Sunday, September 30, 2012

Last try tri RR (tri #5)

I cannot believe that I have already done five triathlons, that makes me a seasoned triathlete, does not it?

I should name the post "How I got my a$$ kicked". I really need to put my shi* together because you cannot race on a type of training I currently do. And I will indeed start as soon as I unpack the microwave, my suitcase etc.

I have not put much thoughs into the race since I was not even sure whether I can do it or not until yesterday. And my whole preparation cannot be even called haphazardous, it was much worse. I finally put the bike together last night and have not even riden it to see whether it shifts or whether it won't fall apart half way through the race. And I just put the seat based on "feel"- I looked and it seemed about right. Then today morning I did a loop in a parking lot to make sure that it indeed shifts and it somehow did (although it is not perfect. I guess that's what happens when the bike takes 4 flights in the last 7 days and I myself instal a rear derailler), although I forgot to check the front shifter. And I forgot to buy chocolate so I had to eat two Luna bars and one banana with peanut butter for breakfast. I was also considering to wear those goggles I wore in Hannover, you know those that fog after 3 minutes and I do not see anything. But I decided that I need all the help I can get to compensate for my less than spectacular swim/bike/run fitness so I used a brand new pair.

So the race.

Swim: I swam around 24min, which totally means that it was short. I felt good, although I was powering through it and did not feel very smooth and efficient. I think that I had a good swim although when I compare my effort here and in Hannover, Hannover swim felt like I was working much harder, like my head was indeed i it. I did not find any feet although there was one girl swimming next to me and when I tried to get on her feet I always lost her and could not catch her. So we kind of end up swimming next to each other and she walked to the transition so I beat her there.  Why do people walk?

I did not do a flying mount because it was uphill and the path was very narrow and I have not sit on a bike for two weeks so I made a last second decision not to do it if I did not want to take some out and end up in a pile on a side. So I stopped and clipped in. That, I am not proud of. I though I was braver, but apparently I am a sissy.

Bike: It was two 21mile loops and my plan was to hold around 200 watts (if my Joule works because I changed the battery yesterday and did not bother to check whether it syncs with my Powertap), be conservative because I knew that I have no bike fitness and will likely either be a first loop hero or die on a run. Although there is really no reasoning behind those 200W since I "trained" with power whooping 4 times this year. I chose 200 because it is a nice round number. But I needed some goal, otherwise I would be dilly dalling around. I had no idea in which place I was but made a decision if a girl goes by me I will try to stay with here. But no girl went by me and although I passed some people I have no idea whether some of them were girls or not. Then I passed one guy and then he passed me and we were kind of riding together, changing positions. I do not even know what the no-draft zone is supposed to be but I held quite a good distance from him so I am sure it was legal. Maybe I should have even stayed closer but did not want to risk it. Then we picked up one more guy and rode together for 1 loop and a half. Course was great, we went through three bridges accross the Rend lake, so it was very nice.
Maybe around mile 25 I started to realize than my seat is way too low because my hip flexors and knees started to feel very uncomfortable. Also my handle bars were scewed to the left and my left arm was getting numb. Of well, what did I expect, right?
The last 15 miles were pretty much a struggle to keep the watts up, although 200watts was pretty much a lost cause by then. So I was indeed a first loop hero:)
You will not believe this but I ate two gels and drank 3/4 of my Powerade bottle (or Gatorade, I never know which one it is, I always take the one that is closer on the shelf)! Seriously! You see, I am starting to get this whole fueling thing:)
I did the ride in around 1h56min.

Run: It was horrible. First 1.5 miles were ok, but then it was getting worse and worse. Course was rolling hills and since I am weak as a fly I was struggling on uphills and was freaked out on downhills because those are very bad for my ITB. It was out and back and I did not meet any women going out and then saw one 2min back whe we turned and she did not look like she could make 2min in 5k so I shut it down completely. Basically it was a jog all the way and of course I did not meet my sub 43 goal. I went 43:35.

This is a horrible RR. I probably sound very negative, but believe me it was all good and fun. The result reflects circumstances, my attitude and my preparation.  But I am satisfied because as I said my goal was to win and have fun and those were reached:) I know that I probably should not have done the race considering everything going on but I wanted to do it to meet some people in the area. And even that did not work out because I asked at least 30 people (some of them twice:)) and nobody was from the area. Which means that the sport culture is non-existant here and my only hope is the director of the swim facility at a local cummunity college who won a sprint distance the last two years. I need to go talk to her next week.

By the way, that local pro who won the race last year dropped out after bike I think and if she did not she would have given me at least 10min. But she did drop out and I won a blanket. Which is good because I have slept the last 3 nights under a beach towel (you know, the one I won in Hannover) and I was quite cold last night. So now I can sleep under both a blanket and a towel (I need to go to MI to pick up my stuff including comforter).

Next up is to find training facilities, order a home trainer, and I am back to training! Mindful training! This year has been horrible so far but I am to train again with my beloved BSC and I cannot wait!!!! You cannot even imagine how much I am looking forward to it!

I met Elizabeth Waterstraat, she won a sprint distance and her husband was second in the long tri. I read her blog so I decided to say hi. I could not decide whether to approach her or not but then decided to stop by, because that's what a normal adult would do I suppose. 

And I am not going to buy that bike from Walmart yet. I am going to wait and make sure that I do not get fired tomorrow. Since tomorrow is my first work day of my first real full-time adult job!


  1. You need to stop being so hard on yourself!~ Ahem. You did great! You won. It hurt and maybe you were 45" slower than you wanted to be, but let it go. You won. Be happy. Congrats!

  2. You're awesome. Embrace never know when injuries, etc happen! You rocked it.

  3. Oh no, I am happy. I won, which was a goal:)
    I am just saying that I need to stop dilly dallying, otherwise I am going to die at Buffalo Springs Lake next year:)

  4. I can't believe I had to read this three times before I figured out whether or not you had won. Was it an Olympic Distance? (I'm assuming by the times) Was it big? Huge congrats! You learn a lot every time you do a tri, so next time I bet you will be more pleased with yourself. I am glad you have a nice blanket to sleep with now (or rather, anything is nicer than a towel!)

  5. Sorry, my writing sometimes tend to confuse people (so was I told).
    Swim and run were as in Oly distance but bike was 67k instead of regular 40k.

    It was not big at all! Only around 20 women. But I am signed up for a big race next year in Texas so then I will see what's truly in me:)

    That beach towel is actually really nice!

  6. Yes, be happy is right (MS!)....Enjoy the win and embrace it! Our races are never perfect. And, Elizabeth said she met you - glad you introduced yourself! :) I FORGOT you were back in Illinois now!! What a great time of the year to be in IL!