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Church Creek Time Trial #1 - Cycle

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Church Creek, Maryland
United States
88F / 31C
Total Time = 1h 10m 11s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group = Cat 5 Men's
Age Group Rank = 26/29
Pre-race routine:

This is my first adventure into cycling-only races. I got my USAC license a few weeks ago and trained for this using Trainer Road's sustained power training plan plus some outdoor rides. I was a little behind where I wanted to be but felt that I could put together about a 1:07 or so given my cycling splits in triathlons and being able to hammer to the end rather than having a pesky run at the end.

I didn't start until 10:45 so we drove down to Cambridge that morning and set up shop.

Riding my Fuji roadie with clip-ons, 12/23 cassette.
Event warmup:

The parking for the race was about 5-6 miles away which made for a good warmup, about 20-22 minutes of increasing intensity up to theshold for about 3 minutes, and then a couple of sprints. Stretched a little and got razzed by the RD for my number flapping too much.
  • 1h 10m 11s
  • 40 kms
  • 34.20 km/hr

The Plan was to go easy the first 5 miles and then increase intensity through to the end. At the start my HR was a little high but I settled in to high zone 3 pretty quickly (no power meter). The first 5 miles were into a pretty strong headwind so I had trouble maintaining even 20 mph. Once we hit mile 5 I upped the effort a little without much success given the wind intensity, which started to swirl a little. 10 miles in I felt pretty good but a little mentally beaten down by that wind, but my average speed starts increasing...still hoping for 1:07ish.

Miles 10-15 were great...nice tailwind or at worst rear-quartering wind, felt great, HR climbing through zone 4. I passed a couple of similarly-outfitted guys and got blown away by some really nice rides. Those aero profiles would really help in this wind.

Miles 15-20 should have still been a tailwind but clearly the wind had shifted and I started to struggle to hold 24 mph, HR spiking and I'm getting frustrated by this damn wind. Suck it up buttercup.

The last 5 miles were hell. My legs were cooked and I couldn't hold power in the aero position, but when I went to the hoods I was like a big sail in the wind. There was one point I looked at my Garmin where I was in Z5 for my HR and doing 16.5 mph being bounced all over the place. I recovered a bit the final mile and finished just over 1:10. For reference I did a similar course last year during an OLY in 1:12.
What would you do differently?:

Race strategy was executed perfectly, just the wind and my mental handling of it did me in. Oh, and it wouldn't hurt to train a bit more and lose 10 pounds. And get a TT bike. :-)
Post race
Warm down:

Reverse of WU, rode back to the parking lot and then drove home.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

1) Did I mention the wind?
2) Lose weight
3) Develop a better power/aero ratio, and be able to hold that position longer

Last updated: 2015-05-27 12:00 AM
01:10:11 | 40 kms | 34.20 km/hr
Age Group: 0/29
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Wind: Strong with gusts
Course: Pancake flat, windy. Same area as Eagleman.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence:
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills:
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 2
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Ok
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2015-06-01 12:52 PM

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Middle River, Maryland
Bronze member
Subject: Church Creek Time Trial #1

2015-06-01 1:04 PM
in reply to: #5119592

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Subject: RE: Church Creek Time Trial #1

Oh, man, the wind!!  Not much you can do about that.  Hey, great first attempt into a new type of racing.  You learned some things, had a good finish based on your own similar past efforts, and finished upright, all positives in my book!  Good job and good luck in future TTs!

2015-06-01 3:02 PM
in reply to: melbo55

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Denver, CO
Subject: RE: Church Creek Time Trial #1

Great job, Mike!!  Sounds to me like wind was the major factor, not you.  (Well, okay, if you want to get a new bike, there's definitely an argument in favor there.)  You put in a smart effort and I'll bet your tri experience helped you have the mental capacity to finish as well as you did.  Good thing there was no pesky run at the end!!

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