Where have I been all week?! Well, to be honest, I’ve been having the life force drained out of me as I drone on endlessly about rendezvous in an effort to finish my tasks before my cert sim next week at work.
Last Sunday morning I headed over to Pearland (with #1 fan in tow) for the Y Freedom Tri, my first triathlon of the season! That in itself is unusual, since in recent years I would’ve done at least two or three tris by this point in the summer. But this year, I’ve made no secret of the fact that my training has been zilch. Knowing that, my goal was simply to finish. I knew I had absolutely no shot at matching my time from last year, and probably wouldn’t match my time from 2007. But since I’ve done this race every year since it started and the course hasn’t changed, I can compare results!
2007 – 6:34
2008 – 6:41
2009 – 6:14
My swim on Sunday was pretty normal. There were faster swimmers racing this year, since I moved from #106 last year to #152 this year — and I entered the same 300m swim time I always do. I ended up passing the guy in front of me halfway through the swim. After that I had open water to myself until the last 10 meters, when I was significantly slowed by a girl who had flipped onto her back. Since there were only 10 meters left, I didn’t plan to pass her so I slowed and started breaststroking. This didn’t work, because she was kicking so violently that torrents of water were flying into my face and I couldn’t breathe. I actually ended up just standing up in the pool and walking the last 15 feet to the wall. Oh well.
The big drop in my time this year is only because this year they finally moved the chip mat so that we crossed it immediately after getting out of the pool, instead of a few hundred feet away. This leads to a very interesting conclusion that validates what I have said all along — for short distance races, it doesn’t matter how much I’ve been swimming lately, because I always swim at pretty much the same pace! In 2007, I was only a couple months removed from a half ironman and had continued to train like crazy. I was in great shape. But this year, before Sunday, I had been swimming exactly ONCE in the last 6 months.
So, the new conclusion that I state with some degree of seriousness: unless I’m training for a half ironman and need to build my endurance, it’s not even worth spending time in the pool.
2007 – 1:35
2008 – 0:52
2009 – 1:34
I took it a bit easy in T1, jogging very slowly over to my bike (though I did luck out with a spot right on the end of the rack). Again, they moved the swim-to-T1 timing mat, which explains why last year’s T1 was super quick. And back in 2007, I hadn’t fully streamlined my transition yet so I probably was putting on a lot more stuff.
2007 – 42:32
2008 – 36:22
2009 – 38:54
I was really happy with my performance on the bike on Sunday. My Garmin displayed an average of 19 mph, and I was only a couple minutes worse than last year. Overall, it felt good. There wasn’t much wind so my speed stayed consistent. I leapfrogged back and forth with a guy who would ride really hard for a while, and then coast for 15-20 seconds. Ride hard, then coast. Again and again. I did not understand his riding technique at all, and by the end of the bike I was just tired of hearing the “whirrrrrrrrrrr” of his gears when he took a break from pedaling.
Oh, and for reference, the big drop in my time on the bike from 2007 to 2008 is due to my awesome tri bike that I started racing with in 2008. For better or for worse, in some cases you really CAN buy speed.
2007 – 1:08
2008 – 0:50
2009 – 1:14
I’m not gonna lie. I was tired coming off the bike. I took a moment to catch my breath, and walked to the exit instead of jogging.
2007 – 32:47
2008 – 33:55
2009 – 38:23
OH MY. There are no words to describe the levels of SUCK that I attained on the run this year, so I will just leave it at that.
2007 – 1:24:45 – 1st place Athena
2008 – 1:18:34 – 1st place Athena
2009 – 1:26:20 – 3rd place Athena
If I’d matched my time from last year, I would have repeated as 1st place Athena. Alas, I didn’t come close, and hadn’t expected to. Had I not attained the previously mentioned high levels of SUCK on the run, I would have still beaten my time from two years ago. Alas, I did not.
Overall, I’m quite happy with how the race went, aside from the run. 1:26 was as good as I could have reasonably expected given the hot and humid conditions combined with my almost complete lack of training. I didn’t end up getting my award, because when I looked at the posted results at the race, I was listed in 4th place. It was only getting hotter, so Jose and I decided to head home. Oh well.
Overall, it was really fun to get back into tri mode and get one under my belt for 2009. I came home that day and signed up for both Tri Girl and the Clear Lake Sprint in August, so I have a couple months to get back into the swing of things, and hopefully improve my performance!