Saturday, July 25, 2009

Federal Way Escape Triathlon


Another typical night of sleep, I woke up a few times. It was good to get an extra hour of sleep compared to Seafair the weekend before. My legs felt a little tired, but I figured all things would feel better later.

I met up with Lee & Karen and we were on our way just before 5am. After a quick stop at Starbucks, I realized I forgot my watch. No big Deal, Karen is always super prepared. I don't use it for racing, but it is always good to have for the warmup.

We arrived at Five Mile Lake just before 5:30. There were a few people there. We set up our transition areas. I headed out for a bike warmup. I decided two loops would get my legs ready to ride hard for the race. I re-racked my bike and headed out for short run. Once my warmup was complete, I made sure everything was in the right spot.

I had a friend tell me that we did not get out of the water for the swim. I was super excited until the race briefing. It was like Ironman CDA. A quick run in sand around a sign then back in.

This race is a little short of a true Olympic Distance race (1500m, 23.32mile, 5.86). My goal for the race was 22:00, 59:00, 36:00 + transitions equalling a 2:01.00.

It was a 2 loop course. The water felt like it was in the low 70's. There were only 2 waves, men then women. During the first part of the swim, I saw a few people in front of me. I wanted to build to the first buoy then settle into a pace. My plan worked for a bit, but I felt like I only had 1 gear. I hit land and quickly ran around the sign. I looked back and saw Lee coming out. It seemed like he was having a great race. I tried to dive in for a graceful re-entry. It was more of a flop. I tried to stay with the guy right in front of me, but I just couldn't go any faster. After the second buoy, I see someone creeping up on me to the right. I had to do a double take. It was Lee!!! I tried to move into his draft stream. I couldn't even respond. The only thing I can tell you is that the McCurley Clan crushed me on the swim. I don't make excuses. I looked at my wetsuit later and noticed a big hole. I need to get this repaired before my next race. Swim-24:11 I wonder if the swim was a little long... Did we really need to get out of the water? Why did the sprint racers have a smaller loop?

The bike course had lots of turns and a few small rollers.

I ran up the beach and quickly transitioned to be just ahead of Lee out of the water. I wanted to build the first lap then settle into a strong pace. Lee passed me before the first turn. I was definitely glad to ride the course. Before I finished the first loop I notice a few riders ahead of me turning. I was actually confused. I knew we were supposed to stay straight. I wonder how many took that turn??? Was Lee part of that group??? Any bets???

Yes, he had a police officer tell him to turn left. Then the cop changed his mind. It was a little bit of bad luck. Would I be unlucky later???

I didn't know this until halfway thru the second loop, when he came up next to me saying something in Korean. My translation, "I want bacon for lunch."

Lee & I rode together trading pulls for the rest of the ride. We did it legally, no cheating for us.

We came into transition 1-2. 58:43, 2nd fastest bike split to Crowieto.

I thought the run course was flat. There were actually a few rollers.

I racked my bike, put on my Newtons, and headed out. I knew Lee was right behind me, so I tried to get comfortable for the first couple miles then press on the second loop. I had a stitch on my right side for the first mile. I was able to work through it. I ran up to the first water station and saw the volunteers jumping out of the car. I like to run with a bottle, so none for me. I hit the undulating part of the run. I turned onto Military road. As I neared the park, I saw a volunteer. I thought I was supposed to run back thru the park. She wasn't sure. They weren't ready for me. I had to wait a few seconds. She told me no, so I continued on. I started to pick up the pace on the second loop. I thought I heard foot steps, but I guess it was my brain messing with me. I kept pressing as I entered the park. I saw Karen and told her to keep it up as I was asking which way to the finish line.

I ended up winning the race by almost 4 minutes. If you subtract out the part I was supposed to run it was probably 2 minutes. The race director acknowledged the mix up, but admitted that it would not have mattered. It would've been an interesting race, if Crowieto did not go off course. He finished 2nd in his age group and 4th overall. This was my first win. It was a Team Bear Naked sweep. Karen was the top female. It looked like she was pretty excited.

After the race, we chilled for a bit and headed to Seattle for the Torchlight 8k Run. It was humid. I was going to run super easy, but I got so bored that I couldn't take it anymore. My last 2 miles were 12:20.

My next race will be Lake Stevens. Time to get some miles under my legs.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

It's gonna be a hot one this weekend

I was surprised my swim felt good with no real soreness from the race.

I had a really strong bike at a nice aerobic pace (22.2mph avg for 52 miles). I ran ez off the bike just to flush the legs.

My legs were a little heavy during the swim. It only took 3500 to finally get to a strong pace. I ran for an hour in the heat and felt very good.

I went for a nice ez bike with a few repeats just to get my legs pumping.

It's gonna be hot this weekend. Drink, Drink, Drink!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Seafair Sprint Triathlon

Saturday morning I went through my pre-race workouts. Karen, Lee and I went up to Seattle to pick up our race packet. As always traffic seems to be a key theme when trying to go either north or south from Lakewood. We picked up our packets and looked around the expo. I decided to switch into the elite wave. Lee liked the idea and did the same. Especially since they were willing to give him his favorite number 51. I went back to look at the start list and saw a lot of fast names. I decided to switch back to age group. The real question would be, "Would I regret it?"

Afterward we went to Speedy Reedy to pick up a few items and off to lunch for some Thai food.

I usually don't sleep well the night before any race. My brain is working overtime. I got a great night of sleep. I woke up just before my alarm 3:35am. Woo Hoo!!! I ate breakfast, cleaned up, and headed out the door.

