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Athens Triathlon - Triathlon

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Athens, Texas
United States
78F / 26C
Total Time = 1h 37m 44s
Overall Rank = 195/
Age Group = 30-34
Age Group Rank = 27/
Pre-race routine:

I was not able to sleep at all the night before. We woke up at just after 5:30 and went to the hotel office to get some bagles and coffee. IN the hotel room we put on our peanut butter and watched a littl tube as we all began to shed the crusty eyes and come fully awake. Rack the bikes grab our stuff and off the race we went.
Event warmup:

Set up my transition area and get some more experienced triathletes to look it over and give me their thoughts. Pretty good for someone who has never even practiced this. Hector and I went for a quick 1 mile run as the time began to get closer and the meeting was getting called. The race was delayed due to fog in the area. The race had been delayed close to a full hour by the time the fog had lifted and the race had been called.
  • 08m 14s
  • 328 yards
  • 02m 31s / 100 yards

During this portion of the race I commited the cardinal sin of traithlon. I went out way too hard and I blew up after the first 100. As soon as I crossed the mat I jumped in and took off at a blazing speed (for me anyway). I passed a swimmer on the first wall and then another on the second wall. On the way to the third wall I began to notice that I was going to start having trouble. My heartrate was gettiing real high and it was becoming difficult to get a full breath. Ducking under the divider and begining my second 100 meters I realized I was not going to finish this swim strong as I wanted to. At 150 I was doing my recovery stroke to try and regain my composure, but to no avail I struggled to complete 50 meters at a time. By the time the run was finished I had been passed by 4 people and my heartrate was so high I could barely make it back to transition. I have been swimming just over six for my last month of workouts and to go out and get an 8 wass very disconcerting.
What would you do differently?:

Not go out so hard and blow up after the first 100. I need to work more on my swimming without using a bouy and work at recovering in the pool while swimming so that I am not taken by surprise next time. Go out slower and work my way into my stroke and rhythm.
Transition 1
  • 02m 55s

My heartrate was so high that I was having trouble calming down during the transition. I just tried to work through the steps that I knew had to get done so that I wouldn't get disqualified or a penalty. Felt like I was out of there much quicker.
What would you do differently?:

Having better control when I get out of the water will really help. Not sit down to put on my shoes and get the bigger clips, either SPD SL or Look. It is hard to run the old small SPD clips.
  • 52m 41s
  • 14 miles
  • 15.94 mile/hr

After the swim it took me 3+ miles to get my heartrate down to a manageable rate. One which I could actually begin to focus on the ride infront of me and put behind my swim performance. As I made the turn onto the highway I began to get everything back under control and move my focus to the bike portion of the race. My turnover was good considering the cycling that I have done since my rib injury. My legs felt strong and my breathing had settled back down and my focus was good. I began to come into my zone, focusing on the positive aspects of the race infront of me as I shed the disappointment of my swim performance. I passed 4 people that had exited the transitions before me. Most of them were on hybrids or mountain bikes so that isn't all that significant, but it helped me move quicker and feel more confident on the bike. I spent about 70 percent of the race in my aero bars feeling very strong. Coming back to the hoods in the climbs and resting in the arm rests to drink and hydrate.
What would you do differently?:

I did not hydrate properly and this contributed to cramps in my calves on the run, in which I had to stop and stretch them out. My rear derailer was not shifting properly I was clicking it 2 and 3 times and still getting no response and then it would suddenly click into the higher gear. Get that fixed. Work on my power more, which in turn will bring up my speeds and my confidence on the bike.
Transition 2
  • 01m 37s

Again I realized how hard it was to run in these small clips. That will be something that I change rather quickly. This should have been a quicker transition. I felt strong coming in and I thought that I had moved quicker. I will have to try and figure out how this can be improved, perhaps with just more experience.
What would you do differently?:

different clips on my pedals. Not really sure how this will help, just make it easier to clip in after the exit and maybe a more stable surface under foot when not clipped in.
  • 32m 14s
  • 3.1 miles
  • 10m 24s  min/mile

I ran a 10:20 during the portion of the race, which isn't all that bad for me. Problem is that it included the breaks that I took to stretch out my calves and I would have posted a much better time if it weren't for that. Possibly in the high nines or very low tens. Coming into the run course I saw Brad who had already finished and was enjoying a banana at the entrance to the course. he gave me some words of encouragement by telling me I looked strong and to keep it up. A slap of the hand sent me into the first turn of the course. On the trails whithin the first mile of the course I saw Deborah coming the other direction about to make her last turn toward the finish line. She was looking strong as ever and offered her words of encouragement. As I was exiting the park I saw hector making his turn in and with about a half to three quarters remaining he was looking real strong. A slap of the hand and some encouraging words lifted me even higher as I began to realize I was on my way to completing my first triathlon. At the turn around I grabbed two cups of water and slowed to a brisk walk so as not to breath the water in through my nose and instead take the water into the part of the body that really needed it. A few drinks and a splash on the head and I was on my way. The final lef of the run was out there and was begining to come into my zone. At the turn into the park I knew that I had just about three quarters left to go and I still felt strong. I wanted to have some left for a sprint finish. Rounding the last turn I could hear the people waiting at the finish line. As I came out of the tree line and saw the finish line I began to pick up my pace and increase stride length. Brad, Deborah and Hector were all there telling me to run faster and clapping. What a relief the first one was in the books and except for my less than desirable swim time I had done rather well.
What would you do differently?:

