Sunday, April 26, 2009

Cold, wet, miserable Triathalon (oh yeah, it was awesome!)

Bib number 125 didn't do nearly as bad as I thought I was going to at the Brookings "I'm Ready for Summer" Triathalon.

I woke up and looked outside this morning and said to myself

"Self--it's gonna be a cold, wet, miserable day".

And ya know what, I was right!

I loaded up my bike (in the car) and all my gear including essentials I'd packed last night like a sun visor (and neglecting unnecessary items like a stocking cap). After grabbing a quick breakfast to eat in the car and some coffee I was off-- headed north, jammin out to my new mix cd. About an hour later I showed up in Brookings and found the college wellness center and HPER. I looked at the drizzle and decided to leave my stuff in the car awhile while I looked around. Eventually I set up my bike in the transition area (with a plastic bag over the seat) near the exit.

A little before 10 (starting time) they gave us the pre-race instructions. Swimming was going to be 10 laps, 2 to a lane. They had a mat setup to walk across to start timing, then you could dive (or jump) in the pool to start swimming. After 9 laps the lap counter would put a kickboard in the pool to signal 1 lap remaining. I had a horrible lap partner (lane hog) which pushed me into the wall and ladder a number of times. grrr. My swim time ended up 11:36, or 65th overall.

After swimming I ran over to my clothes and towel and dried off as best i could, then slipped on my 2XU compression calfguards, socks, bike shoes, and long sleeve shirt. Down the stairs and outside to my bike where I put on my Heart rate strap, bike jersey, helmet and gloves(it was cold-- wish i had full coverage gloves). Out the T1 exit took just a few steps (I had a good spot) and I mounted up. I couldn't see anyone ahead of me to pass, so I just set my own pace. The heavy cross wind (from the east - 20mph or so) made the aerobars too tricky to use so I rode in the normal rode bike position. 3 miles in we turned East, directly into the wind. The aero bars were great on this stretch, letting me get lower on the bike. I kept seeing people coming back from the turnaround zone, but still nobody was around to pass (Did I mention I was 3rd from the last person in the water). I think if there'd been some rabbits I'd have gone faster on the bike.

Finally the turnaround zone beckoned, and I braked and pulled a quick U turn. Thank goodness the guys at Spoke just gave my bike a once over, the brakes (on such a wet day) worked great.

The next few miles until I turned south were fantastic. I averaged 25-26, slowing down to 22 on the gradual uphills. I passed one rider like he/she was standing still... and it felt GOOD!

After the turn south to town I saw another rider in the distance. I used the tree belts to drop in the aerobars and accelerate (rising back up when the wind came back) and caught & passed this rider as well. Eventually I made it in to T2 and hung up my bike. I pulled off my shoes (which were SOAKING wet) and debated changing socks- but then looked down at the puddle I was standing in and couldn't figure out how to change into dry socks and keep them dry. I ended up slipping my shoes on and taking off, ripping into some sport beans as I went.

The run around campus was wet. W E T. Well, to be fair, it was raining the entire time on the bike, but I didn't really notice it. Now I was cold and approaching miserable.

I kept sneaking glances behind me and saw 3 runners. They kept me going (the one guy blew by me-- he wasn't very fast on the bike but he sure could run)-- every time I thought they were catching up it'd give me another minute or two of running. At one point I could hear them talking and panicked, bursting forward for 100 yards or so. The folks putting on the tri had stationed college kids at nearly all of the turns- to check off as runners went by and to give encouragement/directions.

The most depressing stretch was when I saw the cone marking 3 miles and I couldn't see the finish. 3 miles! that's long enough. Where's the damn finish.

I hit the corner and turned and saw the finish and sprinted (just like Carl Lewis.. you should have seen it!) for the end. All my fans were cheering (oh wait, it was just the guy timing). I stumbled over to the door and heard them announcing winners and prizes inside. Apparently they figured I wasn't in the running and decided to start prizes without me.

Unfortunately, my times weren't in the computer when I left, so I had no idea how I'd done.

When I got home I pulled up my results on the computer

Swim: 11:36, 65th
Bike: 44:02, 40th
Run: 44:25, 90th (ouch. this needs work)
total with transitions 1:47:15, 75/95 overall

They didn't do a full breakdown by age, but I didn't do too bad for the 30-39 bracket. I did really well for the 30-39 Clydesdale bracket (pretty sure I would have gotten 1/1)

Now I need to figure out what race is next. The 10 day forecast for Siouxperman says no rain and 67 degrees... but can you trust a forecast 6 days out?


Bryan Cimicata said...

Great Job Matt....the run will come it just takes time.....if you have the money I highly suggest Zoot's running shoes they are designed for triathlons....socks not needed. I love mine....on my second pair, light comfortable, and no need to put socks on...keep up the great work.

your friend,

Tez said...

GREAT JOB MATT and in CRAPPY weather also!