Sunday, June 28, 2009

surprised myself today, Stamford Olympic

Went into today's Olympic tri with hopes of doing better than the Westchester Olympic last Sept. These two races are very similar in terms of courses, so a good comparison can be made between them.

I did today in 2:31:57. I did Westchester in 2:52:35......yeeeaahhhhhh, I sorta kinda shaved off ~21 mins. Heh....if I do that again I would be in Elite territory! haha.....unfortunately the curve for improvement isnt exponential 3-4 years running. But one can dream, right!?!

As for the official results, the computers got all messed up, BUT! they do have the splits, they just have to put em all back together. But as 0f now, I have my aproximate guesses based up bike computer and watch on the run.

Swim: ~25-26 mins for a 1:31 - 1:35 pace.
Bike: ~1:14:09 for 24.7 miles....19.98 mph average
Run: ~49:26 for 6.2 miles for a 7:58 min/mile avg

This race was a 2 part transition course. You swim, get on your bike, but you don't return to the beach. Instead you return to a 2nd transition in downtown Stamford where you have your run gear already set up. So this added some extra logistics and time to setting up everything. It was good though, because it forces you to prune the junk you DONT need in transition.

The water was colder than expected. They were guessing 70-ish, but since had 3 weeks of rain, the water was ~64/65. Its cool though, no way you were going to overheat!

I was in the first wave to go off and I stayed towards the back getting in. I went @ my pace. The sighting was good, but I kept drifting left even though I was aiming straight for the bouys. Otherwise, I wasn't zigzagging, just drifting. Current?

I felt comfortable by focusing on one bouy @ a time to break the race up. I felt sorta fast, figuring I would put in a 30 min-ish swim. There were no timers coming out of the water and I wasn't wearing a watch, so I just went with it. I had a good solid swim.

The crazy part was near the last bouy these 3-4 green caps of swimmers behind me were like a freight train just buzzing through water. They hauling!! It was inspiring actually.

Then a woman caught me @ the last bouy. She smoked a LOT of people by a good 8 mins. I think she took 3rd overall for the womens that day and 2nd overall @ tri ridgefield. Another inspiring thing to see someone swim SO fast.

This was the interesting transition, because not only did you have to do the usuals of getting out of the wetsuit and changing to go bike, but you had to make sure all of your non bike stuff had to get stuffed into a bag.

I had a little trouble getting out of the wetsuit, but other than that I was outa there in no time. No idea how long it took me.

This was a MUCH better bike than @ ridgefield. I took it easier on the first part of the course to let the legs loosen up in anticipation for the hills.

I was yo-yo ing and getting passed on the flats, but on the hills, I would fly past people. Why do people think that because its a race that you have to big ring it up a hill? I would love for everyone to do that and waste their legs so that I can kick their butts on the hill, but seriously! Swallow your pride and realize that you are gonna go faster in a small ring spinning than mashing some hard gear while wasting your legs.

I yo-yo ed with this guy for about half the course and he was clearly faster than me on the flats, but after the final (and steepest) hill I just easliy spun past him and I never saw him again.

I averaged 206 watts, also my best yet which is great since this is a longer course. My threshold is 220, so I almost hit it!

I like this course a LOT better than Westchester. More uninterupted opportunities to get into the aero position and just grind it out in a big ring. Of course, at ~mile 20 my lower back was starting to hurt and @ one point I just couldnt take it any longer and had to sit up and stretch it out. I think that moment right there and then cost me .02 mph difference. haha!

Felt great coming off of the bike.

Really uneventful. Just the usual stuff. I got my watch on as I ran.

I had no idea how my legs were gonna react coming off of the bike. Of course they had the usual peg like feeling, but I felt FAST. By mile 1 I was still hurting and it wasnt until about mile 1.5 to mile 2 that that switch went off. The run course was a 2 looper, so it was pretty cool to be buzzing by people who were just starting their 1st loop.

By the time I was hitting ~mile 4 the sun finally came out and it baked me for about 20 seconds, then went away. Oh man, had that sun not gone away, I think the last 2.2 miles would have been sheer torture!

At mile 5 the anticipation of finishing was starting to kill me. I just couldn't take it anymore!!! I started thinking of anything that could keep my mind occupied and not focus on the run. Fortunately I was coming back into downtown and the buildings and people started to distract me. Finally saw the mile 6 marker and dreaded the last .2 miles. But as soon as I rounded a corner there was the finish! I sprinted for it, saw the timer @ 2:31 and I mumbled sorta under my breath "Holy SHIT!!!" since I was expecting to finish in the 2:40:00 range and not almost break 2:30:00 on my 2nd over Olympic.

So in other words, I completely surprised myself and put in the best performance of my life in a multi-sport race!

I liked this race a lot and will consider doing it again next year.


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