Sunday, April 19, 2009

Lone Start Sprint Tri

The beginning of April took me down to Houston to visit family, go to Astros opening day and do a triathlon with my sister. We headed down to Galveston early Saturday morning with me, my sister, my mom and a family friend. I love driving in Houston at 5 am since there is no traffic at all. Once we got to the island it was easy to find the race site by following all of the other bikes on cars. We made it to packet pickup, got body marked and into transition just fine, although it was a little close on time. I showed Lindsay around transition area so she knew where to go. It was pretty big and could be confusing especially on your first race.

About 10 minutes before the race started (I was in the first wave) we got into our wetsuits and made our way down to the swim area.

We got into the water and it was COLD. We heard 62 degrees and it felt colder than that. Once I finally started moving my wetsuit started warming up a little. Before I knew it, it was time to go.

We were off and I was making decent progress with freestyle. I turned over to catch my breath a couple times and I noticed I was off course. I tried to correct but I was still all over the place. I finally slowed down a little and sighted a little more to get back going the right direction. I was making my way back now and mercifully made it to the last bouy. I was out of the water and on my way into transition in 13:14. Better than my last sprint, but slower than I would like because of all the extra yards I swam by going off course.

T1 went just fine. I got my wetsuit half way off on the run. It was really easy to find my bike and slipped my wet suit off. I put my shoes, helmet and GPS on and I was off. The bike was very short so I pretty much just pushed as hard as I could while leaving a little left in the tank for the run. I was passing quite a few people that killed me on the swim and that gave me a burst of energy. The wind wasn't too bad on the way out but coming back in on the sea wall there was quite a bit of crosswind. Not real bad, but I heard it got worse as the day went on (sorry sis). It was pretty fun when we got back into Moody Gardens because there were a lot of turns which made me feel like I was riding into town in the Tour de France for some reason. I finished the 12.5 mile bike in 36:22, fourth in my age group.

The next transition was super fast. I had my shoes on in no time and was off running. My legs felt pretyt good considering the hard ride.

The run was fairly flat, but there were lots of turns that messed with my stride a little. I was still moving pretty well and the miles went by without too much worry or pain. I was able to keep most of my age group competitors away but was passed by a couple. I did pass one on the last hill in the last half mile though. That felt good. I came around the final corner and could believe how many people were out there cheering us on. Pretty cool. I finished the run in 24:12 (the course was about .15 miles long) and a total time of 1:17:19. Just over my goal of 1:15. I was 11th in my age group (out of 68) and 102 over all (out of 973).

The lesson learned was to get more open water swimming in so I can cut down on the mistakes of swimming all over the place.

Lindsay started about a half hour after my wave went off so I had time to get some food, a massage and we found a good spot to watch. We saw Lindsay come in out of the bike transition and she looked good. Not too tired. I was pretty proud of her to make it through the tough swim and windy bike. We then saw her come back in on the run and cheered her in. She finished her first tri in just over 2 hours. Not too shabby for a cold swim and riding my road bike.

It was a great race and I think we have a new triathlete in the family.