Hydrate better on the bike and don't forget that gu that I should have downed on the bike. It may have helped with my cramps. Sprint harder toward the line I still had quite a bit left at the end. I could have pushed harder on the bike and the run.
Post race
Warm down:

Took off my chip, gave them the bottom of my number and then went to great my friends outside the box. Went to get some gatorade and some oranges and then waited for them to post updated times and bring out the potatoes. Another trip to the gatorade table and a trip to the finish to see my posted time. The potatoes are out and one last sprint to the table for some food.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

My swim performance was the most disconcerting part of this race. My hydration needs to get better on the bike and that will help on my run. I need to push harder on all disciplines of the race and finish hard.

Event comments:

Upon arriving in the morning there was a dense fog that had settled in. This was out of the directors hands and USAT did not want to start with that heavy fog so we spent a lot of time talking and hanging out waiting for them to call the race. My target was to finish in less than an hour and forty-five. I did that and I can be happy with my overall performance. It is when I break down the individual elements that I realize where I went wrong. My swim is something that I need to improve on and move on from it. I am concerned that I won't be able to do better even though I know deep down that I can. I just need to get back into the pool and swim until I get my confidence back. All in all I beat my projected time and still had fuel left over. I will do better on my next race and I will finish harder.

Last updated: 2006-11-07 12:00 AM
00:08:14 | 328 yards | 02m 31s / 100yards
Age Group: 28/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Bad
Course: Indoor Pool. Water was very warm.
Start type: Inside Pool Plus:
Water temp: 0F / 0C Current:
200M Perf. Below average Remainder: Bad
Breathing: Bad Drafting: Bad
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 02:55
Performance: Below average
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Good
00:52:41 | 14 miles | 15.94 mile/hr
Age Group: 26/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Wind: Little
Course: Chip seal for the first 2-3 miles and then after that it was all fast and smooth until the last 2-3 miles. The police were out in force to ensure our safety and that was greatly appreciated. When spotting an oncoming cyclist they stopped traffic and allowed us to pass. The drivers were very corteous and did not honk or yell any complaints or more colorful phrases. The drivers had been alerted to our presence do the existence of very many signs telling drivers of the cyclist on the roadways.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 85
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Below average Hills: Good
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Not enough
Time: 01:37
Overall: Average
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike Average
Running with bike Below average
Racking bike Average
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:32:14 | 03.1 miles | 10m 24s  min/mile
Age Group: 26/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Average
Course: Course was flat with few turns and it was a beatiful day as the fog from early in the morning had lifted and the skies were clear and the wind was still. The runners on the course were great and very encouraging. There was one aid station at the turn around and one at the entrance. Given my hydration on the bike I could have used on more station, but if I hydrate properly out on the bike this wouldn't be a problem.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? No
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? No
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2007-03-12 10:22 AM

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Extreme Veteran
DFW Metroplex
Subject: Athens Triathlon

2007-03-12 1:22 PM
in reply to: #719787

Spring, TEXAS
Subject: RE: Athens Triathlon
Congratulations on finishing your first triathlon! Its good that you beat your goal time and still learned some valuable lessons you can keep in mind for next time.
2007-03-12 1:30 PM
in reply to: #719787

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Extreme Veteran
Land of living sighs
Subject: RE: Athens Triathlon
Good work on your tri.

I feel your pain. I had an aqua Du on Saturday night and my breathing just shut down during the first few indoor running laps.

I learned a lot too.

It's all good!

2007-03-12 5:42 PM
in reply to: #719787

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Wylie, TX
Subject: RE: Athens Triathlon
Congrats on your first Triathlon.
2007-03-13 1:54 PM
in reply to: #719787

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Extreme Veteran
Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: Athens Triathlon
VERY solid first triathlon. You obviously learned a lot, so imagine how great your next will be! Well done!!! And congratulations! Welcome to the addiction
2007-03-13 3:19 PM
in reply to: #719787

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Austin TX
Subject: RE: Athens Triathlon
Good job on your first triathlon!

2007-03-15 12:16 PM
in reply to: #719787

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Longview, TX
Subject: RE: Athens Triathlon
Congrats on your first triathlon!  It sounds like the lessons you have learned will help improve your time tremendously the next go-round.  Keep training hard, and good luck!
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