This morning I raced the Independence Triathlon, a last minute addition to my race calendar. This super-sprint distance (500m pool swim, 6 mile bike, 2.25 mile run) tri's goals were to assess if I could even run a bit, get a TT swim time, and remember that there were these things called transitions. There were not many participants (under 200). I decided to race Clydesdale and I finished as second Clyde. This was my first medal I've ever won and the first time I was called up to the podium.
The swim was a snake swim in a 50m pool with 10 lanes. (A snake swim is where you swim to the end of a lane, duck under the lane lines and swim back in the next lane. Repeat until done.)Each swimmer went off every 5 seconds and everyone was supposed to seed themselves. This is where the biggest fail of the day happened. I though I seeded myself in the 2:10 per 100m section but when I watched the people swim before me I realized that I probably was a better swimmer than many of them. I got in and almost immediately the people behind me blew by. When I came up to the 150m mark, 7 people were hanging on the wall and I couldn't even get a touch. On the next 50m I had to sprint to get around a bunch of slower swimmers and I was blowing myself up with the sprints. At 200m I looked at my watch to see my pace and it showed 00:00 since I must of missed the start button when I hit it at the start. (Fail yet again). The congestion got worse and I had to stop a few times mid lane due to it. I got caught behind 3 breast strokers side by side by side with no opportunity to get around them. I realized my goal for a decent TT time wasn't going to be all that good since I was waiting too much. Even so, with no wetsuit and no pull buoy (I've almost been exclusively swimming with a pull buoy to avoid stressing my hip), I got it done. Slower than I hoped (this is becoming a theme of my swimming this year) and the final results show pace of 2:36 per 100M.
I walked T1 and took my time. It was good practice but I probably can improve on my transitions.
I wanted to hammer the bike. There were some no passing slow zones and the course had many hairpin turns really preventing unleashing the hounds completely. No one passed me on the bike and I passed plenty. The official race results had me averaging 20.5 mph on the bike.
When I went into T2 and couldn't find my stuff. Then I realized I was one row over from where I should be and turned around. There was my stuff, duh. First time I've done that but it only cost me a few seconds. On the with sneaks and off to run. Ah, the feeling of transition runs where my legs are like concrete was there. I wish I could call that a good feeling, and in a strange way it was, but the even better feeling was when my legs started feeling like legs again after about a half mile. I wanted to take it easy for the run so to not get hurt, held it back and just kept going steady. A few twinges in my leg from time to time but I finished OK. Race results say I averaged 11:10 per mile. Garmin says a little slower but I think that's still OK for someone who really hasn't run.
When I looked at the results I started laughing since I came in second Clyde. Part of me was wondering if there were only two but there were actually more. Getting 3 Clydes on the podium made us question the weight bearing load of the podium itself but it held. Getting called up to the podium is cool. Overall this race was a success for me and I feel that I'm on the way back physically.
Everyone, enjoy your 4th!