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Deuces Wild Triathlon - Olympic Distance - TriathlonOlympic

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Show Low, Arizona
United States
85F / 29C
Total Time = 3h 30m 6s
Overall Rank = 168/197
Age Group = M 35-39
Age Group Rank = 18/22
Pre-race routine:

We left home about 9:30am Friday, stopped in Gallup for lunch, and arrived in Show Low just in time for the 3pm pre-race meeting. The park and facilities at Fool Hollow Lake are really nice, but the parking is very limited so they were asking people to park at the High School on race day, then athletes could ride their bikes to the venue and spectators would be provided with a shuttle bus.

The lake water was 66F and seemed very clean. I did a pre-race swim in my wetsuit. As soon as I got into the water I stuck my face in and started crawling. Not 10 strokes in I stopped out of breath and hyperventilating. Uh-oh, this is going to make things interesting tomorrow.

Also during the pre-race meeting they mentioned that the swim would NOT be clockwise (buoys on the right) as indicated on the website course description, but rather counter-clockwise (buoys on the left). OK, this was going to make things even more interesting, as my left-side breathing is not all that great.

Thanks to the free wireless internet at the hotel, I was able to do some research on BT and found some great advice on OWS preparation that really helped on race day (see below).
Event warmup:

Had a bland dinner at JB's, a great night's sleep, and left the hotel about 6:15am to ride my bike over to the race site (about 3.5 miles). Got to the race venue just as the Deuceman (HIM) racers were starting their swim. Olympic did not start until 8am, so we had a while to stand around and prepare. Got to see the Deuceman racers come out of the water, which allowed me to see how the wetsuit stripping area worked.

About 25 minutes before my wave start, I used the porta and then got into my Promotion full wetsuit. Based on my negative experience yesterday, I decided I needed to get into the water and acclimate and relax for 10-15 minutes before race start. Fortunately there was an area by the dock opposite the boat ramp where we could warm up. I got into the water and just floated around for about 10 minutes. Then I put my face into the water and gradually, slowly, stroked a few crawl strokes. Then a few more, still keeping it very slow, almost like doing TI drills. It felt great, I felt ready. So far the plan was working. OK, time for the Oly wave starts.

  • 34m 24s
  • 1640 yards
  • 02m 06s / 100 yards

I seeded myself near the back of the wave, when the gun went off, I just put my head down and starting stroking very slowly, concentrating on a long long glide and long breaths. Worked like a charm - at the beginning we were all bumping into each other but never disrupted my breathing and I never got punched or kicked in the face. I did go by a couple of guys who were breast-stroking and gave them a wide berth to avoid the dreaded frog kick to the head that I have read so much about here on BT.

I tried to sight a few times, but all I could see was caps. Couldn't see the buoys for the caps. But I figured if all of the caps are right in front of me, that probably means I'm going the right way. Got to try my first hand at drafting, which went pretty well. About halfway through the swim the following wave (AG women) started to catch us. I managed to hop on the feet from this wave a few times and got a little pull.

All throughout the swim I kept colliding with people, some initiated by me, some by others. It never seemed to cause a problem for me, which was quite a relief.

Got out of the water and ran up to the strippers, told them "ankle zippers, ankle zippers" as I was sitting down and one of them figured out that I had ankle zippers :) and unzipped them and pulled my suit off with no problems.

Goal time: 35:00
Actual time: 34:24
Result: VERY satisfied

What would you do differently?:

I need to practice OWS more but I knew that. Given my lack of OWS practice and my previous poor OWS performance I am overjoyed with this result.

The full suit was perfect for the 66F water. I would say if the water temp goes higher than about 70F the full suit will start to become uncomfortably warm.
Transition 1
  • 03m 38s

Jogged over to my bike, found it with no problem. Sat down, dried my feet, and put on my socks and shoes. Put on my Garmin 301, beanie, helmet, and sunglasses. Slapped a little more sunscreen on my shoulders. Jogged carefully with the bike across the timing mat and to the mount line. The T1 exit chute was about 8-10 feet wide with orange fence on both sides.

Two ladies were getting onto their bikes along the left fence so I went to the right side, glanced behind me and saw nobody, then stopped and clipped right it. Had to dodge around an orphan bike shoe right in the middle of the chute, then had to dodge around the owner of the orphan shoe who was swimming upstream with her bike in the exit chute to retrieve her shoe.

T1 rank: 16 of 22, 140 of 197
What would you do differently?:

Need to get better (more waterproof) sunscreen so that my inital application lasts longer.
  • 1h 29m 41s
  • 24.85 miles
  • 16.63 mile/hr

I GOT A FLAT!!! The good news is that I was able to change it and get back onto the road within about 3-4 minutes and I still made my goal time.

