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Galena Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Galena, Illinois
United States
Galena/Jo Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau
Total Time = 1h 31m 3s
Overall Rank = 38/674
Age Group = M0-34
Age Group Rank = 13/102
Pre-race routine:

Checked out the swim and drove the bike course the night before. Logistics are a challenge with this course in the two transitions and the area is rather remote and hilly, so roads go all over and aren't necessarily taken care of. Several times I was on gravel roads getting there. One was two tire tracks with grass growing up the middle. I went around that one. The race seems to do ok with handling this for what is possible to do, it's just more to think of with two instead of one.

I woke up before the alarm and felt a bit sick. Not what exactly what I wanted. It felt more like bad food than sickness though. Got up, got ready and went to the course. Thought I'd just lower expectations and go at a solid effort instead of trying to scream through it. This would still be a good workout and a nice way to get race experience again. I haven't raced since early fall, and haven't had a tri with a swim since July.
Event warmup:

Got all my stuff to the right areas. Except for the waterbottle which I left back at the hotel (whoops). No big deal in a sprint. Only issue is that it's the aero bottle for the frame. Not expensive, but can't just fit anything in there.

Feeling a bit better, but still didn't have loads of energy like I was expecting. Just not sore or tired. Put on the wetsuit and went swimming to warm-up. The lake smelled awful. Seemed like lots of gas or motor oil from boats in there. It was hard to keep my face down. Hoping to get through the swim without throwing up.
  • 10m 53s
  • 660 yards
  • 01m 39s / 100 yards

I went in at the end. I'd felt rocks in the water, and my feet seem to be especially sensitive to them. Not sure why. Guys tend to go hard running into the water, so I took my time staying out of the way. Just walked it in. Swam as best I could, managing my way through people.

Not sure I should stick with the full-suit. I've tried several now, and my form is always off. My reach is always compromised as I can't extend out as far. I did better this time, but it was inconsistent. Shoulders started to feel it a little on this short of a swim. What happens in a HIM swim?

The distance to transition is fine, it's fairly close to the beach, but I really hate timing mats that aren't at the swim exit. Running to transition isn't swimming. It's transition even though we're not in the designated fenced area. I don't see the difference between that running and once we get inside the fence. I was actually more like 10 minutes in the water. Not great, but better than near 11. I did struggle a LOT with the rocks there. Had to step carefully. Really should have put my morning shoes out somewhere along the way.
Transition 1
  • 04m 36s

Took my time at this transition. Walking took for-ev-er to get to the bike. Made sure I put everything into the bag as I didn't want to lose anything or have to come back after the race. I didn't care about placing, so it wasn't a big deal. Do kind of wish it wasn't SO slow as that's rather embarrassing. I know I can easily be more competitive if I need to.
  • 44m 31s
  • 16.8 miles
  • 22.64 mile/hr

The bike course on this race is a bit challenging. And it doesn't waste a second. Right after the mount line (RIGHT after the mount line) is a nice steep hill to get out of transition. Maybe a hundred yards long, I missed the grade, but it's a bottom gear one. I took off just going with what I felt. I knew what I wanted to do for power, but didn't see it happening with how I felt. Rode to have fun and work on negotiating this terrain as I have some hilly races planned, but I don't live in a hilly area.

From driving the course, I decided to leave the gearing as-is. This meant 54/42 up front and 11-23 in the back. I wanted to push myself and thought I could do ok with this. Turns out I did just fine with that, even with the lessened effort.

The first 5 miles or so of the course have a lot of fast ups and downs. This course, and this area especially, shows why even though a triathlon bike is like a moderately paced time trial, it's still beneficial to be able to hit the power hard. I just FLEW past people in this area. So many had no idea someone would be coming. I had so much momentum and carried it so far up the hills that I didn't have that much climbing to do. These ones were short enough that it paid off to put effort into the downhills. It also helped being able to spin well at a variety of cadences, instead of the +/- a few that most tend to stick with. I went after the turns as much as I felt safe doing so. I've done ok in the past, but think I could do more. Still have to watch out for everyone else.

I was worried about course congestion, but they did a nice job with sizing and spacing the waves that this really wasn't an issue. Road closures helped to give us more room as well.

A few miles of decent speed hills, and then we turned to get to the big climb. I'd felt the wind acting on those few miles, but wasn't sure how much there was. At the turn, I found it was certainly noticeable, but not overwhelming (certainly can't complain after seeing St George!). Got the hill and just ground it out. Knew I would get up, but wasn't sure how much it would take out of me with the gear selection. I usually ride in the 80's, and this was ~75 or so. I do that all the time on hills, so it was fine. Just past half-way now.

