Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Century (Metric) Ride

Did a Metric Century on Monday in the hills of St. Francisville. Wanted to do the full century, but with it being a holiday and all, I couldn't convince my significant other to watch the kids for 5.5 hours without me. The metric ended up being 65 miles due to some re-routes because of some construction.

The ride started out nasty as miles 5 - 15 were ridden in a steady downpour. Riding 6 inches from some one's tire in a paceline at 23-25 mph in the driving rain is not the most fun thing in the world. However, it does make you focus just a little bit more than normal. Stayed with the pack through the first 45 minutes and then about 6 of us broke off the front until we got to the first SAG stop. Re-fueled and then took off again with the 6 off the front. Got to the second SAG at mile 37 and we were down to 4, but we picked up 4 more who were bailing on the century. Well, 5 of them take off without too much notice and three of us are left to try to pick up with them. We three took turns pulling a mile at a time and finally caught the lead pack right at SAG stop number 3. Well, I pull in to get some food and I hear them say they are stopping and they are going to keep going. Great, they pull out and I am stuck trying to catch up. Takes about a mile, but I catch up to the 5 of them (we lost 2 somewhere along the way, can't quite remember how or when, maybe when the three of us were catching up). We set up in a paceline with everyone taking about 3 minutes. We are averaging 21-22 on the flats, 14-16 up the hills and 25-27 on the downhills. We make it to SAG 4 at mile 50 and I am about dead.

After SAG 4, where they finally let us stop for more than two minutes, I don't take any more pulls. Me and a lady from New Orleans just ride the back and let the other 4 pull. Without the group, I surely would have died somewhere in between miles 50 and 65. Just didn't have the legs for it. However, in the paceline it wasn't so bad. Almost lost them a couple of times, but each time I pulled out just enough to hang on up the hills. All in all a good ride. I think we averaged around 19 for the 65, which in the hills of St. Franny is respectable, at least for me anyway. Especially after putting in 50 miles two days before on Saturday.

Doing a brick in the morning to kind of see where I stand for Heatwave. It ain't going to be pretty that is for sure. With my run mileage hanging around 5-6 miles per week, the race next weekend is going to be brutal. Maybe I can pull a rabbit out of my hat...See you at the race Tri-James.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Don't Call it a Comeback

After 4 weeks of taking it easy after New Orleans Half IM, I finally hit a "decent" week of training. I have still been staying off the feet by not running, except for the one 5k two weeks ago and the 3 mile run I did this week. I actually got in a consistent week.

Monday and Tuesday I slouched and skipped my swim and bike. However, I got back in the groove on Wednesday. Got in 1750 in the pool and then went for a three mile run. Heel didn't hurt too bad the next day, so I may try to run some more this week. Thinking of getting the "boot" to wear at night to try and beat the plantar fasciitis. Thursday was supposed to be bike, but some BR Tri buddies wanted to ride on Friday. So, I got back in the pool on Thursday and wimped out after 2100. Friday am was a 31 mile bike ride with 4 other peeps. Good ride, couple of pick-ups, but it was very humid and miserable. Saturday was a "rest" day. Took the kids to see Mike the Tiger, to play at the Louisiana Arts and Science Museum in downtown BR and then to the BR Zoo for the Keypoint Credit Union member party. Came home around 2 and we all crashed for a 2 hour nap. Went out early this morning since it was supposed to rain and put in an hour of riding before I met some of the BR Tri crew for some paceline stuff. Ended up riding 56 miles for the morning.

Hopefully, I can continue the training the next couple of weeks. Signed up for the Heatwave Classic, which is almost an Olympic distance taking place on June 6. Bike and run is Olympic, but the swim is only 0.5 mile instead of 0.9 miles. Looking forward to it, if I can get some run miles in. Going to be a miserable run if not.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Race Report Continued (Finally)

Race Day:

Got up around 5 so we could head over around 5:30 to transition. My ride was late and we end up not getting to transition until 6:15. My wave is the third wave, so this is going to be a rush job. Organize my stuff real quick and start heading over to the swim start. Had to walk the mile to the start because the line for the bus was way too long and I knew I would never make it on time. Ended up jogging the last 1/4 mile. Got in the port-o-potty line at 6:45 and my start was at 7:12. Did my business and heard them sending off the second pro wave (women). The physically challenged athletes were next, then my wave. Got my chip and started to put on my wetsuit. Got to the start line just as they are sending my wave into the water, not how I wanted to start my day. Then I can't get my wetsuit zipped because of the tri top that I had to wear because of the nipple rule. Had to ask a volunteer near the start to zip it up. Get my goggles on and get wet and then they send us off.


Ran what seemed like the first 150 m until it finally got too deep. Let the fast swimmers get out ahead and then settled into a groove. Swam near this one guy for what seemed like the whole race. Drafted off him a few times, but he wasn't quite fast enough to stay ahead off me when I was in his draft. I would pull beside him, but could never leave him behind. Got out of the water and my watch gad around 37 minutes. Let them strip off my wetsuit and got to transition. Official swim time was 38:40, which includes the trek up to transition.


My bike was on the opposite end of transition from the swim. Had to run what seemed like a 5k across the parking lot that was transition. My feet were getting hammered by little rocks. Finally got to my bike, got ready and headed out. T1 was 3:09, but that was due to the long run across the lot with no shoes.


Nothing eventful except for slight quartering tailwind on the way out and large headwind on the way back in. I checked the wind report the day after and confirmed. We had a 7-8 mph quartering tailwind for about the first 1/3 of the race and then the last 1/3 had a 16-18 mph headwind. The middle third was a combination of the 16-18 mph as tailwind and headwind. Needless to say, the last 1/3 sucked. Going into a 16-18 mph wind on the last 16 miles was not fun at all. Tried to keep my heart rate down in the 150 range, but couldn't manage it on the headwind portion. Finished the bike in 2:58:34. 18.8 mph average which is right below the 19 I was hoping for. Think I could have done it without the headwind. Hit T1 with a heel that was already hurting from the bike. Got off the bike and immediately knew my heel was not going to hold up.


Now I had to run the 5k back across the parking lot to get to the run exit. At least this time I had shoes on. Still took me 3:12 though. The wife was waiting on me at the exit and I told her it was going to be a long run with my heel.


Made it to about mile 1.5 before I had to stop because of the heel pain. That was the story of the run. My heel combined with my fatigue made it a fight. Did a combination of walk run the entire time. Not much to say except that people passed me by the hundreds. After that first 1.5 I only ran one other section from aid station to aid station and that was mile 6-7.5. After that I was screwed. Resorted to running 10 minutes and walking 2 minutes. That got me about a mile each time. Was never so happy to see a finish line. The number of people was amazing and the finish was electric. Wish I just would have felt happy coming down the chute about my race. Ended up with a 2:34:26, which blows. 11:47 average sucks for the training that I did. Even though I only ran like 10 miles a week the last 4 weeks due to my heel, I should have been able to run sub 10 min miles. Race total was 6:18. No goals met except for my "C" goal of finishing. Had so much promise to start. Came out of T2 in 3:43 total for the day to that point. With a 2:02 half mary I had my "A" goal. With a 2:17 I had my "B" goal. Sucks the feeling right out of you as you realize you will not make it.

All in all, despite my heel and run issues, it was a great first race for New Orleans. At this point, I don't think I am going to do it next year, as the price is a little steep. May just volunteer and go do lonestar in Galveston. About $50 cheaper and way less people. We'll see.