Waldo Sprint Triathlon 3/7/10 Race Report
I was a little depressed at first going to this event because my family wouldn’t be there to cheer for me. My wife Summer and I just received a new calling in our church which requires one of us to teach every Sunday so she stayed in Apopka with the kids. I hadn’t been getting very good sleep the past two days since I was debating on whether or not to attend the Biggest Loser Casting call in Tampa. Eventually I decided to not attend the casting call since I had already sent a tape in and it would screw up my timing with my race. My weight loss and health is a marathon, a process, which might take years, and pipe dreams of a cool weight loss reality show may not help that.
So I drove up to Gainesville. Made a stop to pick up some GU Tri-berry like I like and also picked up a running hat and something to wear before the race since there was a FREEZE alert for all of Alachua County. That made for wonderful thoughts about the upcoming swim! I got dinner at Texas Roadhouse to go, ate light, and took 3 Advil PM to make sure I got my sleep. I feel asleep at like 8:30 pm watching a really cool HBO sports documentary about Magic and Bird. I woke up at 4:45 am. I was disoriented at first but I realized where I was. I dreamt about playing High School football again and my coach was Bill Clinton, go figure. It was a long vivid dream too. I felt like I was sleeping in when I got out of bed at 7:00 am. That meant 11 hours of sleep which made up for past two nights of 5 hours of sleep.
I was greeted at my car to a completely frosted windshield. The temp said 34 degrees on instrument panel. Took a minute to defrost and I drove the 30 minutes to Waldo. On my arrival, there were a lot of people riding their tri-bikes, getting warmed up. Thankfully, the start time was 9:00 am. Good thing or we all would have frozen to death! I checked in and asked what the water temp was…. The answer I got was a balmy 60 degrees! Wonderful! My previous lake swim at Lucky’s was at 64 degrees so I knew what I was up against. I had a secret weapon though, my Blue Seventy neoprene swim cap! I loaded the transition area with all of my crap, and started to put my wetsuit on. I couldn’t get it zipped! I had to ask my neighbor in the Transition area to help me out and she did. Triathletes are so nice! I put my caps on and made my way down to the water. I got in immediately; I knew that if I didn’t get in right away I would get the shock of the cold water and start to freak out slowing me down. I did a few little laps and put my face in and blew bubbles. I wasn’t that bad! My arms and feet went numb but my head was warm. I stayed in the water until the start. It was a waist deep start.
The Swim 750M
The countdown ended and off we went! I had positioned myself on the left hand side towards the back and I let a lot of people go in front of me since I knew that most were going to swim faster then I. I was surprised at how easy and calm I was during the swim. There was some bumping and kicking going on too. It was kind of fun! This was the first real mass swim start in my short racing career. I stopped at each one and in retrospect should have just kept going at each one. They kept occurring until the third buoy. The course was a large triangle with three buoys in the straight away. My time in the water was 18:16 which meant about 2:03/per 100 swam. A new PR, pretty fast, the time seemed like it took forever. Since I had my wetsuit I was able to use my HR monitor belt so I was able to see for once what my HR is on my swim. The average HR was around 148 bpm and 154 was the max. Not bad I guess. Don’t really have a benchmark but when I count my HR at the pool it is around 132 or so. This swim really makes me excited to go back to the Lucky’s Lake Swim and get better at the Open water thing. I really enjoyed it even though it was freezing!
Once out of the water you had to run out and into transition which was a little run. They did the timing all by hand by giving your number to volunteers as you entered and exited transition. Hardly scientific. I should have stripped the wetsuit while I was doing the run up but I didn’t think of that. It took me about 5 minutes get the suit off and to do the sock, sock, shoe, shoe, glasses, helmet, go! Got on the bike and headed out.
The Bike 20K
The bike was an out and back on the rural roads of Waldo Florida. The terrain was mostly rough black top with gentle rolling hills that were deceiving as I drove them the day before the race. I envisioned myself challenging one of my goals for the season which was to stay at 17 mph for the bike leg of a race. I ended up at 16.2 mph which is a new PR for that distance. I stayed in the big ring and switched between the middle three gears in the back ring for most of the ride. I tried to get Aero for as much as I could but I worried about hydration for the run so I sat more then I wanted to. Plus my HR was spiking after T1 and I wanted to calm it down. It came down but stayed around 158 or so for the duration of the bike. Which reminds me, I’m going to change my limits on my Polar HR monitor for race day, and it drove me nuts all day since I kept it from my base training. Going to put it up to 170 or so for races from now on; other than that the ride was uneventful. I saw a girl cheat at the turn around and cut the bike short by a quarter mile. I didn’t see her number or I would have reported her. I don’t generally mind cutting corners but not in a race. What’s the point? Why race? I motored in on the bike and thought that I had beat my goal of 45 minutes. I was actually short by about a minute. Bike leg was 46:09.
T2 was inconsequential. I dumped the bike put the running shoes and hat on and headed out. You had to run back to the lake and then back to transition then head out to the course for the 5k run.
The Run 5K
My plan was run 8 min take 2 min off for the run leg. But I thought in the back of my head, if I felt good I would keep running tackling another goal I set for this season which was to run the whole run leg of one race. Out of transition the HR was spiking again. I couldn’t do more than 5 minutes before walking for two. I never walked for more than two minutes the whole run. I think I walked 4 times. After you passed transition you ran a square in a park which was cross country type running. I didn’t like that at all. I hadn’t trained for it and wasn’t prepared for it. I was going fast but my HR spiked again. I lasted 6 min before walking. Finally I got out into the roads where you would run into a neighborhood and then back to the finish. The run in the neighborhood was great. I got some water took a GU gel and made up some time I think. I made my way back to the park almost done. For some reason I thought I had to run to the lake again to get to the finish so I stopped and walked again like 200 yards from the finish! Stupid! I ran in and finished 1:53:46. My goal was to beat 2:00 and I demolished it! I just wished I had run the rest of the way! My run time was 40:43 and I would have beat 40 minutes easy if I hadn’t had stopped. I didn’t even sprint the finish. A little disappointing but not really, I’m proud of myself.
I improved so much. My swim time was a revelation. Slow but better and the cold water really had me worried. People drown in lakes you know. The bike was good. I look back at my rides and none of them are in the 16 mph range. So that’s better too! And the run was awesome! Ran harder than I thought I could, and I know I could have run harder. Today the day after, my quads are killing me and my calves are shredded too. Need to do some more movement prep and hit the not foam roller. Next race up is the Super Sprint tri in Clermont at Lake Louisa in April. Should be super-fast.