Detroit Lakes - YoungLife Sprint Triathlon
Jill and I before the race.
(It was windy)
The last couple of weeks leading up to the YoungLife Triathlon were filled with mixed thoughts and feelings. I had just spent almost a week in NYC and came back with no real desire to train for this event. I kept up with my workouts, few and far between, but I just wasn't feeling it.
This was going to be my 2nd triathlon of 2009 and last one of the season. I knew I had to change my attitude and have fun. By the time this weekend hit, and with some positive comments and encouragement from friend and fellow bloggers, I was really starting to look forward to the trip to Detroit Lakes.
The Day Before:
It was decided that we would drive to DL the morning of, rather than spending $100+ on a hotel room Friday night. Everything was packed up Friday afternoon and we packed our friend's van that evening. We were ready to roll and all I needed was a good night's rest. However, I was worried that the thunderstorms rolling in around at 9pm, mixed with the usual pre-race nerves, were going to keep me awake. That was not the case. There were no nervous feelings when the head hit the pillow that night. I slept like a rock.
What did Wes say? "What you are is a veteran now... save the excitement for the morning the race."
And that is just what I did.
After a 430am wake-up, we were on the road at about 515am and to DL by 615. Was I nervous on the drive down? No. But, as soon as we pulled into the City Park area, and I saw the size of the transition area and a half a dozen hard core triathletes, I was starting to get the nervous bug. I even made the comment, "If I don't enjoy this race, I will seriously question if I ever do one of these again." Probably a little extreme and not the best attitude going into a race, but that's how I felt. However, not for long.
We took our time setting up our transition area. There were things I remembered to do from the last triathlon, as well as things I wanted to do differently. You know, it's a learning experience, and if I was happy about anything I was glad to be doing another triathlon this summer for that reason.
630am they started doing body marking. I was not impressed with my body marking, and when I asked for the smiley face on the back of my calf, the girl did a horrible job. Not a big deal, however, it was now that I was getting really excited.
By this point I had eaten half a banana and part of a peanut butter sandwhich. At 730 I took my Chocolate Outrage Gu (yum yum), and drank a lot of water. A bathroom break before the race was taken at this point, but looking back now, I think I drank way to much water this morning!
This event was broken into heats, depending on male female, two age groups (29 and under, 30 and older) and whether or not you were doing the Sprint or the Olympic.
500M - out and back
The water was very shallow and at almost any point in the swim you could touch the bottom. The sun was starting to peak from behind the clouds, but it didn't last for too long. There were a few waves on the lake, but nothing horrible. To be honest, I was expecting worse, considering there were white caps last year. As I turned around the bouy I got splashed by a wave and it caught me off guard, but didn't slow me down.
In comparison to July's Prairie Rose Triathlon - 1000M - 31:00 - 3:06/100M - definitely an improvement!
Looking back at my tri in July and comparing the swim to this one, I was very impressed. Yes, it was half the distance, but I felt so much stronger on the swim this time around. Maybe it was because I kind of knew what to expect this time around. Maybe it was due to all the swim team practices I participated in.
I felt super pokey during this transition and kept telling myself to hurry up. I don't know what took me so long. I had my tri suit on. All I had to do was throw on my socks, shoes, helmet, gloves, and grab my gu. I struggled with my socks as water kept running down my legs and kept my feet wet. Does anyone have any solutions to this? I think this is what slowed me down the most!
The brochure said it was going to be a 10 mile loop around the lake, but they had to add a little bit on for some reason or another. I was okay with that.
I hopped on my bike as I crossed the mat and felt strong. I held back on the bike a bit last time and wanted to put more into it this time around. The course was pretty flat, with an occasional rolling hill here and there. During the first 2-6 miles, my bike kept making a sound like it was shifting gears and every time I looked down, it was still on the middle spoke in the back. I was afraid to shift gears after that, but then it was fine for the 2nd half of the ride.
The temperature was in the low 70's but I could tell the humidity was pretty high. The sun was no longer present and the wind was starting to pick up. By the time I finished the bike, the wind was getting pretty bad and it was starting to sprinkle.
However, I just could not get my heart rate down. I didn't wear my heart rate monitor, but I knew it was high. I felt like I was breathing so heavy and at times I wasn't even going very fast. Any ideas on what would I would have needed to do to help bring my heart rate down?
