Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Sooke Spring Triathlon - Race Report! it is! Am I happy with my performance? YES! Could I have done better.....YES! Overall in my age group (40-44) I ended up being 9 out of 16 finishing triathletes...once again I stand in the middle of the pack. Not the fastest but certainly not the slowest either. So how did it go? Read on! Results posted HERE

Swim - 700m
This is my weak sport, I never really swam before and I had to learn everything right from the most basic things. Yes, I still drop my elbows...

When I registered I had to predict my time and I wrote 15 minutes. I based this time from a 1500m time trial done at Commonwealth Pool a few weeks ago. I calculated 1500m in 31 minutes....approximately 2 minutes per 100m. So 700m in about 15 minutes....give and take a few seconds per 100m.

I was assigned the fourth heat (out of 11). The fourth heat really meant the 4 slowest heat. I had a white swim cap which meant I was the leader of my lane (4 people per lane). 9h35 AM, GO! I start and try not to let the adrenalin burn me down, I try to pace myself but I quickly find out that I can sustain the pace, I breathe every second stroke and I quickly create a gap between myself and the other ones in my lane. I am pleasantly surprized! 28 laps later in a 25m pool I get out...I am the first out of the water for my heat. YESSS!!! I am happy and quickly get out of the building trying hard not to slip on the wet floor. Outside on the cement I start running and take time to smile at my wife....a smile for the camera!

My swim time is officially 13 minutes 6 seconds or 1 minute 52 seconds per 100m. I am happy!

T1 (Transition 1 - Swim to Bike)
This was NOT good! Not at all!!!!!

As I run in the transition zone I try to find my bike...where is it? There are bikes all over the place! When I get to my bike, I put my sleeves on, my socks on, my shoes on, my jacket on (which was actually not necessary) and, mistake, my bike pump in my back pocket. I put my helmet on, grab my bike and start to run. My pump falls out of my pocket, I turn back and put it right back in my pocket and re-start running...the pump falls AGAIN! I spot coach Clint and I imagine him rolling his eyes...I feel stupid! I get on my bike, put the pump back in my pocket and swear that if it falls again...I will not get it back. My time in transition? Too long: 3 minutes 36 seconds! Just to show how bad that transition was, it is good for you to know that the top athletes spent less than 30 seconds in T1. In my defense, I have to mention that I do not have triathlon bike shoes (they can be worn without socks).

BIKE Leg - 20km
I am very happy with this. 40 minutes 26 seconds for a hilly, 20 km ride (30km/h). I found the first minutes quite painful, my legs felt like Jell-O and my heart rate is right up there (adrenalin!!!). I have lactic acid build-up and I wonder how I am going to do this. I keep going and try my best, first hill...downhill.....second hill! I try to catch up to the cyclist right in front of me, which I did quite easily. I gain confidence and it seems like my legs adapted quite well. I start to hammer it! I surprise myself with speeds of 35km+ on false flats (uphill). I try to go as fast as I can on downhills sections. It's going well until I get to "The Wall"....I see people cheering .and I just want to impress them. I go as hard as I can, I am almost there!

T2 (Transition 2 - Bike to Run)

Guess what...? The stupid pump fell again...right in front of coach Clint! Arrrgh! I hang my bike, remove my shoes, put my runners on, remove my jacket and then my helmet...always remove your helmet last! I take a sip of Gatorade and off I go!

Run - 5km
It's uphill....all the way. My legs do not feel like Jell-O this time...they feel like freakin' cement! It hurts but I am confident in my running abilities and I actually felt pretty good despite very high heart rates. I cross people now going downhill and cheer for them...after all, they suffer just as much as I do! My run time is not good (but it includes T2): 26 minutes 21 seconds.


I am happy I did this very first triathlon. I learned a lot and I had a blast! Next time I will get CO2 cartriges and save precious seconds and, most importantly...not look like an idiot trying to keep my pump in my pocket! Oh yeah...before I forget....Island Triathlon did VERY well....we are certainly NOT a "farm team" as suggested by a Human Powered Racing Team athlete....By the way, we did better than he did!