Triathlon Results – Not Bad for a New Guy

Well that wasn’t so hard, now was it?  I mean showing up at the Triathlon and signing in – the event seemed very well organized.  The actual work though, well, that was tough.  But not too tough.  Here are the numbers and then I’ll lay out some details,

Overall Time 1:48:50.92
Overall Place 185/240
Rank in Age Group 11/16

Specific details such as leg times and ranks are found in the overall results.  Not much of note there other than that my swim time was quite good overall.

The overall results compare me to everyone, which might be a little unfair in some people’s eyes. Thankfully the race results for my age range (M3539) are available too.  So the details ….

I found the swim to be the most frustrating part of the race.  We lined up according to expected finish time so I was with a girl who was about my pace the whole time.  The race rules are such that if you want to pass someone you tap them on the foot near the end of the pool.  Because the two of us were so close in speed we ended up passing each other a couple of times, which really just slowed us both down.  This was particularly bad when others were passing at the ends of the pool as there ended up being a lineup of sorts at the ends of some lanes.  It was also the first time I’d swum in 50m lanes which kind of took me by surprise – just something new that I hadn’t practised.  Overall I had trouble getting into my swim groove, which made for a choppy and frustrating swim.  Such is the reality of “race day” I suppose.

The run from the pool to the cycle transition point was weird.  I stepped into the men’s change tent and found some people completely changing.  I hadn’t expected that.  It felt much like a change room at a pool – very relaxed.  I was a bit puzzled because I literally threw on my crocs and fleece and ran out the door.  Even along the run path between the pool and the cycle area I passed someone leisurely walking – which surprised me.  I started to worry – am I going too hard out of the gate?  Meh, it is 300m – I ran on.

The cycle itself was actually really nice.  There were very few spectators around – far fewer than any of the running races I’ve spectated at when Alisa was running.  Not including the bunch of supportive rowdies that showed up to cheer me on – they made the course feel positively packed with supporters.  But it made for a nice quiet course – so quiet I could hear the dry leaves scraping across the ground as I pushed through the wind.  It was a bit windy, but not terribly so.  I chatted with at least one rider casually and posed for photos whenever I passed my family, so apparently I wasn’t too winded or anything.

The transition to running took a bit longer than anticipated, as I did a lot of changing.  The weather was so nice I decided to take my fleece off under my waterproof jacket which meant taking off most of my clothes.  But the transition area was quiet and not busy at all, so no need to watch my elbows as I shrugged off my clothes.

The run was probably the hardest part, but not because I had no legs.  Right after the turn-around point I started to get a cramp right in the gut.  Maybe it was the water I drank at that point, or maybe too much talking with the volunteers – who can say.  But for the entire next km I was fighting the cramp.  I slowed down to focus on my breathing and was struggling to just keep running.  Must.  Not.  Walk.  Eventually I sucked down enough oxygen to get rid of the cramp around 4km, so finished the race with a good spring in my step.  High fives to my awesome family at the finish line and I was done.  I wasn’t nearly as serious as the finish line pictures seem to show.

So how do I feel about it all?  Well my swim time was a bit slower than I had thought, but I think I know why.  My cycle time was actually a bit quicker than my goal.  The run was right about what I expected, which isn’t bad considering I spent 1/5 of the course fighting a nasty cramp.

Will I do another one?  I’m torn.  I really enjoy the sport, but I’m not yet sold on the race.  I’m planning to start training for a full Olympic distance race that Alisa wants to run with me.  I’m thinking I’ll commit to that, then evaluate whether or not I want to make races part of my regular training.  I like how they set goals for you, but if it is supposed to be fun then the frustrating parts should be avoided.

A great big thank you to everyone that cheered me on, both in person and virtually.  I’m happy with my results, enjoyed the day itself, and am planning on continuing to push myself – thumbs up all around!

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