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The Canadian - Sprint Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Ottawa, Ontario
Somersault Events
22C / 72F
Total Time = 1h 32m 49s
Overall Rank = 12/187
Age Group = M35-39
Age Group Rank = 4/17
Pre-race routine:

I was still not where I wanted to be weight wise and still had the annoying hip injury nagging away. Training in the lead up hadn't seemed too bad, but I was feeling particularly drained during the few days before the race...the taper didn't feel good at all ! Had the usual porridge oats/syrup breakfast at the crack of dawn and had a short 20 min drive to Mooneys Bay.
Glad we left as early as we did, there was a lot going on with so many different races being held, even when we arrived. My wife kept the kids entertained whilst I got the timing chip and took everything into the transition. Found a good spot in the transition, fairly near the bike exit and got everything set up. Was the biggest t-zone of the year, so made sure I knew where I was from each angle !
Spent a bit of time reviewing the ins/outs and course maps as there were a lot of pylons around for all the different races/distances and wanted to make sure I wasn't confused at any time !
Event warmup:

Took a gentle jog from transition to beach and then some swimming and stretching whilst chatting to the family. Watched some of the end of the Olympic distance swimmers finishing off whilst waiting to start.
  • 15m 17s
  • 750 meters
  • 02m 02s / 100 meters

500m run to transition +T1 included in time
I got an OK spot in the line up - was a bit apprehensive of the 90' left hand turn about 20m from the beach start...had visions of a mass of bodies all arriving there at the same time ! Decided I would really try and go for it to try and avoid the mayhem.
Got an OK start, but not great. Made it to the left turn in 2nd place. First 3/4 of swim was ok, but not great. Had very heavy arms and didn't feel the sighting was going well - felt like I was zig-zagging a bit too much. Was passed by another 3 swimmers.
The first bad part of the day happened as I was heading towards the finishing straight. I was alongside another swimmer as we rounded the turn to head towards the beach. My wife got to see all of this and validated exactly what I thought had happened, so I was relieved to know I hadn't been imagining it !! As the two of us had turned towards the beach, they were just about to start another wave. The swimmers in front of us had enough of a lead that it didn't affect them, but the guy beside me and myself weren't so lucky !
The problem was that they hadn't given enough consideration to the room needed for the way they were doing the start/finish of the swim (maybe it was different to last year ?). They had swimmers finishing and a wave starting, heading straight towards eachother !!!! So the guy beside me and I were met by a fairly aggressive kayaker who seemed ready to whack us over the head with his paddle. He told us to go round another buoy which effectively made us take an immediate 90' left and do a further 30-40m+ out and back before getting back on the original course !!
My wife said we were the only two swimmers she saw who had to make this detour. None before us had to and certainly the next few after us didn't have to as the next wave heading in the opposite direction had got out of the way, but after that she was obviously on the move so didn't see beyond them.
This detour got me pretty flustered (read pi$$ed off!) and my stroke went downhill at that point I think. Thankfully there wasn't much of the swim left as also in the confusion I must have dislodged my outer swim hat and I could feel it slipping off my head. When it finally popped off I chose to grab it and swim with it in my hand for the last probably 50m or so. Swimming with one hand in a fist with a swim hat in it really didn't feel efficient !!
Anyway, came out of the water just behind the other guy who got detoured. Was pretty much steaming and not very focused, the extra stress and energy expelled were not a welcome part of the swim ! Looking back the swim start/finish was not well organised at all....had they not thought about the fact that they could have swimmers heading towards eachother ?? Was the 'detour' their official contingency if waves were heading towards eachother or was that the kayaker thinking on the spot to avoid a potential disaster ?
Either way, not a good swim.
What would you do differently?:

Not sure about this one. Went out very quick to avoid the potential turn mayhem, but then maybe burnt myself out a little by not slowing the pace down after the turn. Consequently got passed by a few more people than I wanted in the second half of the swim. So, maybe be better at pacing myself, even if I did need to do a fast start....that would perhaps help the sighting too. for the kayaker and the detour....I have a few things I could do, most would probably have got me disqualified or hit on the head with a paddle, so I guess just be better at sucking it up and going with the flow !
Transition 1
  • 00m

