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Land Between the Lakes Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Albert Lea, Minnesota
United States
Tri Minnesota Racing Series
50F / 10C
Total Time = 1h 30m 17s
Overall Rank = 21/116
Age Group = 25-29
Age Group Rank = 3/14
Pre-race routine:

Woke up at 4:45 and had the customary peanut butter and sliced bananas on toast. Glanced at the thermometer at my parent's place. It was a paltry 33 degrees in the morning. I had to sit in my car and wait for the windows to defrost, all the while wondering just why I was doing a triathlon this morning. I got to the race site just as transition was opening up so I was able to snake a primo spot in transition. I got myself body marked after that. What's this? Lucky number 21. Winner, winner, chicken dinner!
Event warmup:

I jogged briefly up the trail that we were running on for about 3-4 minutes, knowing I couldn't possibly get warm enough for the water I was about to enter.
  • 07m 44s
  • 440 yards
  • 01m 46s / 100 yards

I jumped into the water about 5 minutes before the start. Oh, baby that'll wake you up in the morning that's for sure. Easily the coldest water I've been in. They said it was 59 the night before, but then it got down to mid-thirties overnight so who knows what it was at race time. I put my face in and swam a little trying to get used to it. I'm glad I wore 2 swim caps. A good neoprene one may have helped.

It was a floating start so that was kinda cool. Just a couple thousand more people and it would feel like an ironman start. Even so, this start was violent too. I got smacked around and did some smacking of my own. Things eased up once I swam a little off course. I don't know why I stray to the right so much. I need to work on that. Other than that breathing was good. I didn't get short of breath like I normally have during the start so that was good. I was hoping to be a little faster, but I didn't get into a good stroke until maybe the last 150 or so. We excited on steps and there were guys pulling us out of the water. Thanks for the lift dude!
What would you do differently?:

Better sighting. Find a better way to get into a good rhythm.
Transition 1
  • 01m 8s

I'm not sure if it was the cold swim or what but I was feeling a little disoriented. Kinda felt like a frat boy on a bender. It was a short run into transition so I was to my bike before I got ahold of the wetsuit zipper. Got that peeled down and started stepping on the legs to pull the feet out while putting on the helmet. I about fell on my azz doing that, but managed to steady myself on the rack. Took a look at the arm warmers and said screw it. Shoes on. Bike off and I was going. Crossed the mount line and hopped on the seat. Uh-oh, now I'm wobbling heading for a parked car, and next thing I know I'm on the ground. Crap! That was smooth! What a time saver too! I guess I'll just clip in and push off the old fashioned way.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. Not crash, but I guess the crash time was factored into the bike portion. I had the 8th fastest T1
  • 57m 49s
  • 20.1 miles
  • 20.86 mile/hr

After the little crash I was pissed so I pedaled pretty hard out of the park. Got down in aero and was in for a surprise. During the spill I had managed to snap the left elbow rest in half. So for the entirety of the bike portion I had to ride with my left elbow on half a pad and ended up putting most of the weight on my right arm. My upper body and back actually got a little sore during the ride due to the new position. I used this as an excuse to get out of aero to climb hills. Once we got out on the roads I immediately passed a half dozen people. I could see another dozen or so up ahead on this long stretch of road and had a pretty good feel that this was probably all of the field that was ahead of me. I pushed the pace pretty hard to catch up, but it was tough. The course wasn't bad. It was a constant stream of rollers though. Hardly any real flat sections. I regretted not having the arm warmers and my feet went numb after 5 miles or so. Oh well it was more motivation to pedal fast to keep warm. Through the rest of the bike I only managed to catch a couple more people. I only got passed a couple of times until right at the very end when about 5 guys passed me. I hoped that it was the speedy old dudes from the 2nd wave.
What would you do differently?:

Gee, not crash perhaps. And, if I do crash, make sure to give the bike a good once over. In particular make sure that the brake pads haven't moved. After the race I took a look at the rear wheel and yup, the pad was rubbing on the rim. Frickin A! Pretty sure that cost me a little bit of speed.
Transition 2
  • 00m 34s

I've been practicing getting out of my shoes while on the bike with every training ride and this part went flawlessly. Hoped off the while it was still moving and ran it in. Slapped on the shoes and grabbed visor and race number belt and was off.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. 9th fastest T2 of the day and only 7 seconds slower than the fastest
  • 23m 4s
  • 3.5 miles
  • 06m 35s  min/mile

