Salem Sprint Triathlon 2012
Starting your weekend off with a Triathlon always seems to do the thing to do right? Well as of Thursday May 31, 2012, I was not planning on doing anything this weekend besides rest. I have a couple triathlons the following two weeks so I was wanting to rest. I wanted to check the race and results schedule on here to update it, but then I noticed I had a tri this weekend. Oh NO! I have a tri in two days and I am so far from mentally prepared it isn’t funny.
With a quick search in Gmail to see if I paid for the tri, it was all signs go! So since I already paid you better believe I am going to get a nice race in. No time to mentally prepare, but I have been pretty active for the most part since the Fargo Marathon. I knew that I would be able to do decent, but my legs are still so tired. One thing I have learned this summer, DO NOT run 2 marathons in 3 weeks. Your legs tend to hate you.
I have no bounce to my legs currently, so I will run a tri to get over it. Today started with arriving at, fellow team member, Chris’s house in order to car pool down to Salem, UT. It isn’t a far drive, but riding together was pretty enjoyable. He printed off the course map and we were able to discuss the course since he had done it a couple times. There were 4 of us total and 4 bikes, we were quite a show to see. Below is a photo of the car fully loaded. My bike is on the right. The blue machine I have not formally named her yet :( I’m a slacker.
No worries, I am just as surprised as you are we all fit. Thanks Chris for driving! Well getting to Chris’s house at 6:20 in the morning was a chore, but he only lives a few blocks from me. We got everything loaded and we were headed south. I tried to get pumped up for the race, but I just couldn’t. I slept really bad last night and just no desire to do anything it seemed. I really wanted to rest. No time to rest when you have your first open water tri. That is one thing that has always had me concerned was the open water. I know swimming is my weakest sport, but I am working on it.
We got to the race and I had to still do packet pickup. Once we finally got everything setup in the transition it was time to relax and just breathe. I was able to tune out a little bit and try and get into my racing mindset. Nope still wasn’t feeling it UGH! This is just going to be a middle of the pack race I was thinking the entire time. The view from the transition always makes me feel better though.
After the MC did his spill, it was time to finish getting the wetsuit on and go play in the water. The swim consisted of an 800 meter open water dip. I am so thankful that I looked at the website last night. I was planning on just going there without the wetsuit. The website listed that wetsuits were mandatory. HA I caught a break with that one. Well since I am still a young gun, I started in the heat after the pro/elite category. Once we were going I was very nervous. I went straight to anaerobic it seemed immediately. I think my nerves had to do a bit with it.
I got kicked in the head a few times. What a great way to start a race eh? Since I just recently learned how to spot, I just kept the big orange buoy in my site. There were people around me that were piss poor at doing this. One guy I swear was making Z’s while swimming. He swam on top of me a couple times. So annoying. If he would have gone straight he would have killed the swim. Due to getting kicked in the head and continuously hit by other people, I swear I drank over a gallon of lake water. The lake was straight up nasty though. I was told earlier in the day they found a dead body in the pond a few years ago. GREAT!
Once I saw the beach it was go time. People were swimming to the buoy on the beach, but I just swam to the closest point on the beach. This worked out perfect for me and it was legal. I jumped out of the lake and started running. My conquered at least halfway my first fear. The second part of open water swimming is removing my wetsuit in a timely manner. I saw my angels. Attractive females yelling out strippers; can life get better HA!
I had the girls help me remove the top of my suit. I figured I could remove the bottom half pretty quickly once I got to my bike. The downfall to this tri is the distance running between the beach and the transition zone. I swear it was like 0.2 miles from the beach to transition zone. I ended with a swim time of 14:20. While the ladies were helping me strip down, I accidently hit the pause button D’Oh. That made me loose a few seconds from my Garmin time and my official time.
Getting to the transition I felt awful. I knew I had to continue plugging away though. Throw my socks, bikes shoes on, and my helmet then run to the mounting area. Once I was on the bike I figured it would be downhill for me. I have learned generally I do pretty well on the bike and pass a lot of people. This time it was different for me. I felt AWFUL!
