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Cultus Lake Triathlon - Olympic Course - TriathlonOlympic

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Cultus Lake, British Columbia
Outback Events
Total Time = 3h 12m 17s
Overall Rank = 137/148
Age Group = M60-64
Age Group Rank = 4/4
Pre-race routine:

Camping in a tent - slept GREAT!! and up by alarm at 4:45am. Ate a bagel with peanut butter. I should have eaten a bit more as I felt some hunger later in the day.
Friend and I drove a few kilometres to the race site arriving just before 6:00am and we got our transition set up.
Event warmup:

I didn't do any kind of warm up before the race. We wandered around waiting for the time to pass until it was time to get our wetsuits on. About 7:30am we started getting our wetsuits on and walking down to the beach and we waded into the water waiting for the start.
We found ourselves standing behind a young couple holding hands so we teased them a bit in the last few seconds before our start.
  • 32m 3s
  • 1500 meters
  • 02m 08s / 100 meters

This race was combined with a Sprint race and they had a two-wave start for the Sprinters then a single start for the 148 Oly people. We watched the Sprinters go - Men first then a few minutes later the ladies started. In the first 200m we could see some swimmers clearly struggling and I felt bad for them.

Once the Sprinters were around the 1st buoy they set us off at 8:10am and we started off. 148 people isn't a lot in a wave but we had a narrow start area between two docks and so there was a bit of a crush. It looked and sounded like a lot of piranha in the water but once I got into the water I was able to manoeuvre amongst the other swimmers fairly easily. My first 200m were slower than normal but not too bad.
When I reached the first buoy everyone else arrived at the same time (or so it seemed). It was so packed I was barely more than treading water but I guess the current just carried me around the buoy and immediately after the buoy the pack spread out and I found myself in an open area with everyone either behind me or well ahead of me so I just settled in to the swim. I felt really comfortable and really seemed to pick up speed. I was soon passing other swimmers and I even tried to draught off a few feet but I couldn't find anyone fast enough. So I just moved around them and carried on.
As I turned the second buoy I recognized some struggling Sprinters now surrounded by fast swimmers. I wanted to shout encouragement to them but it wasn't possible so I just kept going.
I was enjoying the swim and finished my 1st loop and headed around for the second loop. Rounding the 1st buoy was much easier and faster as we were more spread out by now and I was still passing lots of people. The last 500m went by really fast and as I'm approaching the shore I'm considering how best to exit the water. The lake bottom at the exit is very uncomfortable and slippery stones so everyone was staggering and really slow on the exit. As I got to the shallows I decided to breaststroke further in and it worked quite well then as I stood up I found some stable footing and beside me a woman was struggling unable to get up on her feet so I reached out my right hand and she took it and we exited the lake holding hands (of course my wife and her friend were right there taking pictures). As we walked up thee mats to transition someone told a person behind us that we were just at 31 minutes. Getting to the timing mat took a few seconds so I got a 32:03.

I entered transition having completely forgotten the lady I walked out of the lake with and feeling great. I do love the swim.
What would you do differently?:

I'd like to avoid the crush of people at the buoys but otherwise I just like swimming.
Transition 1
  • 04m 58s

I thought I was pretty fast getting my wetsuit off but I wasted a lot of time putting my socks on. Everything else went fast and I got headed out of transition looking for the mount line. I got a bit off track and missed the timing mat so I had to run back 20' then run over the mat and then carry on.
What would you do differently?:

I need to work on my transitions and speed them up at least some. Plus, catch the timing mats the first time through.
  • 1h 20m 54s
  • 40 kms
  • 29.67 km/hr

According to my bike computer the route was only 35.8km so short by almost 5km. I can't believe they would measure short by this much but I can't believe my computer would be that far out. The day before the race we drove the bike route and my speedometer said the course was short as well. I'll have to check the computer against a known distance.

I felt good getting onto the bike and heading out. We were riding through beautiful countryside. The route was fast and I was having a great time passing some people and being passed by others. There was a fair bit of good natured banter going on amongst the cyclists encouraging each other. Just a great time.
I did find my saddle was uncomfortable unreasonably quickly and given problems over the last month I decided this saddle has to go. In two years of cycling I've never been completely comfortable on any saddle but I'm going to get it fixed!
About 18km into the ride I passed a fellow on a mountain bike with fenders and he was doing quite well so I cheered him on and he said he has to get a road bike. I told him it would make a big difference but he was doing great so just keep going. Then I carried on.
As I neared the last few kilometres I came to the one main hill of the course. A short 20% grade then a steady uphill for about 500m or so then some fast downhill back to the dismount line.
I realized I could make 1:20:00 if I pushed harder and I managed to finish just under 1:21.
I came up to the dismount line and easily got off the bike and headed to the transition at as fast a pace as I could.
What would you do differently?:

My bike computer says my average cadence was only 60rpm. I felt I was spinning faster than that and I didn't think I was doing a lot of coasting even at the one best downhill leg when I kept spinning the whole way to the bottom but I want to get that average up to 90rpm.
Transition 2
  • 03m 14s

The slowest part of my transition was getting my gloves off. Otherwise I changed and got on my feet and out of transition. I chugged some water/perpetuem and grabbed a Honey Stinger chews to eat gradually on the run.
As I left the transition I was alone and my wife caught me and took more pictures as I ran down to the lake. Maybe I'll get to see them someday.
What would you do differently?:

New gloves. Practice transitions and learn how to smile for the camera.
  • 1h 11m 9s
  • 10 kms
  • 07m 07s  min/km

I'm not a runner but today I was determined that I was going to push myself and see what I could do. Out of the transition I started running right away and I was pleased to see my wife cheering me on. She's really enthusiastic and supportive.