I was VERY surprised to get a flat. I use the Conti UltraGatorskins which are darn near impenetrable, but I hit a 2-in diameter chunk of pavement going about 30mph and it pinch flatted my back tire. Good news was that it was at about mile 20 and we were back into town so there was a sidewalk for me to use while doing my change and I didn't have to kneel in the brush.

I managed to get down 6+ shot bloks during the first hour or so of the ride. I didn't quite finish my water bottle which may mean that I didn't quite get enough water.

Goal time: 1:30:00
Actual time: 1:29:41, including a flat
Result: Satisfied

What would you do differently?:

LOL, not flat.
Transition 2
  • 02m 3s

Just dismounted as usual and jogged over to my bike rack. Swapped shoes, helmet off, running hat on. Stuck small tube of sunscreen into my pocket along with a couple of gels. Wife and kids were there by now and I posed for a quick picure and gave a high-5 to the 6yo.

T2 rank: 14 of 22, 111 of 197
What would you do differently?:

  • 1h 20m 18s
  • 6.21 miles
  • 12m 56s  min/mile

Well, the run is always where things fall apart for me. I was able to run slowly for about the first mile, then I realized I was in mid Z4 and would not be able to hold that effort for 5 more miles. So I walked for about a quarter mile, and then was able to run for about another mile. After that I started to alternate between being hungry, feeling over-full with water, calves screaming, and quads screaming. It was over. I was walking mostly with intermittent half-hearted jogging for the last 4 miles. When I realized that my finish time was going to be greater than my previous Oly run time of 1:15 that was the bottom.

The good news is that I saved enough juice to put in a nice enthusiastic sprint for the finish line, complete with a smile for the cameras.

Goal time: 1:12:00
Actual time: 1:20:18
Result: Disappointed

What would you do differently?:

Need better run fitness. Prior to this race, I was thinking that I might go into a run focus plan for the rest of the summer. After this race, I am convinced that is what I need to do.
Post race
Warm down:

Hung around for a while and checked out the snails and crayfish that my girls caught in the lake. The post-race food and drink for the athletes was good. The post-race BBQ was pretty average and didn't have any kid-friendly or healthy options. This would not have been such a problem if it wasn't an hour-long prospect to get back to the car via the shuttle bus.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Severe lack of run fitness.

Event comments:

Great race, great venue, great organization and everything happened on time. They had a finish line announcer calling out everyone's name and hometown. Good post-race food for athletes. Having to park off-site was a hassle but given the venue I'm not sure what else can be done. Quality and variety of food at post-race BBQ was the only disappointment.

Last updated: 2007-03-08 12:00 AM
00:34:24 | 1640 yards | 02m 06s / 100yards
Age Group: 16/22
Overall: 148/197
Performance: Good
Suit: Promotion Full Suit Sleeveless
Course: Triangular, counter-clockwise
Start type: Wade Plus: Waves
Water temp: 66F / 19C Current: Low
200M Perf. Good Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Good
Waves: Navigation: Average
Rounding: Good
Time: 03:38
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? No Run with bike: No
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Good
01:29:41 | 24.85 miles | 16.63 mile/hr
Age Group: 19/22
Overall: 155/197
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: Loop course with many rollers, a couple of 2% climbs and one pretty good 6% climb. Overall it's much less hilly and thus faster than my training routes. Mostly smooth surfaces, but construction and rumble strips on AZ-77 makes for crowded shoulders for that 6 miles section.
Road: Smooth  Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Time: 02:03
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
01:20:18 | 06.21 miles | 12m 56s  min/mile
Age Group: 20/22
Overall: 181/197
Performance: Below average
Course: About half unpaved and half paved. Moderately hilly, starts out around the lake, then through the campground, then out and back down a residential street.
Keeping cool Below average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2007-06-03 11:17 PM

Subject: Deuces Wild Triathlon - Olympic Distance

2007-06-04 12:13 AM
in reply to: #827843

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Subject: RE: Deuces Wild Triathlon - Olympic Distance

Nice RR!  I'm going to follow your example of the swim when I do the Mountain Man next month.   Hanging around in the water for a while and doing a little warm-up was a great idea.

Way to keep things cool after flatting too.   Sounds like you had a great race and kept yourself from letting the altitude affect you like it probably did most people.

2007-06-04 11:59 PM
in reply to: #827843

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Subject: RE: Deuces Wild Triathlon - Olympic Distance
Nice job! Good swim especially! Looks like you are a quick flat changer too.

You can get a lot of OWS practice in at Ashley Pond. It is great water to swim in.... LOL

If you do SOMA, you'll find the run easier... flatter and 1100ft... lots of nice air for your 7700ft lungs to breath!

I got up there about noon.... too bad I didn't bump into you... I had my pickup at the race site. Maybe next time.

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