After the ascent was a lot of small terrain variations for a few miles, then we had predominantly downhill for the last few miles. This section was FAST. Lots of areas to keep speed up near 30 or over for more than a few seconds. I knew the biggest hill with the caution and long s-curves would be fast, so I stayed on the drops and ducked way down. My base bar has dropped handles instead of being flat, so I can stay lower more easily. I wound up hitting 47.4 on this thing. Exited the woods and out into the subdivision in the mid 30's and held that for awhile.

The last hill is a down & up with a sweep over the entire thing. Easy enough, but I actually had the speed wobble come in on this. Never had that before, but put my knees on the top tube and let it sort itself out. I was on the base bar and did not brake. Able to stay up, and good thing. Would have been bad for me and 3-5 runners on the other side of the road. T2 was right after the uphill.

I guess I did alright on this one. Best bike split was ~90 seconds faster than mine. A number of guys ahead of me (here and in the overall) are 2:05 Oly or better capable, so can't really complain. I wasn't even close on power goals with a 274 ave and 289 NP. I should be hitting 30-40 watts higher than that for this. I did 296/306 for ~90 min a few days ago and ran fine after. Got a few ideas of what I can do for training to help this. Also have to remember I wasn't feeling as well as normal.
Transition 2
  • 01m 45s

In and out, but still a bit pokey.
  • 29m 20s
  • 4.3 miles
  • 06m 49s  min/mile

It's easy to overlook the run, but with this one it's noticeably longer than the normal 5k or so for a sprint. It's also much hillier, so it's at your own peril. The run starts off with a sizeable downhill, the very last one we came up on the bike, in fact. This may sound nice, but it's steep and we're maybe 200 yds into the run off a hilly bike. Garmin was taking forever to load, so I don't have data on the hill. Only from the bottom, but did see ~5:17 pacing there. Then the next half mile is up, way up. Almost 200 ft up from the looks of the graph.

I was just running whatever I felt like. Moving along, but short of being out of breath. Could have had somewhat of a conversation at any time. I had decided before to not push the run. Was looking for faster than this, but didn't want to push with the way I had been feeling today.

The rest of the course after the hills was a series of continuous rollers. One into the next, no flat spots. These were noticeably less than the first one though, as I ended up with 345 ft ascending. On this length run, that's not bad at all.

The run pace seems much quicker than what Garmin had. Don't think I ever had a mile break 7, actually. Maybe the late start (as in I was already running) and new area threw it off? Would like to know if it's as long as they list it as.
Post race
Warm down:

Stretched, ate a little, and laid down in the shade. Just waited until I could go into T2 and also for the T1 stuff to get there.

Event comments:

I really like this course, but the remoteness and logistical challenges will have me think about doing it again. It really takes up a lot of time for a sprint. But it's one of a very few options at this time of year for the area. I probably will eventually, as I'd like to be able to really get after it some time.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2012-05-19 12:00 AM
00:10:53 | 660 yards | 01m 39s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/102
Overall: 0/674
Suit: Xterra Vector Pro full-sleeve
Course: The swim is a beach start in small waves, going off every 3 minutes. The course is L-shaped. Easy to follow with the buoys.
Start type: Plus:
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current:
200M Perf. Remainder:
Breathing: Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 04:36
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
00:44:31 | 16.8 miles | 22.64 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/102
Overall: 0/674
Course: The bike course is what really draws to this event. Yes, it's Illinois, but the hills are big enough for a ski hill somewhat nearby. Lots of rolling hills, as in they roll one into another, carrying speed. 1 big climb, about a mile where it's work. A bit more at a low grade. 1,063 ft of ascending per Garmin Edge 800. Not too bad for a sprint.
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 01:45
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
00:29:20 | 04.3 miles | 06m 49s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/102
Overall: 0/674
Course: Hilly loop.
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]

2012-05-19 6:50 PM

Northern IL
Subject: Galena Triathlon

2012-05-19 6:54 PM
in reply to: #4218480

Northern IL
Subject: RE: Galena Triathlon
Right-click\ Open Picture in New Tab\Window seems to make them nice size. At least when I try it.
2012-05-22 2:57 PM
in reply to: #4218480

User image

Southern Chicago Suburbs, IL
Subject: RE: Galena Triathlon

Smoking fast time!  Nicely done.

2012-05-22 10:14 PM
in reply to: #4218480

Northern IL
Subject: RE: Galena Triathlon
Thanks! Hopefully I can run into some of you guys at one of the other events around here.
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