my own so there was plenty of time for the announcer to call out my name, club, and hometown. That kind of finish is awesome!
What would you do differently?:

If this had been my only race (or last race for the summer) I would have risked running more. But, really, I haven't been able to run (or even walk) since the beginning of May because of my achilles so I couldn't have run much more than I did. I do need to work harder at walking faster. I'm a very slow walker naturally. I need to realize it's a race and try to push it somewhat and get those legs turning over.
Post race
Warm down:

I stretched a little bit but since I hadn't really pushed myself on the run, I kind of counted that as my cooldown.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I had alot of injuries coming into the race. Besides my left achilles tendon, my right one was tender, I had plantar fasciitis in my left heel (that ended up hurting the worst after the race), my right hip and knee have problems, and I had strained my left quad about 2 weeks earlier. Oh and I totally didn't lose any weight in all this training so carrying around all those extra pounds doesn't help. And the seat post was another problem. Basically I'm a hot mess :) But I had fun anyway!

Event comments:

It was a great race for my first time. It was a large race with 2 distances (olympic started after the sprint) so there were tons of racers (2500 registered). All the organizers and volunteers were wonderful and there was great support by the police and public works so the bike course felt very safe. The course is pretty flat, so that makes it perfect for a new triathlete. I definitely will consider coming back next year to see if I can improve (or maybe try the olympic distance).

This was the target race for DC Tri's New Triathlete Program, so it was great to finally share the race experience with everyone from that (plus the club had over 200 people registered in the race so the support there was great...lots of "go DC Tri" on the run).

I'm proud that I went to the race and finished (and wasn't DFL overall). Considering all my injuries and the fact I've had some motivation issues including a few weeks with no training as recently as 2 weeks ago, I did well. I beat my worst case scenario (2:30) and came in just about what I thought I would do (I had guessed 15 min swim, 45 min bike, 55 min run, 10 min transitions). This was a big learning experience and I was out to have fun and know that I could finish. Now I have some motivation to keep with the sport and improve.

I'm pretty sore today (24 hours after finishing) and stayed home from work because I deserve a day of lounging around.

Last updated: 2008-02-14 12:00 AM
00:14:21 | 547 yards | 02m 37s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/130
Overall: 814/1020
Performance: Good
Suit: Short sleeve tri top and tri shorts
Course: The course for the sprint went out to one buoy (with a nice power line tower right behind it for sighting) and then took a left turn into the boat ramp exit.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 81F / 27C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Average Drafting: Below average
Waves: Average Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 04:18
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed:
00:47:31 | 11.5 miles | 14.52 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/130
Overall: 932/1020
Performance: Good
Wind: Little
Course: The course went on the roads around the park with very few small hills and the roads were either closed or there was light traffic.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 03:24
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Below average
Racking bike Below average
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:56:24 | 03.11 miles | 18m 08s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/130
Overall: 1019/1020
Performance: Below average
Course: The course went along paved paths in the park with a few small hills. It was out and back.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
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:
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2008-07-28 10:17 AM

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Greenbelt, MD
Subject: New Jersey State Triathlon - Sprint Distance

2008-07-28 10:38 AM
in reply to: #1564065

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Subject: RE: New Jersey State Triathlon - Sprint Distance

Good for you AmbulanceDriver! You pushed through the pain and finished.

Keep on rockin' it.

2008-07-28 10:42 PM
in reply to: #1564065

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Subject: RE: New Jersey State Triathlon - Sprint Distance

congratulations on pushing through this race!!!  that's crazy about your seatpost, that takes mental strength to keep going.  i hope you take some time to let all your injuries heal up!

i noticed all the DC tri people, they seemed to have great camaraderie.  congrats on finding a great group!  keep up the good work! 

2008-07-29 6:08 PM
in reply to: #1564065

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Berkeley, Calif.
Bronze member
Subject: RE: New Jersey State Triathlon - Sprint Distance
Congratulations! You accomplished so much in this race -- a solid swim, a great bike despite mechanical difficulties, and you stuck with the run. And you clearly had a great time! Take good care of yourself now, and hopefully you'll get to do another race this year.
2008-07-30 8:18 AM
in reply to: #1564065

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Subject: RE: New Jersey State Triathlon - Sprint Distance

Great job, and congratulations!!  I have to work on getting my feet tougher too, because the boat ramp was a little painful for me too.    Oh, and when the volunteer told me to dismount my bike, I thought to myself, "here....are we starting the 5k early?"  My rack was like 6 rows from the lake side, so I felt your pain there too.

Way to overcome the broken seat post.  That took a lot of mental fortitude itself!

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