This was my first race of the year. This is also my first race since I hired Jeff @ PRS Fit to help coach me. My main goals heading into the season were to become more efficient with my 8-12hrs/week training and to stay injury free. My initial goals didn’t focus on improving my times, but more on staying healthy and enjoying my training/racing.
I have been putting in 10+hr weeks on average, which is way more than I’ve ever trained before in my 10 years of racing triathlons. I was excited going into this sprint race, as I am in much better shape than ever before this early in the season. I had a hard training week leading into the race, as Wildflower olympic dist is coming up in two weeks and then Boise 70.3 in early June. Given this, coach told me to give it my all on this 0.5m swim/13m bike/4m run.
The swim was a quick 0.5m in Folsom Lake about 30min north of Sacramento. I warmed up more than ever, as I’ve been reading a lot about the benefits of increasing your HR just before the race. The water was very brisk, but at least it was warming up and in the mid 60’s at the start. I watched the wave before me and saw the best entry area and how long to run vs swim to get the best advantage. There were about 60 guys in my wave of 30-39. I ran into the water further than most and found myself in the top group of about five of us. In doing so, I didn’t have to deal with much jostling for position. The course had two buoys on the course, so I remained in that group through the first turn. I found that I was breathing every stroke, which was frustrating. On the straight away, I was focused on my breathing and feel that made me faster as well. This was my first race with my Garmin 310xt, so it kept my HR stats:
Avg HR: 148 bpm
Max HR: 167 bpm
I knew that I had a good pace, as I had a drafter hitting my toes every few strokes. I always thought that the best way to draft in the swim is just off to the side riding the wake… The other annoying thing about this race was that everyone had the same color caps. This was frustrating, as I couldn’t keep track of those around me. Once I turned the last corner, I went all out to the finish. I clocked in 13:35 on my garmin at the swim finish mat.
My T1 started off great, as I was able to strip off my wet suit down to the waist in the 250yd run into transition. Next was my first race of the year mulligan move in not having a towel and trying to put on socks. I have been doing this for 10+ years, so you could say I was a little pissed…
The bike was a 13m two loop technical course in the park. Below is the elevation profile:
I immediately started on my First Endurance liquid shot and new EFS drink. My goal was to keep my RPM’s above 80 and push hard to test my fitness. I was excited to be able to average 84RPM! I felt stronger than I ever have on the bike and continued to test that fitness. My best ever bike on this course on my previous four races was 45min. I finished the course in 41:01 and felt strong. My HR average 165 and I pushed hard whenever it dipped to mid 150’s.
T2 was fast, as I was excited with my bike finish and looking forward to running. I started off at a nice clip and was excited to push the pace. This was my first race with my Garmin using the multisport view and that really messed me up on the run. It was seemingly averaging the swim, bike and run pace, so it looked like I was averaging above 9min pace. I was passing a bunch of guys, but didn’t understand my watch. It didn’t make sense, as I have been training hard in the mid-low 7min pace. Then the steep hills hit. You couldn’t even run downhill, as it was so steep and had ruts in the trails…
The last mile I pushed hard and chased after the one guy that passed me the whole run. I finished in 1:33 and felt ok after the race. That was good enough for top ten in my age group! My legs weren’t even that heavy and I was frustrated by my perception of the run…
Back home, I was able to download the data and was pleased to see that I averaged 7:31 pace with an avg HR of 170!
My 6yr old daughter Eden loves going to races and enjoyed cheering on daddy!