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Hammerhead Olympic Triathlon - TriathlonOlympic

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jacksonville, Florida
United States
Total Time = 2h 55m 28s
Overall Rank = 169/
Age Group = 45-49
Age Group Rank = 14/21
Pre-race routine:

My pre-race routine really started Saturday afternoon. I packed up all my gear and staged everything by the front door. My wife got home from work about 6:45pm. We got dressed and went to a Luau. There was much meriment and dancing. 1:30am we got home from the party and I went to bed hoping that I hadn't forgotten anything.

4:30am wake up. Normally this wouldn't be such a big deal but bed time was only three hours prior to that so I was feeling a little groggy.

Started the coffee, took a quick shower, then ate some dry toast.

I left the house by 5:10am and was at Camp Blanding by 5:30am. A great WHO song was playing on the radio so I sat in the car until it was over. I really wanted to close my eyes and take a little nap but I was afraid I wouldn't wake up till noon or so.

I got out of the car and picked up my chip and got marked. I got a primo rack spot due to my early arrival.

I set up my transition and did my mental walk through a couple times. I wandered around making myself familiar with the ins and outs of the transistion. Then I looked around for anyone I knew.

I ran into KendallF. He was heading to get marked so we chatted and he introduced me to his wife and daugter who were volunteering.
Event warmup:

I visited the porta-potty a few times then got in the lake for a little warm up swim. The water was warm and clear.
  • 36m 38s
  • 1640 yards
  • 02m 14s / 100 yards

The water was great. I could see people around me under the water so sighting was pretty easy.

I got caught up in the moment and realized that I was swimming faster than I should. I tried to slow myself down but didn't have any success with that. I was swimming right along with Kendall intially.

I got to the first corner and got tangled up with the masses a little bit. Shortly after the turn my body told me what my brain had been trying to tell me earlier: "YOU ARE GOING TO FAST". It told me that by sending my heart rate through the roof and making swimming difficult due to the huge amounts of air that it required.

At this point I was forced to breast stroke. I moved out of the main lane to avoid kicking other swimmers and started an internal dialog with my brain and body to see if I could get them to work together again.

It took about half way through this leg of the triangle to get it together enought to freestyle again. A couple minutes later there was another revolt.

This time it was my calves. They seemed to think that they should cramp up. And I mean CRAMP! No pool edge to hang onto to work this out so I tried a couple different techniques to get un cramped. (swimming limp legged, pointing my toes different ways, etc.) The cramps passed and I was able to continue my crawl toward the second corner.

I got around this bouy ok. As luck would have it this leg was right into the sun so course correction sightings had the effect of blinding me. I was settled back into my freestyle when I got bumped into. For some reason this caused the cramps to come right back. I was able to work through this episode faster and managed to keep on trucking.

The water was so clear that I could read the markings on peoples legs as they were swimming past me. I saw one legs that said 71 on it. This provided me with some motivation too keep on going so that this old dude wouldn't beat me out of the water. There was no doubt he would have a better swim time though because I am pretty sure he started a wave or two behind me.

Out of the water finally and up the hill!
What would you do differently?:

Swim my own pace.
Transition 1
  • 02m 39s

There were a couple hundred yards to run on the asphault after getting out of the water to T1. This pretty much sucked due to the roughness of the pavement. I was so happy to be out of the water that I told my feet to quit complaining or else.

I put my helmet on first thing, then my number belt, then I put on my socks and shoes.

This all went pretty well and I ran out of transition and did a rolling mount as soon as I was past the line.

I don't know if the transistion time included the run from the water or not.
What would you do differently?:

Not much. I mentally practiced (visualize) my T1 before the race and that really helps me.
  • 1h 15m 41s
  • 24.85 miles
  • 19.70 mile/hr

My plan for this race was to survive the swim, ride hard, and use whats left for the run.

I pretty much stayed with that plan. I tried to stay in aero position as much as possible but there were a couple turns where it was prudent to have my hands on the brakes.

I tried to keep my cadence high and spinning smooth. I passed plenty of people and a few passed me.

I managed to eat a Gu or two and I ate part of a Clif bar. I drank as much of my gatorade that I could and took a water on lap two. I refilled my aero drink with that and dumped the rest on my head. I stashed the empty bottle in my race belt and then handed it off the some volunteers at the runners mile 1 water stop.

I really enjoyed the bike portion. I rode hard but I didn't really max out so much that I wouldn't be able to run.
What would you do differently?:

nuttin honey (except maybe ride faster)
Transition 2
  • 01m 25s

T2 went well. I took the time to put my HRM on. It conficts with my cycle-computer so I didn't have it on during the ride. I chose not to run with my fanny pack water bottle.

I put a couple GUs in my short pockets, grabbed my bandana, put on my hat and shoes and I was gone.
  • 59m 7s
  • 6.21 miles
  • 09m 31s  min/mile

I felt pretty good coming off the bike so I was hoping to continue that...

I was looking at my HRM and trying to balance keeping a decent pace with keeping my HR in check. I was never able to make my HR go down from the 160 something I started with.

I took water at the first stop which was fairly soon after transition. Shortly after that I was talking to one of the other runners. He said he was doing fine but had forgot to grab his gel at transition. I had two so I gave him one. He was grateful and I felt good about helping him out.

There was a portapotty at mile one so I took advantage of that to take a leak.

Most of the water stops had ice cold sponges as well as water and gatorade. That really helped cool me down.

About two miles into the run my gastrointestinal tract started to complain. It became very apparent that I was going to need the service of another porta-potty soon or uggliness was going to happen. I eyed the woods along the course a couple times. I had my bandana so I had everything I needed if I had to go that route. Luckily there was a porta-potty in sight about 1/4 mile past the mile 3 water station.

