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Valley Girl Triathlon - TriathlonSprint

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Spokane, Washington
United States
Emde Sports
95+F / 35C
Total Time = 1h 17m 30s
Overall Rank = 163/543
Age Group = 40+ Athena
Age Group Rank = 2/17
Pre-race routine:

The race didn't start until 9:00, but the club was meeting at 7:15 to ride down to the start together. Up early for a glass of water and my usual morning coffee, then a wholewheat bagel with peanut butter. Everything was packed and ready to go, so just threw it in the car and headed off before anyone else at home woke up.
Event warmup:

Swam a bit - boy, were those weeds healthy. It was like a forest down there, and there were enough tall ones that my hands went through them on each stroke. Had a bit of anxiety about the weeds, but got over it. I decided to think of it like a mermaid's world - geeky, I know, but it worked. Also, discovered a tiny hole in my fancy new tri shorts - they rubbed on the velcro of my tool bag...darn. Borrowed a marking pen to blacken the white spot of skin that showed through. :)
  • 10m 23s
  • 440 yards
  • 02m 22s / 100 yards

Not having my wetsuit kind of threw me. I knew I could swim the distance with no problem, but I couldn't seem to keep my feet from kicking too much and felt like my breathing was out of control the whole time. The water was a great temperature, though. Our club was well represented at the race and in my wave, so it was fun to have some familiar faces around. We swam out past a small yellow buoy and around the first of three big green ones. The three green buoys were in an arc instead of a straight line, so when I rounded the first I looked straight across to the third one and totally missed the second one. The whole crowd tried to cut the arc off, so I wasn't alone. I kept seeing a long kayak right in my swim line, so finally popped my head up to look and had to correct to go out around the middle buoy. They had shortened the swim from 1/3 mile to 1/4 mile, I think it was because wetsuits were prohibited. And they started the 40+ Athenas (my group) with the 40-44 age group instead of in the last wave. It was nice to start in the middle instead of at the very end of the race. I didn't get bumped around hardly at all during this swim and exited the water feeling pretty good even after swimming over and through all the weeds on the way back in.
What would you do differently?:

Keep control of my feet to try to keep my HR down a bit. Not miss the second bouy. Really was a pretty good swim.
Transition 1
  • 01m 47s

I jogged to my area and only had to look back once to count the racks. I have a squirt bottle to rinse the sand off my feet, so I squirt then put my foot down into my shoe. The first foot went fine but I was a little dizzy and couldn't get the second one rinsed for what seemed like forever. I wear gloves to protect my hands in case I were to fall - I don't want to risk missing the rest of my races for something like that. Helmet on, glasses on, and ran out the the mount line. Could NOT get my foot to clip in. Several people passed me while I was standing there trying to clip in. Darn - need more work.
What would you do differently?:

Clip in faster. Otherwise, this seemed like a good T1. I was 74th out of 543, so definitely room for improvement.
  • 34m 18s
  • 11.5 miles
  • 20.12 mile/hr

I really like doing this race for a lot of reasons, one of which is that the ride because it's about the only one I ever get to pass anyone. There are a ton of women on the course by the time I get out there, and this race attracts a very wide range of abilities. I am a relatively strong cyclist in this field, so I get to say 'on your left' and 'good job' a lot. A bunch of them passed me while I was trying to get my foot clipped in, but once I FINALLY got going, I felt strong. Once I was riding, only one person passed me the whole ride. She didn't blow by me, but I couldn't keep up and watched her ride off into the distance. Saw a lot of Team Blaze jerseys out there - made me want to get a club tri top even though I really like the black one I have. The riders tended to bunch up so I had to go wide in the road to pass. Also, right before the turnaround at one out-and-back, I got stuck behind a line of cars going very slow. Several people in front of me crossed the yellow line to get by - I decided to wait until they all were stopped by the volunteers. I probably lost a bit of time here, but it seemed like the thing to do. Overall this was a great ride.
What would you do differently?:

Clip in faster. I don't think I could do the shoes-on-the-bike thing with the shoes I have, so I'll just keep working on the clipping in.
Transition 2
  • 01m 37s

I put my socks on in T2 to protect my tootsies. I thought it was fast, but I was 166 out of 543 in T2 - guess I should practice a bit more. Grabbed my belt, hat and flask and took off.
What would you do differently?:

