Sunday, November 27, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving ... how 'bout a triathlon to start the holiday?

For many years Carrie and I spent our Thanksgiving rock climbing in Joshua Tree, CA. This was already a departure from a "traditional" American Thanksgiving celebration.

For the past few years, we were close enough to our families to resume a more traditional gathering ... but this year we were back out west and in more of an active lifestyle.

-Small race report-

It was a chilly start to the YMCA Turkey Triathlon. It was in the upper 40s when I arrived at 5:15am to pick up my packet. There were 375 participants in the reverse triathlon that included a 2 mile run, 12 mile bike and 400m swim. Aside from the Solana Beach sprint race, this was the largest sprint race I have done ... some fast chicas and dudes showed up for a little Thanksgiving competition. Good! Let's do this.

- The Run -

The fastest pace I have held across two miles since I was 16 years old. I held a 6:13 pace. I believe I could have maintained it for a full 3.1 which would have put me at a sub 19 minute 5k. Needless to say this is exciting for me because I am starting my half-marathon training next week. Run time - 12:27. After my usual fast transition I was off on the bike.

- The Bike -

The bike time is good. I did not feel strong. I rode the new Specialized tri bike. It was my first race on this bike. This bike has a total of 50 miles on it so far ... I think I just need a little more time to adjust to the positioning and gearing. I averaged 22.6 mph on the bike for a 12 mile time of 32 minutes. I went to the wrong rack with the bike - so I cost myself about 25 seconds in transition looking for the correct rack. Someone had thrown their towel over top of my bright yellow bag that I always use to mark my spot. I am in 14th place overall! Let's get in the water.

- The swim -

I am glad I have been swimming so much this month - because this swim would have been brutal without the ramped up training. Two things mattered here: 1) The swim was last. 2) This is a 50 meter pool. I do not train in a 50 meter pool. This was the second time I have ever been in a 50 meter pool in my life. My swimming has been in either open water (which I still prefer) or a 25 meter pool. The swim was not awful - but my pace was slowed over my last 400m effort. 10:26.

Total time - 55:02 - 3rd in the age group and 24th among the men overall.

I have to STOP making mental mistakes when I am on the bike. This frightens me a bit. I am too focused on output on the bike to notice much else about what is going on around me. This is the fourth race I have had some sort of decisioning issue related to the bike leg. FOCUS!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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