First Race Down–Tritonman Race Report

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About the Race:
This is a small triathlon mainly to help support UCSD Triathlon so I didn’t have any high expectations of a high profile race.   It was actually kind of nice to and do a small triathlon while supporting UCSD Triathlon.  Didn’t have to worry about bibs, stickers all over the bike or helmet, just show up and race.  Most sprint distances cut the swim to a 500M swim but this was a 750M Swim.  The bike consisted of 3 loops around Fiesta Island.  The run consisted of 3 loops around the park path with the final turn into the finish line.  No big finishing shoot with a carpet, no huge crowds, just the timing line, short sweet and to the point.   Most of the competitors were college kids with a few of us old timers out there showing them that you can still do it regardless.

Race Expectations:
I didn’t have any high expectations for this race.  It was about pacing and not pushing too much.  I also didn’t use any of my usual training gear, no Garmin 910XT, no HR strap, no foot pod, and no speed/cadence sensor.  I wanted to simulate something happening to my Garmin and having to race completely blind and go off nothing but feelings.  Looking back I wonder if it was the smartest thing cause it was a race!  Well the reason I signed up is because it was a race and I was hoping for water temps that should be like Oceanside 70.3 along with weather.   Since this was not an A race it was a preparation race and while it didn’t have the same flair as some of the bigger race the energy amongst the racers was just as high and I had just the same butterflies in the stomach up to the start.

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Race Day:
I had a work call wake me up at 2AM which didn’t help matters and it lasted for 2.5 hours so I just went straight to getting my pre-race protein shake /carbs and got everything ready to head over to the venue.  It was foggy and it was cold, but it’s the end of February so I expected it to be cold.  Thankfully they gave us some beanies as part of the swag cause I used it all the way up to entering the water.  I got everything setup really nice in my transition which I’m sure paid off with my T’times but I won’t know till the results are posted.  Walked down to the bay fully expecting the water to be utterly freezing but it wasn’t bad at all, in fact I was relieved that it was not cold.  Got a good warm up swim and tried to remember to reach for the corners of the pool to assist with my stroke during the warm up (this will take some work).

Swim:
As the Male AG’s lined up we were off, even with the jelly fish around us.  Stayed to the outside of things and worked my way to the inside just passing people left and right and couldn’t find any feet to draft off of.  Thought I had a few but I quickly eclipsed them as we got father from the start.  Even around the first turn it was bunched to no end and thankfully I didn’t get caught in that washing machine and made a mad dash to the final left.  I didn’t sprint the last 200M or so like I usually would have, I had to remember to keep a constant pace.  I think I got a sub 12 minute 750M but who knows.

Bike:
My transition went pretty smooth and I even mounted the bike in a pretty good fashion.  Since this was around Fiesta Island I figured there would be a huge headwind on the backside of the island like usual, but NO WIND!   At this point my feet were back to normal and I must have been pushing 22-23 MPH who knows except I know I was passing people left and right and only had a few college kids pass me on their super duper fast bikes.  the only real issue here was the people on bikes who failed to stay to the right if they are going slow.   The slowing down aspect of people who can’t follow simple instructions really annoyed me and another guy behind me who was yelling as well.  My dismount was good as ever except I have a feeling I took too much time getting out of my shoes moving up to the dismount line.  So don’t know the time at all but maybe a 30 minute bike.

Run:
Rushed T2 a bike and my feet were frozen and number again from the cold wet grass so putting on the shoes was a hassle.  This run was going to be interesting cause I would have no idea of how fast I was going.  I think I maintained a 9:30-10:00 mile pace but it was hard to tell when you can’t feel your feet.  I kept seeing a bunch of people passing me but who know what lap they were on and I kept telling myself to keep my race pace, I’m not here for a podium finish.  Through most of the run I felt great although my quads were starting to get a bit sore at this point (I didn’t do anything for nutrition) I had a salt stick on the bike but I think I should have popped 1 right as I got on the bike and another coming off the bike.  The 3rd lap was getting boring at this time but I picked it up going into the final shoot and saw the gun time of 1:23 so my total finish time should be around 1:13-1:15.  I’m pretty happy with that, although it was hard to keep telling myself to go at an even pace that I would at Oceanside.

Takeaways:
1. I need to put rubber bands in my transition bag.  I keep forgetting them for my shoes.
2. Sunglasses, I need to make sure they stay in my pockets.  They fell out and I lost them.
3. Practice sighting with my strokes.  Since adjusting my stroke from SwimLabs assessment I need to practice sighting.
4. Salt Sticks when I jump on the bike and then right before getting off.
5. Hat!  Even though this was a short race I need to get into the habit of running with a hat with this bald head.

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