I focused on the little blue building and told my bowels to hang on, I would get them there as soon as possible.

I beat a couple volunteers to the door (thankfully it was vacant) and slithered out of my sweat drenched tri suit as fast as I could. I was kind of hoping that this respite would give my HR a chance to back down but I guess the 200 degree oasis I was in didn't allow that.

Once the paperwork was completed I did my best to get back into my tri-suit and get out of there quickly. I didn't have the heart to look the volunteers (teen age girls) in the eyes as I left.

I felt much better now and get back to running (?). I saw Kendall again as I rounded the corner of the course that was to take me up the next hill. He made a comment about how much the hills sucked. I looked ahead and could see why.

I went up the hill thinking that at least I get to go back down when I am done. There was a water stop at the top that you got to hit twice due to the turn around a little ways up.

It was when I turned around and looked down the hill that I realized that I had been going down hill prior to going up hill and that was going to be another up hill going back. Now I knew what Kendall's comment was all about. UGH!!

The rest of the run (?) my body didn't complain too much. I kept trying to keep my HR under my 100% zone but I sure couldn't get it to drop much.

At one point I had looked at my watch and realized that I should be able to get in under 3 hours. That thought perked me up a bit. I kept on pladding along. 5 miles done, 6 miles done, OH Yea! I can see spectators ahead.

I heard them yelling at someone: "Your almost there. Kick It!" I heard my brain tell my ears that if they heard them yelling that at me that the correct response was "I thought I was kicking it!"

Thankfully I didn't have to respond to that. I saw the finish line ahead and tried to look like I was having fun. They called my name as I finished, that was cool. Somebody asked if they could take off my chip for me. I just nodded my head. I couldn't have stopped her if I tried anyway so go for it.

Somebody else handed me a cool looking running hat with the HOT logo with flames on it.

There was a table with water available at the finish. This was the only water that I had been offered all day long that wasn't ice cold. I am not sure if that was by design or what.

Not far from the finish line I saw Kendall laying under a tree and Renee sitting on a cooler. We exchanged greatings. Renee offered me a drink. I declined at that time as I saw the sprinkler tent right behind them and I was determined to stand in that for a bit.

What would you do differently?:

Run faster. Not spend 2-3 minutes in the porta-potties.
Post race
Warm down:

Walked over towards the water exit to pick up my sandles. Got that neat "world is spinning" sensation when I stood up after bending over. Stood in the sprinklers for what seemed like an hour. Finally took Renee up on her offer of a beer. Oh man that tasted good! Thanks Renee!!

I hung out with the gang until the awards cerimony was over. It was a good time.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

cooking myself in the first part of the swim didn't help. It took a while to recover from that. (Exploding bowels in the run didn't help either)

Event comments:

Something I left off of the Swim start. The national anthem was sung by the whole crowd led by one of the military competetors. This was awesome and really made me feel good.

Something they do at this race is to have a silent wave start first in the swim in honor of the military serving to keep us safe and free. The crowd had been pretty noisey and raucus prior to this. When the race director made the anouncement to start the silent wave,

The whole crowd went completely silent!

Not a peep, nothing. Complete and udder silence for a good two minutes. That really moved me!

Last updated: 2006-04-23 12:00 AM
00:36:38 | 1640 yards | 02m 14s / 100yards
Age Group: 14/21
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Course: Roughly triangular shaped. Keep the bouys on the left and don't hit the dock were the race directors instructions.
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current:
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Average
Breathing: Below average Drafting:
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 02:39
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: Yes
Getting up to speed: Good
01:15:41 | 24.85 miles | 19.70 mile/hr
Age Group: 12/21
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: The course was pretty good. You had to do two laps. The turns were ok. There were a few hills that slowed me down some but there were downhills that helped average out the speed.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 95
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Time: 01:25
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes Good
Jumping off bike Good
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:59:07 | 06.21 miles | 09m 31s  min/mile
Age Group: 12/21
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
max HR 186 (107%) avg HR 168 (97%)
Course: Hilly asphault roads.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2006-08-28 12:28 PM

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Orange Park Florida
Subject: Hammerhead Olympic Triathlon

2006-08-28 3:01 PM
in reply to: #524341

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Wife, Mother, Friend.
Subject: RE: Hammerhead Olympic Triathlon

Hey! I remember a guy passing me on the bike and handing off an empty water bottle to the volunteers!  That was you? 

Nice to meet'cha!! 

2006-08-28 3:22 PM
in reply to: #524613

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Orange Park Florida
Subject: RE: Hammerhead Olympic Triathlon
Lucy - 2006-08-28 4:01 PM

Hey! I remember a guy passing me on the bike and handing off an empty water bottle to the volunteers!  That was you? 

Nice to meet'cha!! must be the boy scout in me...I just don't like to litter.  I am always coming home from a run with sticky pockets from packets of GU.

2006-08-28 3:33 PM
in reply to: #524341

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Subject: RE: Hammerhead Olympic Triathlon

I thought the anthem and silence was VERY cool, too.

Thanks for the race report! It was great to finally meet you! GREAT job on your tri - your times look great!

2006-08-28 8:21 PM
in reply to: #524341

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Littleton, CO
Subject: RE: Hammerhead Olympic Triathlon

Sounds like a great race! I am glad you had fun! Contrast your hot day to my freezing one...maybe we should meet for a race in the middle of the country somewhere, where it's not a temperature extreme!


2006-08-30 10:22 PM
in reply to: #524341

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Hammerhead Olympic Triathlon

That was a rocking race, especially for your first Oly ever! I know everybody around seems to want to hear the digestive system details, but you can leave 'em out of the report from now on..

Had a good time and it was great having a beer afterwards as well. We need to do that beer part more often.

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