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Litchfield Hills Aquabike - Aquabike

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New Hartford, Connecticut
United States
Hartford Marathon Foundation
Total Time = 2h 16m 28s
Overall Rank = 14/22
Age Group = women
Age Group Rank = 5/11
Pre-race routine:

Trying to embrace the new reality of what I can do..swim and bike. Aquabikes offer tri experience for me.

Day before race I had some issues...
Put new 11-32 cassette on at home and had trouble getting it to tighten
At race site when trying to ride, hub won't turn right...thought it was the
aero jacket impinging on the hub which it was
Decided to take aero jacket of and in doing so cassette came off....tried
again finally took off spacer
While riding, Front Derailuer would shift well and I dropped my chain a few
times but was able to pop it back on riding, once it got stuck but I was
able to work it out
Going down one of the descents my Garmin 500 flew off mount, braked hard,
climbed back up hill, located it, kicked it out of street as car was coming
down, dinged up but it works
Event warmup:

At race when opened, had mechanic look at my FD which he adjusted so it was smooth
6:30 rode 10K run course including some unpaved road under construction
Porta Potty
Put on wetsuit and quick swim before announcements/race start
  • 42m 55s
  • 1620 yards
  • 02m 39s / 100 yards

After 3 years of feeling calm at all my tris, last sprint in Minnesota I had some anxious moments. Not sure it was the unrecovered body that was near our dock at the island for a few days, or what. Patriot HIM AB I did in June was first open water swim since IMFL and I was fine. Once I had issues, played in my head a bit last month. I did couple ows at the island without my wetsuit and felt better.

I wore my old wetsuit (which fit better) and didn't have any anxious

Caught a blue cap or two. This one guy I was with for about last 40%. He swam so crooked. He would sight realize he was off track then go off a different wrong way. Once he was swimming about 100 degrees off track actually going sideways and slightly backward. It was amusing to track his crazy progress.

I swam pretty straight only slightly off to the right which is my norm.

Kevin encouraged me to hurry over the timing mat as they had a 44' cut off and he knew it was close...I figured that out..he told me my time which I dislike knowing...I understood his encouragement to move a bit faster.

Swim time is what I earned with lack of consistent training.

In thinking about this swim vs. sprint and other swims. Sprints are usually more chaotic, with folks going fast, lots of waves and I'm overtaken by following waves. IMs and races I do ABs I'm either in last wave or only one way which means after short time only athletes near me are about my ability. With the sprint last month, I started more in the front, waves were close together, and I was passed by both folks in my wave and those in following waves.

What would you do differently?:

Train more consistently last 4 months

It's been an interesting hiccup in my life not being able to run and observing how I've dealt with it. Some ways have been good...others like eating clean not so good. I am a stress eater.

Pleased I felt comfortable swimming. I did think about the body in the water at Cass Lake but didn't effect me.
Transition 1
  • 07m 24s

2/10 mile gravel road/path to transition with much of it up hill. My knee doesn't like running or hills or uneven terrain so I choose to walk to transition. I could have run but the 3-4 weeks of pain and swelling really itsn't worth saving 2 minutes

Took my wetsuit off at top of beach and put on my crocs. Kevin walked with me up towards transition. I said to the volunteer easy to pick out my bike and more bikes to chase down.

Quick in transition and long walk to road to cross mount and off I go.
What would you do differently?:

Have a good knee
  • 1h 26m 11s
  • 24.8 miles
  • 17.27 mile/hr

Bike I missed starting my Garmin so time/distance is short. I found easy
to push watts well, on the slight down hill on 44 with nice wide smooth shoulder while racing, Guessing I would have thought my vi was higher than it was at 1.05. I did first 40' and second 40' and my power was slightly higher second half by about 4 watts. This was probably one of the more challenging hill courses I've done...similar to Mooseman and tough as the climbs are all at the end.

I think I rode most of the miles/time in either 50-11 or 34-32. Glad I swapped out cassette on my Zipps as hills were steep at times. Passed lots and lots of men and women...usually going much faster than they were...even up hills. Knee was talking a little on certain parts of the course but not for long, so thought it okay to keep on going hard.

Funny how pushing hard on the bike, I tolerate the discomfort of that zone 4 effort better than swimming or running. Bike time seemed shorter to me than swim perception wise which probably reflect my passion for cycling.

Downhill portions of race were a blast..hit 50.8 mph. I love a slight down hill as my RPE for power is lower than climbing hills.

4th women of the ABers not bad for racing at 50, bum knee and above my ideal weight on hilly course
What would you do differently?:

Goal was higher watts, but about 11 watts lower than sprint I did month ago that took 33' so overall content. VI was good, watts went up and not down which indicates pacing was what I had in me that day.