The lake water really started screwing with my stomach. I got pretty nauseated, but knew I could power on. Only like an hour or so left right? Getting into the aero position was just tough. I felt like I wanted to puke I even tried to puke while riding. The lake water didn’t want to come back up. I guess I would just have to tough it out. No way was I going to stop.
The bike consisted of 2 – 6 mile loops. There were a few hills and we covered 553 vertical feet total on the two laps. On the first lap I became pretty defeated mentally. I had several people pass me that were on really nice bikes, but I didn’t have anyone in my age group pass me. I am sure that there are tons of people in my age group way ahead of me.
The streets were pretty beat up in terms of rough pavement. On my second lap, there were a lot more people on the bike course. This is for sure the benefit of starting before others. It seemed I wasn’t really able to get over on the right side of the road like you are supposed to due to people just going slow. Thankfully though, I had a nice deep burp which helped clear the air/water swallowed on the run. Time to hangout in aero position and just try to pass as many people as possible. My second lap was nearly 2 minutes faster so clearly something changed.
Getting back into transition was a breeze. I passed a couple guys right before I went into the chute and got yelled at for going too fast. Whoops don’t have the transition at the bottom of a hill! The bike course took me 35:21 to complete it. The transition only involved throwing my running shoes on and my bib. I was there for a total of 1:17. I blame the length of this on the amount of running I had to do once I got in there.
I broke one of my big rules on this race. My shoes are DEAD. They have roughly 400 miles and 2 marathons on them. It was time to get new ones. So what do I do Friday night? I buy new shoes of course. Having never worn them, I figured I would still be ok since I only had a 5K to run. The run course was tough I will say.
It seemed the sun decided to come out on the run course and I was fading. I swear the first 1.5 mile was uphill the entire way. The aid station couldn’t have come soon enough. Since I felt pretty bad on the bike, I didn’t take in enough fluids. Once I reached the aid station I took in a GU and drank water. This helped provide me the spark I needed. I might have gotten passed by several people, but yet again no one in my age group passed me. This point I am hoping for an AG top 10 finish.
Once I had .4 miles left on the run I really tried to book it more. The entire race I felt like I wasn’t moving very fast. I knew I wasn’t but I did end the run with a 7:52 min/mile average. This includes walking the aid station so I will take that. I would have been happier with a 7:15 min/mile pace, but oh well always next race.
Crossing the finish line was really nice since no one was behind me. I finished with a total time of 1:17:54. My goal was for 1:10, but I honestly did not know what to expect this race. I was happy with my time since I felt so bad on the bike. After cheering on two of our other team members across the finish line, I figured I would go look at my placement. What do you know 3rd place overall! This makes 3 multisport races and 3 podiums. I am starting to think they might not be a fluke after all. I really enjoy this triathlon thing. There is not a photo of me on the podium; my dumb phone was acting stupid. This is a good looking group of teammates. I swear I am on the best triathlon team in Utah. Go to the facebook page and give us a Like https://www.facebook.com/TeamBlondeRunnerTriathlon
Chris, the guy on the right, and I we both won 3rd place in our respective Age Group. Below are the medals we won.
What I Learned:
I learned that I might not be as bad at this whole triathlon thing as I though. I did learn a lot about open water swimming since it was my first race involving it. Being able to continue to spot the buoys really helped me out a lot.
What I enjoyed:
I really liked the entire race. Getting on a podium will never get old. I will say my most enjoyable moment was passing a 63 year old man. I passed him and just thought boy I sure hope when I am even in my 50’s I am able to get after it like this guy. I don’t know the guy, but he is for sure a hero of mine.
Will I race this event again:
Absolutely! This was a super fun race, and I know that this race is pretty competitive from talking to people afterwards. Whenever I can get on a podium I will enjoy the race. It seemed very organized with plenty of volunteers. Overall a very fun event!