The highlight of the drive up was seeing 6 cop cars with guns drawn and a person on their knees with their hands in the air.

We arrived at the race site at 5:15am. We parked about 200 meters away. I definitely recommend getting there early. Especially since I heard there were 2000 athletes registered.

It makes transitions so much faster when you are the first one to the rack. I set everything up and headed out for a bike. I decided to ride most of the course since this was my first time doing the race. I was surprised to see that we ride up the same short steep hill that we ran for Seattle Rock n' Roll Half. I felt like there was a lot of cross wind on Lake Washington and I-90. I racked my bike and headed out for a quick short run since time was running out. I grabbed the wetsuit and headed to the water.

My goal for the race was to be under 1:03(11:00 swim, 30:.30 bike, 19:00 run). This is me with my serious face. Some call this Funstomper!!!

My wave started fourth. I felt strong in my Xterra Vendetta. A few people started with me. I dropped them before the first turn. I start to catch several of the swimmers in the earlier heat. At one point I felt my hand on some one's butt. Needless to say, don't do crack!!! Once I reached the shore I stood up and started running (maybe a little bit early). 11:07.

I was in T-1 for just over a minute. I was glad to cut 2 inches off the legs. The wetsuit came right off. I grabbed the bike and headed out. I went to put my left foot in the shoe while on the bike and pulled the strap out. Two races in a row. I am getting pretty good at a refeeding the strap back through. I need to stop pulling so hard! I passed a lot of people. At times it was frustrating because some riders thought they owned the entire lane. I loved the guys who tried to catch a draft off me. It was entertaining. I passed Karen with just over a mile to go. 30:33.

I was in T-2 for less than a minute. I racked my bike, put my Newtons on, grabbed my race number, and was off. Right before we started the swim Karen mentioned there was a hill on the run. I thought no big deal. Right? I felt good on the run until I got to the hill. I understand the concept of a relatively flat course. It means there will be a little up and down. This was a lot up. Once I crested, I was able to get back into a rhythm after a bit. I came flying down the hill and knew there was less than a mile to go. I pushed hard all the way to the end. 18:52.

I achieved my goal. 1:02.36. I won my age group and placed 8th overall. The race felt much better than Blue Lake last month. It almost felt too easy. I know I can sustain this pace for an Olympic Tri. I'll have to wait and see. Next time I will stay in the elite wave, less chaos (goonie-goo-goos to pass). Great job to Karen (1st in her age group) and Lee (16th overall).

Here we are standing with our team sponsor.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Catching up

I had a solid training week last week.

I went up to Lake Stevens on Saturday with Lee & Karen. We rode the course. I was race support last year (I was fired because I got drunks the night of the race). The course is somewhat challenging. You have to ride smart on the hills. I definitely think if you push the hills, your legs will return the favor on the run. Crowieto thinks his bike time (2:37.02) will stand from last year. I don't think so, especially since we rode it as a training ride in 2:38. I almost forgot he is a runner now, so it might be true for him.

Monday - I had a nice easy swim at the pool. Legs were sore from the hilly bike and strong run over the weekend.

Tuesday - I rode a little over 50. Legs feel better, almost recovered.

Today - I had a great swim this morning. I can't believe I am swimming faster than ever. I also had a strong 1 hour run with a few mile repeats. I ran a PR in practice. I am ready to kick the feet up and relax.

I am looking forward to the race this weekend!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

End of a long week...

I ran for a little over hour this morning. I actually felt pretty good. My sophmoron buddy (SB) decided he would run at my pace. I gotta say it is nice to have someone to run with. The dogs really don't talk much. The only problem is SB doesn't know how to pace himself. Especially since SB recently finished an ironman. I personally like to start at a comfortable pace and pick it up after 3-4 miles. SB likes to run at any pace that is slightly faster than my current pace. SB has already extrapolated that our run times will intersect in March 2010.

We did a short 3 mile loop because his dogs are into biting people more than running. We were about 400m away from the house to drop the dogs off. SB decides to pick up the pace for 200m then stop. I laugh on the inside because I have 7 miles to go and know SB wouldn't be able to keep up.

The battles will begin to heat up for the next 20 weeks.

The plan for rest of the day is a nap and chillin.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July!!!

My focus for the week was to recover from the run and build my bike & swim workouts.

Monday - I had a good easy swim.

Tuesday - I felt better than I thought I would on the bike.

Wednesday - My swim was OK. The bike workouts make the legs a little heavy. I asked one of my pro friends about it. He said they call it training. I had a nice run in the evening. It was a little hot. I think Fina was super excited. She kept barking at me to chase her. Yeah right.

I also said goodbye to my 4th favorite canine, Indy and Bi33y. She is an amazing person and athlete. We will miss her. I think there is a good chance we will see them soon or when Josh gets restationed here.

Thursday - The bike workout went well. I flatted on one of the repeats. It is so much fun to change a flat when sweat is running into your eyes.

Friday - I had a good run early in the morning. I swam outside at Titlow Pool. You can't beat a swimmer's tan! It was also my first workout in a 50m pool. I like walls. A lot! The workout felt good through the first half. After that I started toward muscle failure. The last three repeats. I had trouble breaking out off the turn. I think it was a combination of hard bike last night and running before the swim.

Today - My legs felt tired from the start. The crazy thing is I was still riding at a good pace. The workouts during the week are paying off. I am going to relax for the rest of the day.

Tomorrow - In the morning, I have a run just over an hour. I may ride easy in the afternoon.