Time included in swim time plus 500m run to transition.
Run from beach to T1 was ok. Got running shoes on quickly (had an old pair to use for all the sand and the stones on the pathway and grass - didn't want to risk a hole in the foot running to T1 !) and got the top half of the wetsuit removed ok.
Rest of wetsuit removal was ok and got bike off rack and going ok. Elastics and everything worked great on the shoes and got a great mount before the next problem of the day ! This one was totally my fault though....I had forgotten to unvelcro my tri-shoes when setting up ! Stupid move that one as I then had to figure out quickly the best way of getting them undone so I could actually get my feet in them.
Decided to get going for a bit with feet on top of shoes, then one foot at a time did a quick unvelcro (carefully trying not to unclip the shoe accidently!) and get the foot in. A bit further down the road I finally tightened both shoes up and got up to proper speed ! Bit of a bad start to the bike !
What would you do differently?:

Remember to unvelcro shoes !
  • 51m 15s
  • 30 kms
  • 35.12 km/hr

Bike leg was generally ok. I pushed myself hard to try and make up time from the swim debacle and my mistake on the bike shoes, which may have caused me problems in the run looking back. I was getting cramp in both calves by the end of first lap !
Was great to hear my wife and kids at the turnaround of the first lap. I wasn't sure if they would make it to the turnaround so that was a nice boost. Other than the cramping, tried hard to keep the pace up and had an ok dismount. Leg cramps were really bad on the run into T2...didn't bode well for the run !
What would you do differently?:

Again, make sure bike shoes are properly prepared for the start !
As for the cramping....not sure. Training was plentiful, maybe need to really push the training pace to recreate the cramping...if it is even the cause. Not sure if my water/electrolyte intake had been sufficient heading into the race and that could have caused it too....this one's a work in progress !
Transition 2
  • 02m 15s

This is where the third bad part of the day occurred :-( This isn't the first time it has happened this year and to be honest it is getting very annoying ! Not too sure what to do to prevent it either.
I had set myself up on the rack beside an upright and had kept my space usage to a minimum as I normally do. Another person had set up beside me and was in an appropriate place as I saw when I came in to T1. When I came in to T2, someone had decided to set up their bike with their wheel actually on my running shoe with their towel and running shoes neatly laid out overlapping mine ?!! Most of the space I had was gone and I had no room to put my bike on the rack ! WTF ?!?!
I didn't want to do the same to someone else on the other side of the upright so had to shuffle 2 bikes along to get enough room to fit mine in.
I ended up taking easily an extra 30 seconds in T2, putting me in 55th place overall and 10th in AG for the transition. Let's just say I wasn't happy. Not really sure how to avoid it happening again though - whoever put their bike where they did didn't seem to have a clue about what they were wasn't as though they had come in after the bike and mistakenly thought they were in the wrong place, it was someone who had actually set up their transition for the day all neatly, but on top of someone else's space to the extent they were actually on the other persons running shoe !!!
This didn't exactly put me in a great frame of mind for the run !
What would you do differently?:

Just looking at the timing results for T2, my time is waaay behind everyone else around me.....need to figure out a way of somehow protecting my rack space !
  • 24m 4s
  • 5 kms
  • 04m 49s  min/km

This run didn't feel good at all. It wasn't the worst I'd done this year, but that was on a really hot day in July. I did push hard on the bike and was cramping up badly in at least the first km. Thankfully I didn't have to walk or stop and the cramps did go away, but I certainly didn't feel like I ever got going properly.
Other than the bike, the other problems from the swim and T2 that were out of my control and my mistake on the bike shoes were bugging me and mentally making me loose the drive to push hard. I really need to just put that kind of thing out of my mind and just get on with the rest of the race and what I can control....there are going to be bad days !