Based on riding and driving the course the day before I was faster than I expected I would be...always a plus.
Post race
Warm down:

Crossed the finish line and volunteer was there checking off ABers to make sure we turned in our chips. He said thanks Kathy for turning that in as I put it in the bucket...pretty darn organized. We didn't get medals that the tri finishers did. Not that I care but I bet some of the ABers it was a big step/race for them.

One thing I struggle with at this race and Patriot that spectators yell at me when I walk, encouraging me it is only xx far or I can do it. Yes I can do it, fitness is not the issue but physical limitation. It's tough on my pride to walk the finish chute or end of the race. I know it is smart so I can continue to bike and swim. I don't want to keep my knee as long as possible. If I am forced to get knee replacement long distance cycling may not be I walk.

Last few races I haven't been motivated to write a RR as I've felt more like a participant than a racer (racing against myself). Accepting my current self, abilities, limitations, and being happy that I can participate and my race goals can be adjusted. Being excited to be involved even if I'm slower than my old self, is important as it may be the new reality. I still hope to make some swim and bike gains....time will tell. Posting a race report is a step into accepting the new reality.

Not running in a race, makes recovery faster. I was less sore than Kevin was running a training 10K.

Enjoyed being out there racing in a tri environment. The excitment and vibe

This race was a step into I'll be USAT ranked, and even started daydreaming about which ABs I want to do next year as I feel a bit more excited than in the past where I viewed ABs as not exciting, cool as tri and disappointing option. Oly distance AB are interesting as the bike length is such that effort level can be higher but relative swim is higher percentage of time than HIM AB.

Saw Kevin as I was packing up as he ran the 10K route while I was on bike

ART on both knees

Chocolate milk and bagel from post race food

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Lack of consistent training especially on swim

Knee issue

Event comments:

Very well organized; nice tech t-shirts; great bike tech; good post race food, announcer was good

Long distance between swim and bike out makes it challenging for those who don't run or walk well

Last updated: 2011-07-16 12:00 AM
00:42:55 | 1620 yards | 02m 39s / 100yards
Age Group: 9/11
Overall: 20/22
Performance: Average
Suit: ProMotion Full
Course: Triangle
Start type: Wade Plus:
Water temp: 77F / 25C Current: Low
200M Perf. Remainder:
Breathing: Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 07:24
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Below average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
01:26:11 | 24.8 miles | 17.27 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/11
Overall: 0/22
Performance: Average
Course: It was a tough course, lots of hills, rolling, crappy roads for first ~4.5 miles, then sweet ~10 slightly downhill with a couple of small rollers; last 11 miles were mostly uphill with final 2 some 10-15% grade hills NP 159?; VI 1.05
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? No
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2011-08-22 10:00 PM

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Subject: Litchfield Hills Aquabike

2011-08-23 5:58 AM
in reply to: #3654724

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Nutmeg State
Subject: RE: Litchfield Hills Aquabike
Nice job Kathy.  Litchfield is a tough bike course and you flew.  You'll have to do Mossman next year, flat, tight course with lots of fun corners. 
2011-08-23 7:53 AM
in reply to: #3654724

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Subject: RE: Litchfield Hills Aquabike
Great job Kathy.  Nice report.  Over the years I have seen many positive and uplifting posts of yours.  Sounds like you have/are overcoming a lot.  Good luck in the future and I hope to toe the swim/bike line with you at races in the future.  
2011-08-23 4:32 PM
in reply to: #3654724

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, North Carolina
Subject: RE: Litchfield Hills Aquabike

Great job on the race.  It's encouraging to see your positive attitude as you've turned stumbling blocks into new opportunities.  You continue to be a shining example for all of us.


2011-08-23 7:19 PM
in reply to: #3654724

Subject: ...
This user's post has been ignored.
2011-08-23 8:30 PM
in reply to: #3654724

Williamston, Michigan
Subject: RE: Litchfield Hills Aquabike
YAY YOU!! Congrats.  I'm so glad you had fun Way to go on pushing the bike. Really no reason ot to without that pesky run.

After patriot once my mom said "You should do that aquabike thing cause you suck at running"  thanks mom.

2011-08-24 5:04 AM
in reply to: #3654724

Subject: RE: Litchfield Hills Aquabike
Nice job Kathy!
2011-08-24 4:26 PM
in reply to: #3654724

West Chester, Ohio
Subject: RE: Litchfield Hills Aquabike

Awesome job out there.  Working with limitations is a hard thing, you are doing great with this.

2011-08-24 5:57 PM
in reply to: #3654724

Subject: RE: Litchfield Hills Aquabike

Great race, very encouraging to see you staying with it and hammering even with the hand (knee) you've been dealt.

Did you say unrecovered body????

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