At about the 8.5 mile marker, I took in another gu, TriBerry. This was before I remembered that the race course was going to be longer than 10 miles. I had also finished 1 of my 20oz bottles of water.
In comparison to July's Prairie Rose Triathlon - 12.4M - 52:40 - 14.13mph- definitely an improvement! I wanted to break the 15mph average and that is just what I did!
I had to walk/run my bike quite a long ways to get through transition, and that is pretty hard uncomfortable given I was wearing my clipless shoes. This transition did go a bit smoother. I kicked off my cycling shoes, grabbed my running shoes, lost the helmet and glove, and threw on my visor while running out of transition. It still could have been faster, but I'll take it.
Oh boy, where do I start? I didn't realize this until after the race, but a good portion of the run included the grassy area I spent a lot of time walking though. Looking back now, I remember that the timing mat was before that, not after. Oops.
At this point the wind had really picked up and it was starting to sprinkle. I am sure the temperature had dropped a few degrees but it felt good to me. My face was overheating and I knew I needed to cool off a bit. The route was a flat out and back.
Run, walk, run, walk, run, walk. This seemed to be the pattern here. The transition from the bike wasn't horrible, but my right knee wasn't great either. It wasn't bad, but it felt uncomfortable. Add on the fact that I was having this side stitch feeling in the middle of my back every time I took deep breathes, and the fact that I had to go potty really bad and I struggled imensely through this run.
It was starting to rain about 1/4 of a mile in and by the time I reached the turn-around point, it was pouring. I have never run in rain, let alone rain like that, and I must admit I kind of liked it! However, it didn't help the fact that I still had to use the bathroom, but I refused to use the port-a-potty. I didn't want to mess with my drenched wet suit in a dark port-a-potty. I couldn't afford to lose anymore time on my run. Looking back now, choosing to not take a bathroom break was probably my worst decision.
I still grumble when I think of this run. It just irritates me to no end.
In comparison to July's Prairie Rose Triathlon - 3.1 miles - 34:00 (approximately) - 10:58/mi- not as good! GRR. However, I believe that the last tri 5K was shorter than they said it was, but there's nothing I can do about that.
Given all the ups and downs before and during the race, I look back and can still say that I was very happy I did this race and look forward to doing it again next year. It was organized really well.
We had our wonderful Sherpa in tow, wearing his Sherpa shirt that we made for him personally. Unfortunately, due to the weather conditions, we didn't get as many pictures as last time. But, he was still a great sport and supporter. Plus, I think he secretly really enjoys his roll as Sherpa!
We didn't stick around for awards afterwards. It was going to be a while to wait for them, and I am pretty sure I didn't win anything. It started to down pour again and we wanted to get out of our wet clothes. Plus, we were excited to do grab beer and pizza at one of the best pizza places in the lakes area.... Zorbaz!
One of the things that I really want to remember for next time is where to set up transition. When I went in before the race I was overwhelmed with all the racks and couldn't remember what I needed to remember when it comes to transition areas. But, looking back, I would like to think it would be smarter to set up transition closer to the bike entrance. This way, I wouldn't have to run/walk as far with my clipless shoes on. That is not very fun or comfortable.
I would also like take better note of where I am coming in and going out for each transition, as well as where the timing mats are placed. We walked through prior to race, but it was so overwhelming and I guess I didn't take it all in!
Overall, I am not very sore today. Good thing. My neck and shoulders are a bit tight, as well as my right calf but for all given reasons. I was riding with my shoulders pretty high during the bike, and I am sure my calf was overcompensating for my knee on the run. I did do a lot of stretching, yoga moves, and foam rolling yesterday afternoon. I should have iced my knee but I just wasn't thinking clearly. I need to get a massage in this week. I meant to call and schedule one last week for tomorrow, but kept putting it off and forgetting. Now I am kicking myself in the butt for that!
Here's the official resuts from the race website:
bib number: 355
location: Fargo, ND
overall place: 189 out of 215
division place: 34 out of 41
gender place: 89 out of 111
The next post will consist of some revisions and more thoughts I have on training and what-not. I was going to post that in this post, but I am afraid I have gotten rather lengthly on this race post as it is. Thanks again for all of your support, encouragement and well wishes! I couldn't have done this without all of you out there!