June 02, 2014

Race report - Perth Triathlon (double distance)

June 1, 2014
1 km swim, 32 km bike, 6 km run 
Finish time: 2:04:03

Up at 5:00 a.m. for the drive to Perth. Guess I should get used to it, transition opens for the Ironman at around the same time. Had an instant oatmeal for breakfast, and sipped water in the car. Handy tip: if you put your oatmeal in a mug, you can kind of slurp at it while you’re driving. As the racks started to fill up, I’m not too proud to admit I was a little intimidated. It seems every Ironman athlete within 100 miles of the place showed up to race. Literally every bike on my rack (except mine) sported an Ironman race sticker. Not to mention the athletes themselves – I’ll put it this way, my friend’s wife (who just finished running the Boston marathon) exclaimed “Wow, these people are really fit – I feel lazy!” Yikes.

The pool water was tropical – thankfully they opened both doors to the pool deck to let some cool air in. My luck with wearing things for the first time on race day ran out – the tri top I chose for the day turned into a sea anchor, filling with water as soon as I got into the pool. Oh well, live and learn! I shared a lane with a very nice older gentleman named Bill. “Great!” I thought, taking note of Bill’s grey hair and slight build, “Maybe I’ll even be able to draft a bit.” Not so much, as it turned out. Bill pulled ahead by the 2nd lap and was gone. My swim was uneventful. Since all of us in the first wave started at the same time (2 per lane, 5 lanes), I felt caught up in the initial sprint and spun out a bit, which left me a little slow and tired for the middle section of the swim. This was the longest distance I’ve raced in the water to date – my last race being half as far at 500 m, and last year’s races being 200 m.
Swim split, plus T1  26:16

The bike leg was on a course open to traffic, which was thankfully light. Got into a good rhythm as the course rolled up and down. Into the second lap, I could feel the fatigue still in my legs from the ½ marathon I raced the week before. Note to self… if you’re going to truly race, a week in between is not enough time to fully recover. Nutrition/hydration on the bike was, per usual, a couple of Honey Stinger chews and a Profile HC bottle with a Nuun tablet. Slowed down my drinking toward the end of the bike, as I felt like I needed to pee – this would not make for a fast run, any way that scenario played out. And I really like my bike. I’m not going to pee on it. If you’re reading this and are not well-versed in all things long-distance tri, then I assure you this is not a joke. People pee on themselves. And their bike. I’m serious, go Google it.
Bike split  1:06:36 (personal best for this distance)

A spectator offered “At least the hard part is over,” as I hunched over in the T-zone getting my shoes changed for the run. At that point, getting my running shoes on without falling over was the hard part. Left the transition area striding out on my tired legs – quickly realizing that was not going to hold for 6 km. Immediately shortened and quickened my steps, and kept that going as best I could to the finish.
Run split  31:12 (personal best for this distance)

All in all, I’m happy with my effort on the day. I got a taste of just how fast some of these more experienced distance triathletes are. And the older gentleman who smoked me in the pool? Turns out he’s a multiple Ironman finisher. My hat’s off to you, Bill! 

No comments:

Post a Comment