B - 2 great workouts, one race
R - 1 great workout, 1 race
Time - roughly 18 hours
On a (relatively) last minute whim (and keeping the desire to cherry-pick a race in mind) I signed up for the Huntersville Sprint Triathlon early in the week. After doing Cool Breeze each of the past two years (one month earlier, swim is half as long) and hating every single minute of it I had sworn off that race altogether. That being said, Huntersville is usually much more pleasant. The weather did not dissapoint, as the day dawned bright and early (but not all that early, I got up just before 6am - I love local races!!) and mostly warm-ish. I arrived at the race site, picked up my packet and did a little warming up on the run and in the pool to get ready.
My start time was 8:00:30am and I was the third to go off behind a masters guy and Derek Kidwell. Donny started two spots behind me I think and I figured (if he showed up) Donny and Derek would be the main competition. I knew Derek was a very fast swimmer so I figured he'd be very competitive at this distance...
Swim 500 yards (plus run to mat) in 6:07 - 2nd
I pushed off the wall wearing my brand new ICE Racing top and B70 PZ3TX and tried to keep it nice and easy. Unfortunately (as usual) while it *felt* easy I was actually crushing the first 100. I didn't look at splits but I'm fairly confident I went out a bit quick. Anyway, I used Derek and the other guy as a gauge by seeing where they were each lap and trying to make up ground (or at least not give too much away). The swim went by pretty quickly and I can for once say that I didn't go off track at all and I'm sure that the distance was correct (another first for Setup Events and triathlons in general!). I slowed down a bit the second half as I went out a bit hard but wasn't worried about it as I could tell I was holding position with the two guys in front of me and putting significant distance on those behind. Plus, I wanted to exit the swim and be able to breathe; not like a 500yd TT where I get to the wall and throw up into the side thingies. No thanks. I finished the swim off strong, climbed onto the deck cleanly and ran out of the pool and across the mat.
T1 in 00:59 - 41st
I might as well have put "T1 in 'effing forever' - 41st" because that's about how long my T1 took. I lost good chunks of time to almost everyone. I had a bit of trouble flipping open my swim skin's zipper but had managed to get it to my waist by the time I got to my bike. I put on my helmet, stripped off the rest of the skin and put on my shoes before heading out under the arch. Somewhere in there I sucked big time but I can't put it on any one thing. Oh well.
Bike 12.5 miles in 30:40 - 1st
I headed out onto the bike feeling ok; the fastest seeded guy was close in front so up that first hill I passed him. Well, actually, I sign-posted him. That doesn't often happen so I feel the need to point it out. I also don't understand why people seed themselves so fast that finish 10 minutes back. Whatever. I could see Derek in the distance although he was much further ahead than I expected him to be. My :15s later start and slightly slower swim plus my dreadful T1 meant that he had roughly a minute lead on me out on the roads. I settled in to attempt to close the gap. I've discovered that I'm much better at reeling people in on flats and downhills than I am on uphills. In fact, I usually lose ground going uphill. It took me a while, but I eventually caught Derek although I wasn't going that much faster. I *should* have floored it for a bit to lose him completely (or try to anyway) but I didn't think about it. I figured I was a faster runner and really just didn't think about putting the pedal to the metal (I have yet to figure out how to do that in short races). We cruised back onto Verhoeff road and I actually split my fastest time on this particular bike course.
Only one person (I believe) has ever gone under 30 minutes on this course and that was Donny back several years ago (course has remained the same, although if I remember that day was fairly windy and the run course was extremely short). I took my feet out of my shoes and headed into T2.
T2 in 00:35 - 1st
Luckily I was quick here and had the fastest overall time. I love my new racing flats and laces. They are the bee's knees. Plus they match my kit. Boo-yah. You decide which I think is more important...
Run 5k in 16:40 - 3rd
I came out of transition like there was a crashed mountain dew truck 100 yards down the road. I was pretty much sprinting. I didn't want Derek to get a sniff of my heels and have something to pace off so I absolutely smashed it the first 8-10 minutes (hence my time to the turnaround of 7:50...). Once I had opened up an appreciable gap and reached the back half of the run (net downhill on the way in as opposed to slight incline all the way out) I parked it in cruise control for the rest of the run. I tried to look fast though, as I wanted to make sure everyone was like wow, that guy looks fast. Because that's what matters. I had the fastest run time out of the "contenders" group by a long shot so I'm happy with that.
OA - 54:59 - 1st
FULL RESULTS HERE
That's two good races in a row for me. Nothing crazy, nothing spectacular (the 5k time from Sunday was fast but people said the course was short) but two good, solid performances. I was EXTREMELY surprised with my swim time. My turns were pretty good and I had my slick speed suit but wow, that was fast. I haven't had a good full week of swim workouts this entire year. It makes me excited now that I *think* I've finally found a groove and am going to be putting in some consistent, hard work in the pool. LOOK OUT WORLD!!!!
note: I don't feel too bad about posting these images b/c tricycle puts almost no effort into taking good pictures and charges way, WAY too much for the ones they take. still, if you don't like it, don't look at it. Edit to add: TriCycle made me take the pictures down because I did not want to pay for them. Given that they didn't read THIS ARTICLE I'm not sure why I'd want to pay for them anyway.