  • 29m 23s
  • 3 miles
  • 09m 47s  min/mile

This was a hard run. Immediately from T2 the course goes uphill. I was able to keep running this year - last year it was a lot harder. AND the hills didn't psych me out like last time - last time when I realized mid-run that the rest was uphill, it sapped my energy and I walked...this year I was able to just adjust pace and keep going. I had a rabbit this year, too. There was one woman who started with me that I thought was in my group, and I could spot her easily because of her top color. She was up ahead of me and I struggled to catch her the whole run. With about a half-mile to go, the course levels out a bit so I ran a little faster to try to catch her. I was able to pass and thought that was all I had, but as I was running the last few hundred yards someone said she was coming and I could hear people yelling for her to catch me, so I ran just about as hard as I could to the finish. I thought I had done that before, but never with someone right on my heels, so I found I could actually go faster than I thought I could. :) Guess that's what a winter's worth of BT will do for me... sprint to the finish indeed. Turns out she wasn't in my group, but it was really fun to have a rabbit anyway. Fun run and I think this is the first time I've ever broken the elusive 10 minute mile mark.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing. I ran about as hard as I could today.
Post race
Warm down:

I hate that they make you stop right at the end to give them your chip. When I did my treadmill test over the winter, I had to stop right at the end and I could watch my BP drop on the monitor. During the test when this happened, I felt terrible, like I was going to pass out. When I train, I always walk a bit after my run and don't get dizzy when I stop. So the last two races I have just gone by the chip-collectors and tell them I'll be right back. I think they think I'm going to puke or something, but it's worked a lot better for me. I walked away from the finish line and around for a few minutes, then came back and gave them my chip. THEN I got to stand and cheer the rest of the women in. That is a blast. After the finishes, I went and hung around with my buddies at our club tent. One of our members is a massage therapist and was doing massages for us - that was about the best thing ever. Qdoba did the post-race meal...that was about the second best thing ever. :) And I got to run down to pick up my 2nd place medal! Woo-hoo! The timing was all messed up - a lot of people were timed in the wrong age group, which made the race times wrong. They asked everyone to check and to tell the officials, but I bet they missed some people.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

That's easy - missing the bouy, not being able to clip in, and extra weight on

Event comments:

I really like this race. It is well organized, the course is swept clean, there are a ton of volunteers and cheering spectators, and the post-race activities are nice. It's like a big party with music and booths and a water sprinkler park for the kids to play in. If you do this race, remember it starts relatively late at 9am, and the awards don't happen until early afternoon. Overall, this race is one of my favorite and I would encourage any woman to do it, especially as a first race because it is such a supportive atmosphere.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2007-05-21 12:00 AM
00:10:23 | 440 yards | 02m 22s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/17
Overall: 72/543
Performance: Good
RPE was too high with no wetsuit and the weeds.
Suit: None
Course: One lap counterclockwise. Three big green buoys to swim around, with an additional smaller one on the out and back legs.
Start type: Wade Plus:
Water temp: 78F / 26C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Average
Breathing: Average Drafting: Below average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 01:47
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Good Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed: Bad
00:34:18 | 11.5 miles | 20.12 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/17
Overall: 37/543
Performance: Good
HR too high, especially for the first couple of miles.
Wind: Some
Course: Three out and backs on this course and a lot of corners. Start is uphill, end is downhill.
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 89
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Time: 01:37
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal Good
00:29:23 | 03 miles | 09m 47s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/17
Overall: 163/543
Performance: Good
HR and RPE still high
Course: One loop with an out-and-back in the middle, net elevation gain.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
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

2007-07-17 8:07 AM

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Spokane, Washington
Subject: Valley Girl Triathlon

2007-07-17 10:26 AM
in reply to: #888819

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Spokane, WA
Subject: RE: Valley Girl Triathlon

Great race! Over 20 mph average on the bike and sub 10 on the run. Awesome! I am glad you had a good race and that all the hours you spent training yielded 2nd in your age group. See you in Colville!

2007-07-17 7:14 PM
in reply to: #888819

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Subject: RE: Valley Girl Triathlon
Way to go on your times!!!  You've really sped up!!!  It was fun to see you out there zooming along.
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