Monday, June 9, 2008

San Jose International Triathlon

I’m not sure what to write about this race. It was the best of events and it was the worst of events.

I felt good going into it – rested, recovered and ready to race (the 3 Rs). I heard it was pretty darn flat and fast with 1 hill. With that in mind my goal was to improve on my previous race swim time, hit the bike in 1 hour or less and run the 10k in sub-40.

The swim started good, I started at the front and then I went too hard, got whacked, kicked and too darn excited. I slowed up, gathered it in (I swear I was near full panic and not catching my breath – always fun in the water) and swam. I simply don’t push it. I focused on ‘thinking kayak’ as Ben would say, my reach and swimming straight. I did those things but just not very quickly. Overall rating 1.5 stars for this swim. Giving myself 1 star for just showing up.

Exiting the water I was ready for a fast T1 and to get out on the bike. As always my transitions go pretty quickly and I was out on the course. Overall rating 3.5 stars for T1. I still need to get my wetsuit off faster and I struggled with the arms- they’re getting harder to get off each time I wear it!

I left my Garmin Edge 305 at home, so I just raced by HR (just knowing my speed helps with motivation) – with a plan on rolling up from 162-up to my race pace of about 176. That worked great – though one guy passed me and I had to get to 176 a bit sooner because I HATE BEING PASSED (on the bike). I held pace and just wove in and out of the crowd in front of me like a possessed granny at a needle point convention. I rode everywhere from the breakdown lane to the oncoming traffic lane (hoping for none of the officials were behind me). I rode a solid hill and felt good – taking about 2 dozen folks down in a ½ mile or less. I got passed by one other guy who I let go during a mid-race ‘bad patch’ with a total of 2 guys getting me in 25 miles. Towards the end I saw a guy nail a kid on a scooter (the kid was playing in the road with no supervision) – not pretty and with 2 kids of my own, I was slightly distracted by the sight of it. The last few miles were bumpy but I got through them about 2.75 mins off my goal. Overall rating 3.5 stars for this bike. I felt good, pushed myself and rode a good hill. The ‘bad patch’ and loss of motivation towards the ends were misses. Plus I could have taken in 6 oz more of water.

I leapt off my steed with great finesse (note: I strive to 1) get cheers 2) get some sort of ‘wow’ factor out of the folks at the line) and I got a few ‘wows’ out of folks as I hit the line going about 12mph. I even caught a guy going into T2. Overall rating 4 stars for T1. I could have got my shoes on faster. I probably passed 6-10 folks just running into my rack.

The run started rough. My glutes were so cramped that I couldn’t run, I hobbled, it hurt. It took about 2 mins of hobbling before they relaxed and I could run. Then I felt great. I was easily running sub 7 for mile one (by sub I mean 6:56) and was increasing speed over the next half mile to hit my goal of 40mins. My HR shot to 185 which was about right – by the time I hit mile 2 my HR had hit 199 and with every little increase in tempo I tried it spiked into the 200s with a max of 226. I ran at 205 for a bit and then by mile 4 it didn’t feel good and I began to think about having to work on Monday and having a family that needed me NOT in a hospital – so I pulled back and shuffled in for the final 2 miles having to give up my goal but it’s a race and my finish time is not what matters most at the end of the day. Overall rating 3 stars for this run. The legs felt great one the cramps subsided and I was on it for a good race, it’s getting there but I think I probably got behind on hydration and maybe a gel. So close. Again, 1 star for showing up.


Ian said...

That's a solid race---you did well! You forgot to give yourself a star for actually finding the start this year.

Sarah said...

I think you're too hard on yourself. Did you have fun? If you did, then you need a star for that. Gold star!! (As a kid, getting a gold star sticker meant EVERYTHING)

Wish I could've raced w/you guys and I was cheering you on from my ride Sunday morning.

At least you're an equal opportunity hater when it comes to getting passed on the bike. I rode with a guy on Sunday morning who clearly seemed to have an issue riding with a woman who passed him at times. It really pissed me off.

Anyway, I still think you did a good job. You get a gold star for that, too.

Kelly said...

ooh i forgot to give myself stars.

good job!

Anonymous said...

I am just glad you didnt catch me.

Loren Pokorny said...

But I did. Just beacause you walked the run - it doesn't count.

Courtenay said...

this is why i don't use a hr monitor in a race.
good job. i am going to have to sneak some fins in the water to keep up with you at tinley's.

Anonymous said...

Hey Loren, not a bad day all in all. Some lessons learned, and a bunch of positives to take away from the experience. That is crazy/awful about the kid on the scooter. Hope everyone is ok.

(I give myself three stars for this comment - concise and balanced, but a little too cliched)

Anonymous said...

Oh, and I totally got the Charles Dickens' "Tale of Two Cities" reference.

Chris Westall said...

Solid Race... Thanks for trying the swim in front I'm still going to give it a shot in my next race. But I'll cheer you on in the water when we race together :-)

Oh... and I like the star rating. Is it out of 5 stars? I'd like to see the final tally at the end though. 17 of 25 sort of thing.