Splash n’ Sprint Triathlon Race Recap
This was my first triathlon I have ever done. It will be a long journey before I can call myself an Ironman, but it was an integral step for it to happen. I tried to go into this race with an easy, almost nonchalant attitude, but I was so excited. I woke up at 5:15 and was ready to go. I didn’t have to be in Bountiful until 7, so needless to say, I had plenty of time on my hands to burn. After listening to various songs and such it was finally time to throw the bike in the car and head North.
I found a parking spot and saw my new buddy Jon getting his stuff into the transition area. There was plenty of time to joke around and such since the race actually didn’t start until 8. After getting an awesome TBR (Team Blonde Runner) tattoo on the leg and getting marked up it was time for out team warm up. We ran a nice slow mile and ran at race pace for roughly 20 seconds. Once we got back outside it was time to head inside to the pool. Photo below was taken right before we went inside to the pool. All smiles!
The first leg of the triathlon was a short 350 yard swim. I knew swimming was my weakest event, so I signed up for the 8 minute group hoping for the best. The worst thing that happened to me in the race actually occurred before it even begun. While standing on the edge of the pool waiting to jump in, my goggles broke off my head. I guess the old hand me down goggles tried to fail me before my first race. This was not a good start.
I escaped that crisis by doing some rigging to the goggles, and was able to salvage them after all. The funny moment of the race went to the girl who had no idea what she was doing. Instead of changing lanes on each lap, she tried to go down the same lane a couple times. Once she finally figured out to change lanes, there was a roaring Bronx cheer from the crowd. Of course I joined in on the excessive cheering as well.
Once it was finally time for me to jump in the water I was good to go. The race started with a staggered start, which really helped alleviate some of the crowds. The first few laps went by without much drama, but once I started to catch up to people, it was on. At one point I was trying to get around this girl so I touched her ankle, pretty common protocol to get past people on swims, and she freaks out. What does this gal do? She starts to kick violently and it appears that she doesn’t want me to pass her. So I decide I don’t have time to play these games, and I fall back until the next lane. Once I got to the wall and shot off on the outside part of the lane. I sort of had to force myself over and she began yelling obscenities at me. So I begin to laugh.
The only eventful thing that ended up happening in the pool after I passed that crazy broad was a nice race a guy and I had to the ladder. Of course I won. Sometimes I hate being so competitive, but then I remembered how much fun winning is HA! Once I got out of the pool I ripped my sweet orange goggles off and ran towards the transition area. I finished the swim in 6:39. I was really surprised by that time for sure. Photo below is running from the pool to the transition area. Speed is key.
On my duathlon http://ironmaninthesnow.wordpress.com/2012/04/15/the-legacy-duathlon-long-course-recap/ , the transitions were my weakest spot. Transitioning from swimming to biking this time was much better. I threw my socks, shoes, and helmet on in 1:03. Once I got to the area to mount on your bike I was off. All I could do on my bike was gear down and ride in the aggressive position. At this point I started feeling pretty good and continued to pass people. The bike was fairly uneventful except I did get passed once. I generally don’t do well getting passed, but that guy was an animal. It was so nice being out on the bike.
Once I was roughly a mile or so from the transition zone, a stinking train stopped me. There were several people that were stopped by the train as well. This delayed me for a little over a minute. However, I did see Jon hanging out waiting on the train, so him and I chatted briefly. Once the arms were raised, it was go time for a race to get back to the transition area. I was determined to pass as many people since everyone bottlenecked together waiting on the train. The 12 miles were completed in 34:08 with a max speed of 31.2 MPH.
Getting back into the transition was pretty easy. This time all I had to do was change my shoes, take my helmet off, and clip my number belt on. I will say that Lock Laces might be the greatest invention ever. You just slip your shoes on and run. Who needs to tie their shoes anymore? Transition 2 only lasted 43 seconds. See I am getting much faster with this stuff after all.
The last leg of the race involved a 5K run. My Garmin watch said the run was 3.3 instead of the 3.1 though. At the beginning of the run 3 guys passed me, but they were in my sights the rest of the race. Since I tried to push it on the bike, my legs were somewhat baked for the run. I started pretty strong though. Below is a photo of me just a little bit out of the transition area starting the run.
The first mile started with me putting down a 7:29 which surprised me since I thought I was running around 20 seconds per mile slower. I knew I wanted to keep my pace below 8 minute miles for the duration of the run portion. At around the 1.5 mile mark, there was a sign that said 1 mile. I thought that was pretty funny and I am sure it confused some people. After you made a turn off of the main road it was pretty much uphill for the last 1.5 miles of the run. I put down a 7:48 and a 7:47 minutes per mile for the next two miles. The run ended with a time of 24:20 and this involved stopping at an aid station since I was rather parched. Coming down the stretch I am almost home. I look like death in this photo, but I am surprisingly feeling pretty well.
After the race I am all smiles like always.
I crossed the finish line with an official time of 1:06:53. This was well enough for 2nd in my age group and 16 overall. I won a sweet towel for my second place finish and it is shown below. I was happy with my time, but realized there were spots I could have done better. With this being my first triathlon ever, I was pretty happy with the results though. Now I know what to work and will improve. I really needed this race though after two weekends ago with my marathon. I wanted a nice positive race to go into Fargo with next weekend. Now bring on the next marathon. Below is my second place prize as well as the medal. The medal has a bottle opener on it, time to have a cold one!
What I Learned:
On this race, I swallowed a lot of water. I messed up my stroke and ended up taking in a lot of water. I was proud of myself for not stopping rather I just tried to swim through it. There was a bit of coughing and such, but this was a very enjoyable race. As my first tri I felt I competed pretty strong and was happy with my results.
What I enjoyed:
The entire event was super nice. I would have to say my favorite thing is that the medal has a bottle opener on it. I think that is AWESOME!
Will I race this event again:
I will for sure do this race next year. It was a fast and pretty flat course. I am now looking forward to my next triathlon.