Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sunrise Series Triathlon #2 (or My Big Fat Reality Check)

Today was my first triathlon against other people in about 11 years. (See below for Simply Stu Worldwide Tri results from Feb.) It was a sprint distance (450 y swim, 13 mile bike, 2.6 mile run) and I was ready. I knew I could do the swim in about 9:30 and run about 9 minute miles off the bike. What I didn't really know was how I would do on the bike leg. I ride alone on rough roads so it is hard to gauge my progress on the bike. I did know that in my training log I see lots of "Easy Bike" entries and no "Bike Interval" entries and my longest ride in about 5 weeks was the race distance. Somehow, I was hoping that my general fitness and race day adrenaline would help me to pull 17 or 18 mph out of the bike.

Weather conditions were good, the air temp was about 64*F and the water temp was about 75*F. I warmed up in the pool a little bit, just to make sure the water was not too cold. We lined up by our estimated times, I got in the 9 minute pack and they started us one at a time in the pool. I took it easy, got passed by a few people, got sandwiched in between people with no where to go, but generally felt great and didn't want the swim to end. I took my time in T1 (2 minutes) to make sure I didn't forget anything and just to savor the moment.

I got on my bike in a light drizzle and started out. I was hoping to hold about 17 mph for the 13 mile bike leg. I started out well, but a little past the turn around, I started to fade. I had one gel with me and had planned on taking it at mile 10. I took it at mile 9 when my speed fell to about 14 mph. It helped a little bit, but I was just under trained on the bike. I finished with an average of 15.8 mph.

T2 was a little bit faster (1:19) because I practice that one a lot when I do bike/ run workouts. When I started running I was a little winded (just from excitement, I think) so I took it easy until my breath evened out. Then I ran as hard as I could until the finish. The only thing that threw me off a little bit was that there were no mile markers. I had no idea how fast I was going or how far I had gone. I was able to guess by how much time had gone by, but that was just a guess. Overall, I had a load of fun and can't wait for the next one.

Here are my results
450 yard swim: 9:28 5/8 in age group
13 mile bike: 49:28 8/8 in age group
2.6 mile run: 23:24 5/8 in age group
Total Time: 1:25 5/8 in age group

The harsh reality: I have not really been training on my bike. I have been using the bike as active recovery for my runs! I need some long ride and intervals in my bike plan. I also think that I could have used 2 gels in the bike instead of 1. We shall see on June 14th!

For pictures of the race go to

I am # 324 in page 36, #475 on page 53, #1008 on page 112, #1010 on page 113, and #1150 on page 128.

Sorry this took so long to get up, but I have still been working even though school is out!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Love you, Mom!

As part of my preparation for my sprint tri tomorrow, I was visualizing each part of the race. When I got to the run part, I realized that if I was doing it right, it would hurt or at least be uncomfortable. So, as I was mentally rehearsing running through discomfort and what I would say to myself and what I would ignore, etc. I thought of my mom. She is a breast cancer survivor who endured two surgeries, chemo, and radiation as part of her treatment. Not to mention the fear, uncertainty, and constant monitoring that go along with a cancer diagnosis. So I called her and told her that I was running for her and that if she could go through all that with grace, then I could hurt for 2.6 miles. Since she IS my mother, her only concern was "But I don't want you to hurt". What a lady!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Slow Down to Speed Up

I was at an educational conference a few weeks ago and the speaker was talking about "Slow Down to Speed Up" in terms of instruction. You know, slow down to make sure all students master the skill before continuing on. This saves you time in that you don't have to reteach the skill later. I was thinking, this also applies to triathlon. Slow down to speed up. Slow down, improve your form. Slow down, plan your workouts with purpose. Slow down, listen to your body. Slow down, cook and eat healthy, balanced meals. Slow down, reflect on your training and be grateful. Slow down to speed up.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Tri it AGAIN this weekend!

The last two weeks of training have been nice and solid and I feel ready to have a great time at the second Sunrise Triathlon next weekend. The first was rained out, so this one will be my first official triathlon in 10 years!

The race will be a 450 yard pool swim, a 13 mile bike, and a 2.5 mile run. My plan is to have fun, go as hard as I can, and be thankful whatever the result. I'll keep you posted. Speaking of posted, summer is coming soon and I will be updating the blog much more frequently. So keep coming back, and bring a friend!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Catch Up Time!

Okay, so much has been going on that I have not written anything in weeks! Work has been really busy. I was out of town for a conference and we are winding up a great school year which means lots of little chores. We have also been going to lots of family things for birthdays and Mother's Day, etc. which keeps us running. AND of course, tri season has started!

My first sprint of the season was scheduled for May 3rd, but we got lightning, thunder, and rained out. It was a bit disappointing, but who wants to swim in a thunderstorm? It was good practice for packing up my gear, etc. and the pre-race clinic was very informative.

I has said last post that my swimming seemed to be improving and my last swim was also good. I had put down that I could do 400 yards in 10 minutes on my race application (it's a time trial start in a pool) and last swim, we swam 10 minutes for time. I was going really easy and I did 375 yards, so I know I can do 400 in a race in less than 10 minutes. So that got my swimming confidence up a bit.

Last weekend my sister, my friend Hope, and I did a tiny 5K in a small, nearby town. It was Hope's first 5K and my sister's first in a while. I was hoping to beat 27 minutes, but I had a bad race. It was very hot and I am not acclimated yet. However, it was good training in mental toughness and I had a great time with my sis and friend. I usually either go by myself to races or my husband and son come to watch, but don't run. It was a lot of fun to have friends in the race. I also won second place female overall due to the smallness of the race, so that was a nice perk, even though it was not my best race.

My next sprint will be on May 24th and it is 450 yard swim, 13 mile bike (I think) and 2.5 mile run. I am looking forward to that, but have downgraded my running and biking expectations until I get used to the hot weather we are having right now. I am so grateful to be healthy and have a supportive family that indulges my crazy triathlon hobby! Just getting to race is a joy for me this season, if I do better than I expect it will be icing on the cake.