Sunday, June 27, 2010

I didn't win!!

This was a great race! I think I feel so good about it because I came in 5/6 in the aquabike division...meaning there was good competition! Including someone I swam with in the master's class. Not sure why she didn't run, I think she just isn't much of a runner. But she was the fastest swimmer in the group (male or female) so I knew she at least would be tough to beat (I didn't know much about her cycling other than I was faster, but didn't know if it would be enough to offset the swim). She ended up beating me by 2 minutes and 13 seconds! The 5 minutes faster she swam* wasn't enough for the 3 minutes I beat her on the bike. That, plus there were 3 other faster (and one slower, though not by much) women aquabikers.

*The swim...can you call it a swim if you have to RUN to the first buoy (and partway to the second)? Can you say LOW TIDE? Ouch. If my ankle wasn't enough to make me unhappy that the swim included a run, the oyster shells on the slimy, muddy bottom of Long Island Sound was. So, I was at a bit of a disadvantage there, but...who cares. After I could actually swim, it wasn't bad. Took a while to get used to the nasty salt water (and sulfur smell that accompanies low tide around here) but the temperature was perfect (71F), there was a lot of room to spread out, and even if I am not fast, I am steady. Felt good. 30:51.

T1. 4:18. Of course it includes the long walk to my bike that everyone else can run, and my wetsuit came off easier than last time, so...whatever.

Bike. Let's start with the flat tire I got while pumping up my tires at 5am. Luckily, still at home. Got my husband out of bed to change it for was the rear tire, plus it's been 2 years since I've changed one. Despite his broken collar bone (crash 3 weeks ago), he was still way faster than I ever would have been. So with everything good bike wise, I went out to have FUN. I decided that swimming was survival, biking was fun, and running (when I did it) was WORK. So, I can't work anymore...better that than not being able to have FUN! It was a tough course, though not as tough as the one a few weeks ago. I did manage to slow down to a whopping 4.2mph on one steep hill that WOULD NOT END. I still passed 2 people at that speed...go figure! And there were a lot of false, I would be dying and going so slowly, then it would turn into an actual hill and I would speed up and feel better. 17.5 average speed for the 24.8 miles.

That's it! Anyway, it was fun. Phew.

Friday, June 25, 2010

3 weeks??

Geez, almost 3 weeks since I last posted. Clearly not much has been going on! To catch up though:

1. I managed to get 2 unpaid days to go to CA to ride in September. Am I crazy to think this is a good plan? Fly to San Francisco Friday after school, ride Saturday and Sunday, get back to SF for a red eye back to CT to teach Monday morning (with secret coverage if I am late, which I will be). Fly back to Santa Barbara Wednesday night and get to where the tour is, ride Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and fly back Sunday. It's a lot of flying,'s worth it, right? The silver lining is that I don't have to leave Andra for 11 days. The downsides are many, but that may make up for it all.

2. I have another aquabike race on Sunday. This one is in my hometown. No, I haven't ridden the bike course...stupid. Though a lot of it I already know, some I don't.

3. School ended yesterday!

4. Working out has been less than inspired. I'm managing 3-4 times a week, but no more. Riding once a week, swimming once a week, lifting or a class once or twice. I went back to boot camp on Saturday and managed to do most of the things, even some jumping (though I have to land flat on my foot or heel, at least it's jumping!). Some modifications necessary, but it felt like I did more than I was when I sort of quit going.

5. I miss walks. Even more than I miss running, I miss going out for walks in the neighborhood.

6. My mom was here this past week, just left this morning. The woman GETS THINGS DONE. In one week, we (mostly she, but guilt made me help her) washed ALL of the downstairs windows, inside and out; made curtains for 6 of the windows to replace the horribly ugly (and dirty) blinds that I hated yet lived with for 3.5 years) (actually, I still have to hem them and put them up...let's see how long that takes me without her here cracking the whip); trimmed tons of tree branches that had been blocking my vegetable garden and others that had made out back yard look like a jungle; weeded the cracks in the sidewalks and driveway; cleaned both bathrooms. Seriously, I don't know where she gets her drive. And yes, I did feel guilty holding the ladder while my 65 year old mom washed my windows, but there's just no talking sense into her sometimes.

7. My friend Sarita moved! But she's getting married, so it's all good.

8. Need to overhaul diet and exercise plan starting ASAP for the summer. It's a mixed blessing that my weight isn't budging from 147, which is just 1 pound over pre-pregnancy. No, of course it's not like I look the same...