I then came out of the beach area where we had come out of the lake and came to the shoreline path we were running on. I'm usually really bad at running off the bike but today I was running like I hadn't been on the bike at all (still slow but pretty amazing for me).
I really amazed myself running along the beach and feeling pretty good. I only stopped at the AID station for a cup of water. Then I ran all the way to the turn around and I ran back to the AID station where I stopped again for some Gatorade then headed on the short out and back through some streets with rustic cottages. People all along the route were cheering us on and at one point I passed the couple that had been holding hands in the water at the start of the day. I waved to them and cheered them on. I saw them again 3 more times but on the last time they took off past me and sprinted the last kilometre to the finish.
The whole time I was running I kept chanting to myself 6:45/6:45/6:45 over and over. I was trying to get myself to keep up my pace and keep running. Other than at the AID stations I only walked very briefly and I kept running for the whole 10K. On my way out on the second loop my right knee started acting up. I had injured it 2 weeks ago at Challenge Penticton and this was exactly the same.
I amazed myself and continued to run. In the last 3km I just kept running. I had no idea what my time was but I kept pushing to keep my pace as fast as I could. Then I came around the corner with a clear view to the finish line about 500m away. I couldn't sprint but I kept going. My friend cheered me on at about 400m which got some area residents cheering me on by name (pretty cool). At about 100m my wife ran a bit beside me cheering me on but as I turned the last corner to about 50m to the final timing mat I could see the time and if I pushed I would beat 3:20 my "hoped for" goal. So I did sprint to the finish that last 50m or so.
Later I found out the time I saw was from 8:00am and we had started after that so my time was about 8 minutes faster than I had thought. Yahoo!!
What would you do differently?:

This run was good for me but I am certain I can do better. I'll work at getting stronger on the run.

My Garmin wasn't functioning properly so I couldn't keep track of my pace. I didn't care about any other info on the Garmin. I just wanted the pace but couldn't get it. I think I could've done some better if I had known what my actual pace was on the run.
Post race
Warm down:

I felt really good at the finish line. Turned in my chip then went and got some pizza and water. I was hungry so the pizza was really good. I only wish I had gone back for a couple more pieces.

I got comfortable in a chair and we started swapping stories between my wife, my friend and his girlfriend. Then they told me about the girl I helped out of the water. It turns out my friends girlfriend was looking for her friend (an Ironman) who was also in the race and as she was watching me come out of the water and taking pictures of me she realized that I was helping her friend out of the water. Just one of those really neat coincidences. A little later the lady came up and thanked me for helping her.
I also met the couple who had been holding hands before the swim and I high-fived them. They seemed like a really neat couple.
About 30 minutes after I finished they announced the last two athletes (a man and a woman) were approaching the finish. I immediately headed towards the finish line to cheer them in and I was proud to see my wife one of the first ones out ahead of me and getting ready to cheer them in. I was also amazed to see that virtually everyone there was heading out to do the same thing.

The couple were still a few hundred metres out and walking slowly but everyone started cheering and they started running to the finish and they were mobbed into the finish line. I was proud of my wife for her enthusiasm but I was really thrilled by all the athletes. What a great group of people we compete with (well, I play and they compete).

Then they started the awards. After all the Sprinters were called up they started on the Oly people and when they got to the males 60 - 64. I was called up for a 3rd place finish. The one advantage to age is there aren't very many of us. The race website shows me as 4th of 4 but they called me up as 3rd so I guess I beat one guy.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I need to work on my endurance and my bike and run fitness. I might be able to squeak out a minute or two on the swim but I can really make gains if I can bike and run faster.

This race was a really fun final race of the season. I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for a September Oly.

Event comments:

The race was a lot of fun and well organized for a fun event. The only shortcoming was a shortage of volunteers. The volunteers that they had were great and did all they could to help us.

Last updated: 2013-09-09 12:00 AM
00:32:03 | 1500 meters | 02m 08s / 100meters
Age Group: 0/4
Overall: 0/148
Performance: Good
Suit: Blue-Seventy
Course: The course is an "L" shaped two loop course in a clockwise direction.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 22C / 72F Current: Low
200M Perf. Below average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Good Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 04:58
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Below average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Average
01:20:54 | 40 kms | 29.67 km/hr
Age Group: 0/4
Overall: 0/148
Performance: Average
Wind: Little
Course: A fairly flat course with only a couple worrisome intersections and one longish climb near the end of the ride. Nothing too hard and a nice route weaving through a rural community.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 60
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 03:14
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Average
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Average
01:11:09 | 10 kms | 07m 07s  min/km
Age Group: 0/4
Overall: 0/148
Performance: Good
Course: This is a beautiful run course along the Cultus Lake shoreline. A double loop so you're constantly passing people and cheering each other on.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? No
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2013-09-10 12:03 AM

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Extreme Veteran
Penticton, BC
Subject: Cultus Lake Triathlon - Olympic Course

2013-09-10 8:29 AM
in reply to: #4851484

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Cultus Lake Triathlon - Olympic Course
What a fantastic job! 3:12 is awesome! And it sounds like an all-around wonderful day. You are such a gentleman. Smile I hope to be able to run a 10k that fast in a tri... gotta keep working.
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