To top off a great race (a little sarcasm there) I got passed on the finishing straight and had no legs to try and fight back.
What would you do differently?:

Push harder through the discomfort, put bad parts of a race out of my mind and just get on with it !
Post race
Warm down:

The usual banana/bagel sharing with the family and some stretching whilst watching some of the other races going on.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Hip was not great, weight still not good enough.
Then the factors out of my control:
- being re-routed on the swim when most others weren't
- having someone 'take' my transition space and having nowhere to rerack in T2

Event comments:

I think training was quantitatively enough, but may need to change type a little.
This event was the worst organised I had done. All the races I have done this year were with the same company, so it's not normal for it to be like it was on this day. I think they had tried to take on too much and were trying to fit too many races in to a single day with the number of people they had and the room they had to do it.
Having waves heading towards eachother in the swim was crazy. The transition was disorganised and there was no agreement between people as to where you should and should be entering/exiting for access and it seemed to change several times too. Not a major issue, but trying to co-ordinate where to meet my family several times was difficult when you got allowed in one way but then got sent out at the other end of an athletics track !
Sadly a bike was stolen at this race too, but on the positive side for everyone else it will hopefully improve the security around the transitions...although Ottawa isn't exactly crime central, it did seem rather relaxed on the security side of things ! Maybe it's because I'm British and expect the worst !?
Scheduling next season may mean I'll be doing an oly at this event next time...hopefully it'll be more organised and go better next time

Last updated: 2013-08-26 12:00 AM
00:15:17 | 750 meters | 02m 02s / 100meters
Age Group: 3/17
Overall: 7/187
Performance: Bad
Suit: Xterra Vortex 4
Course: Out from beach 90' left turn, then rectangle. Meant to then be right turn and between two buoys back to beach. Got rerouted round extra buoy by kayaker along with one other swimmer.
Start type: Run Plus: Waves
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Below average
Breathing: Average Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Average
Rounding: Average
Time: 00:00
Performance: Below average
Cap removal: Average Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Yes Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Bad
00:51:15 | 30 kms | 35.12 km/hr
Age Group: 4/17
Overall: 10/187
Performance: Average
Wind: Little
Course: 2 lap out and back on colonel by, alongside canal...nice bike route
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Average Hills: Average
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Not enough
Time: 02:15
Overall: Bad
Riding w/ feet on shoes Below average
Jumping off bike Average
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Bad
Shoe and helmet removal Average
00:24:04 | 05 kms | 04m 49s  min/km
Age Group: 9/17
Overall: 34/187
Performance: Bad
Course: Out and back along riverside and through park.
Keeping cool Below average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Below average
Mental exertion [1-5] 2
Physical exertion [1-5] 2
Good race? No
Course challenge Just right
Organized? No
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 2

2013-12-05 10:43 AM

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Subject: The Canadian - Sprint Triathlon
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2004-09-05 10:03 AM jnorminton
date : November 9, 2009
author : TexasHeatRunner
comments : 5
At mile ten I heard a noise like I had gotten paper in my spokes or something. I looked but saw nothing but a few seconds later my rear tire blows out.
date : June 3, 2009
author : Amy Kuitse
comments : 0
Are these races too close together to give me any sort of recovery? Will I be spent and unhappy racing back to back weekends and then again two weeks after that?
date : September 8, 2008
author : pjwalzphd
comments : 2
When I told my husband that I planned to work toward completing a sprint triathlon, he smiled and was supportive, but a bit disbelieving.
date : April 1, 2008
author : trvw
comments : 0
The challenge? The accomplishment? I want to do this because it is an opportunity to live life. The event is an indoor sprint triathlon. I get to experience the challenge on a safer scale.
date : February 12, 2008
author : mikericci
comments : 0
This plan is designed to make you go faster. 3 workouts per week in each sport, 2 days of strength training and core work. The maximum volume is around 10 hours toward the end of the 12 weeks.
date : September 3, 2006
author : acbadger
comments : 0
Since your “A” race is your marathon, which you stated in your question, this should be your main focus. I encourage you to taper a bit for the sprint distance triathlon.
date : October 2, 2005
author : DominiqueL
comments : 0
Yes, the Dual is a little heavier than Cervèlo’s high end counterparts. But…the price is within reach of the masses and it still incorporates all of the design features that make a Cervèlo special.
date : August 30, 2004
author : Ron
comments : 0
Couch-to-sprint triathlon training programs to get you over the finish-line of your first triathlon.