Holy cow! Running with completely numb feet is just weird. It was kind of a surreal feeling like I was floating above the pavement, but I could feel the impact in every part of my legs except the feet. I passed couple of guys right away, wound through the park some and then up a nasty little climb that just was not fair considering we had just come off the bike. After a mile the feeling returned to the feet and things got a little easier. It got easier for others too. I got passed by a couple of guys that were just cruising. Grabbed some water at about the halfway point, a little surprised at just the one aid station. I was also surprised at the lack of people to run down. I was by myself for the majority of the run. Made it back into the park and managed a good sprint through the finish line. I finished in, guess what, 21st place. Weird I know. I'm hoping I get bib #1 next race ;)
What would you do differently?:

Run harder, I had a lot left at the end. Despite that, I was happy. I'm running a lot faster this year
Post race
Warm down:

Walked around, got some some food, chatted with my parents. Once I was done exerting myself I could really feel the cold and winds blowing across the lake. Stuck around for the awards and picked up my first hardware of the season.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

The crash. Other than that not much. I was pleased with the swim, given the conditions and the run.

Event comments:

Not bad for Minnesota in mid-May.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2009-03-26 12:00 AM
00:07:44 | 440 yards | 01m 46s / 100yards
Age Group: 7/14
Overall: 50/116
Performance: Average
Suit: QR hydrofull
Course: Triangle
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 55F / 13C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Good Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Below average
Rounding: Average
Time: 01:08
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Below average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed:
00:57:49 | 20.1 miles | 20.86 mile/hr
Age Group: 5/14
Overall: 23/116
Performance: Below average
Wind: Some
Course: Course was basically a big rectangle out in the wide open countryside.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Below average Cornering: Below average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Not enough
Time: 00:34
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:23:04 | 03.5 miles | 06m 35s  min/mile
Age Group: 4/14
Overall: 17/116
Performance: Good
Course: Wound through the park and then hit a long gradual climb and then a long gradual decline and back into the park for the finish.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? No
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2009-05-18 9:32 PM

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Ames, IA
Subject: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon

2009-05-18 9:57 PM
in reply to: #2159696

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Dodge County, MN (out in the corn)
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
Wow! That's a crazy bike story.  My husband said he heard something break and thought it was a bottle cage.  Sucks about your aerobars.  I felt pretty drunk after that swim too.  Nice job on the hardware!
2009-05-19 6:01 AM
in reply to: #2159753

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Quebec, Canada
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
Grats again on your third place Neal

Sorry about your crash, and breaking that part of your aero bars. But I must confess, you made me laugh when I read it first. 
2009-05-19 7:56 AM
in reply to: #2159696

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Greenville, SC
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
Great job!!! Congrats on the hardware!
2009-05-19 9:56 AM
in reply to: #2159696

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Science Nerd
Redwood City, California
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
Great job!  Congratulations on the hardware!!

I'm especially impressed by the fast T1 time given that you say you felt like a drunk frat boy.  I know the feeling and it takes me a few minutes to focus and get everything together.
2009-05-19 11:15 AM
in reply to: #2159696

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West Chester, Ohio
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon

Congrats on hardware!!  Especially with that spill!!

2009-05-19 11:23 AM
in reply to: #2159696

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Las Vegas, NV
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
Great race!
2009-05-19 12:30 PM
in reply to: #2159696

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Brooklyn, NY
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
I know I shouldn't laugh, but seriously - funny report! Pretty impressive to place in the AG even with the crash and post-swim disorientation. I don't know how you got into 55 degree water on a 33 degree day! That's sick! Great race overall
2009-05-19 12:46 PM
in reply to: #2159696

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Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
Nice race, congrats
2009-05-19 1:48 PM
in reply to: #2159696

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Liverpool, New York
Gold member
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
All that and you still scored Hardware! 


2009-05-20 12:23 PM
in reply to: #2159696

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Hattiesburg, Mississippi
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon
All I could think of was "brrr" as I was reading your story! Congrats on the hardware and great race! After all that craziness you pushed through.  Your great sense of humor helped I bet!


2009-05-21 7:32 PM
in reply to: #2159696

Iron Donkey
, Wisconsin
Subject: RE: Land Between the Lakes Triathlon

The down"fall" of Disturbed - has a ring, don't it?

You were moving there!  Nice job, Neal.

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