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Gear West Duathlon - Duathlon

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Orono, Minnesota
United States
Gear West
68F / 20C
Total Time = 1h 36m 34s
Overall Rank = 88/249
Age Group = M35-39
Age Group Rank = 14/31
Pre-race routine:

Soooo... bad idea to schedule a race on my birthday weekend. I was thinking that since my actual birthday was on Friday, that Friday would be when we would cut loose and have people over. My wife, God bless her, had other ideas. At least I had a great night's rest on Friday, which is supposedly more important than the night before a race. Right?
Saturday we had 15 of our close friends and neighbors over for appetizers (I ate like complete crap) and cocktails. Thankfully I took it really easy on the booze, and mixed in a lot of water. The weather was looking very threatening, and I wasn't going to race in a thunderstorm. I finally went to bed around 2 thinking that I would probably bail if the line of storms rolled in around 8. As luck would have it, when my alarm went off at 6, I heard thunder. woohoo! Race day was on!
Event warmup:

I didn't want the bike to get soaked (in the storm at least) so I sat in my car until 7:30. I made my third poop stop of the morning (started juicing 2 days ago, my colon is reacting angrily). The race start was delayed 15 minutes, which gave me just enough time to take the bike for a spin. No run warm up for me, which probably would have been helpful.
  • 24m 2s
  • 2.8 miles
  • 06m 59s  min/mile

Started out really fast on the pavement (6:30 range) which I can hold for all of about 4 minutes. It took a while for my heartrate to climb to where it belonged. Once it hit the 170s, it stayed there. The course was very soft, and very muddy, especially in the orchard and on the trails through the woods (despite the woodchips). Once people settled into their pace, I pretty much didn't move. I exchanged position with one or two people, and passed a few of the relayers who started with the elites. Otherwise, I just wanted to hold my own
What would you do differently?:

Try warming up? Oh, and maybe practice running during the winter. That might be helpful, too. I'm hoping that the poor conditions account for a 20% increase in everyones expected times.
Transition 1
  • 01m 11s

This was a really good transition time, but I paid for it in the first mile of the bike. Did pretty well hustling through transition, shoes off, helmet on at the same time, and running with the bike. I've only practiced getting into my shoes on the new bike 2-3 times, and it showed. With wet feet (and forgetting to open them up prior to the race to make it easier), it took me almost until Homestead before I had both feet in and strapped. I was passed by maybe 5-6 people just trying to get my shoes on, but I passed them all back in the first mile once I was strapped in
What would you do differently?:

Consider parking the bike right at bike out and running with shoes on. I've never been very good at getting the shoes on on the bike, and I'm usually on the verge of cramping with the contortioning I have to do. Whenever it's an option, I need to get close to the bike out and just put the shoes on in transition
  • 45m 6s
  • 16.6 miles
  • 22.08 mile/hr

Good, if not great bike for me. While the course was slightly shorter due to moving transition to the North one parking lot (maybe a few hundred yards total), I improved by 4 minutes from last year! I read last year's race report just before I started, so I didn't want to completely hammer the bike and then really struggle on the run. Given my relative placement on the first run compared to the bike, I obviously passed a lot of people. I was passed by only 4 or 5 guys, and only one on a road bike. As a side note, I absolutely love my new Flo wheels. I'm running Flo 60s front and back, with a Wheelbuilder disc cover for the rear. It was a little breezy with sustained 10mph winds out of the Southeast. I felt like these held the line better than even my training wheels, particularly when I was driving a little harder. Very stable, and I'm very impressed.
What would you do differently?:

As noted above, I need to do a better job of getting into my shoes. A great transition time doesn't matter if I cost myself 20 seconds on the first mile of the bike.
Transition 2
  • 00m 42s

really couldn't have gone better. 32nd fastest overall
What would you do differently?:

  • 25m 34s
  • 2.8 miles
  • 06m 34s  min/mile

Well, I guess I still didn't take it easy enough on the bike. Calves were very tight, ready to cramp out of transition. I stopped for probably 15 seconds to stretch them in the first stretch along the road. I was passed by many. From there, I pushed as hard as I could without actually causing them to lock up. There was a guy who was pacing at exactly my pace for much of the run (I was passed by many others early in the run, but it generally tapered off in the last mile or so). This guy pulled ahead by as much as 50 or 60 yards in the first 1.5 miles. However, once we got back in the woods I started gaining ground, and I made a good push to catch him with 3/4 mile to go. I pulled ahead and as I rounded the last corner (150 yards) I didn't see him. I should have looked over the other shoulder. He caught me with about 30 yards to go, and finished 1 second ahead. Bummer.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing really. I think this was an issue of fitness rather than anything else. The cramping and the slow pace can be explained by my general lack of fitness and lack of training with the run. I think I can still hope to break 2:25 for my oly's this summer given the improvements in the bike, but I'll have to keep up the run training this summer.
Post race
Warm down:

I jogged lightly for about 2 minutes, stretched, then found the hot dog stand. I really enjoyed chatting with Steve, Pete, and Eric.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Clearly, run performance here is mainly limited by my lack of training the run over the winter. Maybe by LTF in July I'll be back in last summer's shape, but it may take until Maple Grove. The bar has been officially lowered for Buffalo

Event comments:

Definitely a great race, very well organized, and attracts some of the best local talent. The cross country-style run is very challenging for me (almost too hard), but I know the bike course well given that this is my stomping grounds. I'll have to be more cognizant of birthday planning next year before I sign up.

Last updated: 2013-01-31 12:00 AM
00:24:02 | 02.8 miles | 06m 59s  min/mile
Age Group: 20/31
Overall: 126/249
Performance: Average
7:17 167; 8:05 174; 8:35 176; Garmin had it at almost exactly 3 miles
Course: Winding course through soaked playing fields and muddy trails of Orono High School and Middle School
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Time: 01:11
Overall: Below average
Run with bike? Good
Jump on bike? Below average
Getting up to speed and into shoes: Bad
00:45:06 | 16.6 miles | 22.08 mile/hr
Age Group: 10/31
Overall: 48/249
Performance: Good
Averaged probably 164 overall. Started out around 169, got settled in around 166, then a few lower splits later in the ride as I prepared for the run
Wind: Some
Course: Rolling course through Medina- Cty 6, Homestead Trl, Cty 24 West, Cty 19, Cty 115, Willow, Cty 24 East, Hunter, then Cty 6 back to Old Crystal Bay Rd
Road: Smooth Wet Cadence: 82
Turns: Good Cornering: Below average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable 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
00:25:34 | 02.8 miles | 06m 34s  min/mile
Age Group: 22/31
Overall: 123/249
Performance: Below average
8:32 161; 8:38 167; 8:24 174. Garmin had this at 2.98
Course: Same as first
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Ok
Course challenge Too hard
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2013-05-20 1:55 PM

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Maple Grove
Subject: Gear West Duathlon

2013-05-20 4:38 PM
in reply to: #4750172

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Minneapolis, MN
Subject: RE: Gear West Duathlon
Happy birthday. So glad the rain stopped. Awesome bike split. See you at buffalo
2013-05-23 2:41 PM
in reply to: #4750172

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, Minnesota
Gold member
Subject: RE: Gear West Duathlon
I think you did great! Running that speed in those conditions is awesome. I am excited for you this season.
2013-06-12 9:20 AM
in reply to: #4750172

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Extreme Veteran
Rochester, MN
Subject: RE: Gear West Duathlon
Nice job with the less than perfect pre-race activities. Some year I will have to try this race.
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