Well, that's an update. More after Sunday's race!

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Race Report!

The swim: I debated whether I should warm up in the water or not (remember I had no time goals here) but decided I would. The water was warm, perfect with my wetsuit (very few swam without one) and immediately I knew things were going to be...GOOD. My wave was the last one, with 40+ women and a few men who were on relay teams. But basically the fast people were long gone so no worries about being swum over. I would guess I was about halfway toward the front of my wave. A little jostling in the beginning, but I felt good. Slow, yes, and I was never out of breath/pushing hard, but that was part of the plan (this time). I just picked off the buoys, and though by the last one I was ready to be done, if I had needed to I really could have kept going! I never panicked, and kept thinking to myself, why, this is almost enjoyable! The official results aren't up yet but by my watch it was .9 miles in just under 32 minutes. I had figured about 30, so...fine. I can't wait to see how that stacks up with my age group...

T1 (Tonly): Slow. Yeah, yeah. Of course it was slow, there was a long walk (well, run for everyone else) from the beach to my bike. And after being extended for 32 minutes with no weight on it, the ankle wasn't happy to be asked to go fast (relatively speaking here). So couple that with trying to get the wetsuit over my ankle without crying, and it apparently was about 5:27. Ouch.

Bike: Not the 17+ I had hoped for, not by a long shot!! By this time, the sun was out and it was HUMID after the morning's rain. I hadn't eaten enough (always a enough, and risk serious GI distress...I figured I'd rather be weak than in pain), so pulled the GU out of my saddle bag and that seemed to make a big difference. This course was HILLY. I'm used to hills, but this redefined rolling hills for me. I would go from 40+ on the downhills (FUN!) to I think I hit 6.2 on one steep uphill. Of course I passed a lot of people. This was expected, given my wave and the fact that, by the time I left transition, there were very few people behind me! I am VERY curious to see others' bike times, as my average was only 15.2 yet I really couldn't have gone much faster. I definitely have a problem maintaining momentum up hills, and a few times (ok, a lot of times), I said screw it and didn't even try. The lack of competition that far back didn't help my speed, but again, I had FUN, and really that was the point today.

I waited around FOREVER for the awards. I actually thought I might have been the only aqua biker, and, well, you know what that means. They went through most of the age group awards (but missed some, including the only 60+ year old woman) but then said, oh, we're not done but we're not ready to give those out yet. UGH. So I went up and asked, and they sent me back to the timing truck, and the guy there told me I'd won. Out of 2 females. Though I did also beat the 2 males. So I went back to the stage and asked for my award, and left. No going up on stage, no fanfare (though honestly no that many people stuck around for the real awards anyway), which I guess annoyed me a little.

On the drive home, I was pissed. I'd had fun and won my division. Why was I upset? Took me a long time to figure it out (I had a long drive), but I guess I came up with the fact that this is just a consolation prize. My competition is now the fat, lazy, and crippled. And ok, I'm the fastest one. So fucking what? I'll get over it. I have no choice. But my performance, fun though it was, didn't deserve a prize. There's just no real meaning in what I won.

All the real athletes ran.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Aquabike #1Tomorrow

I have my first race of the season tomorrow...Olympic distance aquabike. I will probably feel like a schmuck when I finish the bike and see everyone else keep going, but, not exactly a choice, so instead I get to go to the finish line and cheer! I went up to Quassy today to get my packet and drop off my bike. It's about an hour away, so I need to get up at 4:30 tomorrow. Great. Last night I had two (TWO) separate dreams about missing the start and forgetting really important stuff (like wetsuit and bike shoes). Hopefully that's out of my system so I'll sleep tonight.

Goals? Eh...not really. I really have no basis for judging the swim (though there were something like 12 bouys on the lake today...confusing), so my only goal is to NOT PANIC and feel comfortable. My last triathlon (2007 I think?) was basically panicking the entire half-mile and wishing I were close enough to shore to quit the whole damn thing. So anything would be an improvement. And, the aquabike wave goes last (with the older women wave) so I don't have to worry about being swum over. Nice. Bike goals would be to average 17+, since pretty much every ride I've done lately, regardless of course of distance, has been about 16. I don't know anything about this course, but at the same time, I don't have to run afterward, so I would like to end it feeling cooked. We'll see!!