Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Red Bank Olympic Tri Race Report...And General Catching Up

Well it has been a while. I was getting a little tired of typing so I took a few days (ahem weeks) off. But I am back with my first Olympic Tri race report of the season. So here goes! The morning of the race, I was getting up at 4:45am and heading to Red Bank and Nick was getting up at 5am and heading to the airport for a week of business in London. Needless to say I was a little bummed that I would be going to my first tri of the season alone, but I had done this one before and let's be honest, triathlon is a pretty friendly sport so I knew I would make friends and find someone to talk to before the race.

I got down to Red Bank at around 5:45, ate my applesauce and headed to pick up my race pack and set up transition. I was all set up at around 6:15 and had an hour to spare before the race began. I gotta say I really didn't have the pre-race jitters as much as I thought I would. Rumor was the water was around 66 degrees and the only course change was in our favor. The swim course had been reversed so we were swimming more so with the current.

So I hopped in line for the port-o-juan a few times and emptied my stomach before race time and then we all headed down to the water. We had to wait for the sprint waves to go and then the Olympic waves began. My wave was all females competing in the Olympic distance. We were actually quite a small group. When told, we all jumped in the water and paddled out to the start. After peeing and testing the water, I realized the rumors were true the water wasn't that cold. The year before I remember the shock of the water my face as I swam, making it hard to breathe. This year it didn't seem that bad at all.

They counted down our start and off  we went. To be honest I had no idea how I was doing on the swim. I was off somewhere in my head thinking about things like, Nick and what he was doing on the plane and what I was going to do after the race. I had a few instances where I had to choose between swimming over or around people, one time resulting in a nice elbow to the nose,  but other than that I had no idea how I was doing. I was just swimming. The only bad part of the swim was the final stretch back to the docs. You were swimming parallel to some boat slips at another doc and you were being hit from waves coming from both directions. So I could imagine if you had a weak stomach getting sea sick was probable. I finally saw the ladders at the docs picked up the pace and got out of the water.

Since the swim pattern had changed the new run from the dock to T1 was a bit longer, but this has never been something I have struggled with. I took off in a sprint and was to my bike in no time. I was out of the water at 25:51, which was 3 minutes fast than last year and off to the bike.

As I mentioned the run to T1 was a bit longer. I made through T1 in 3:08, 1:15 of which I will allot to the run to the transition area. But here is where my major mistake happened. I had placed my three gus in my riding cleat to assure that I would put them in my pockets before putting my cleat on. Well instead I dumped the cleat on the ground, put it on and took off out of T1. Once out I realized that I had not gu, so i was going to survive on Gatorade during the ride.

The ride was the same as last year, very challenging. It was a series of rolling hills with 3 large ascents spaced out throughout the course. There was really no part of this ride that was flat. I remember it being quite hard last year so I was ready for it to be the same if not worse this year considering I was going in with a little less tri training. I ended up with a bike time of  1:29, 3 minutes slower than last year. I am not sure if this was a result of zero nutrition on the bike, but all I can say is when I was done, I was happy to get off the bike.

Back to transition, I was in and out of T2 in 1:43 and this time I remembered my gus. I grabbed a few extra just in case and ate one on my way out. Much like the bike, the run was again exactly the same. It was a gradual incline on the way out and then you got to run the decline on the way back. I remember how much I hated the portion where we had to run through a field around mile 2.75, but when I got there, I sucked it up and picked up the pace. At the turn around I started to feel a slight aching in my knee, so I did what I knew best and that was run faster. I know I should have stopped and walked but something in my head just told me to push it.

The three miles back I picked up the pace and starting picking off runners left and right. The only thing is that the people I was picking off were in the age group above me, not mine! On the final turn I gave it my last bit of energy and crossed the finish with a run time of 52:29. I came in 9th in my age group but as I predicted from last year, the field was larger and my AG had doubled in size.

My final time was 2:52:19 and for the first attempt of the season I was satisfied. I had pushed and done my best and felt great.

Then it was off to the beach for some pizza and a nap. Since the race, I have spent the last week riding, biking and swimming and taking a little time to have some fun. I am planning on having a ton of fun and get a little bit of training in this weekend, when me and a few girlfriend's, take on Cape Cod for a few days. So if you live there beware!!

Now that I have you all caught up on my life I have to go refuel for a quick swim and spin class.

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