Sunday, November 29, 2009

left bank triathlon

okay so yesterday i swam the west coast 1000 so i was feeling pretty good about myself. however i was a little tired because i had dropt by charmaine's last night. being her 40th it was the right thing to do and while i am way over the wild pissy nights out the drive to her place was a mission. so i am up at 4am and off to east fremantle and the left bank triathlon. it was just up from point walter and in preen family territory. i rode past nana's old house and the cousins house four times that day. being a sports performance event it was the usual organised chaos. i got a great spot on the bike racks in transition - advantage of being early. that and great parking. the swim was in the river and didnt look inviting. i was thinking that i was going to do great in the swim since the 1000 swim yesterday. i should have known better. chatted to a couple of the regular girls in my age group (or the one below depending on size of grouping). at the start of the swim half the girls were well into the course as the horn sounded. totally unfair but this is the organised chaos i mentioned. so i was behind from the start and tired from the start. it was the worst i have ever felt. it was only 400 metres but felt like 4000. i got worried that the event every weekend and the extra swim had caught up with me. i have no idea of taper and have some crazy plan that these events are actually training sessions for something bigger. this is part of the experience and learning curve. i was extremely happy to be out of the water. stupid timing chip was coming off so had to stop and fix that. got on the bike for four laps and 20km which included a nice hill climb. there were far too many turns and far too many people. the course was too compact and small and the fun and novice people really did get in the way. remember seeing one guy who was huge and just about smothered his bike and his bum ate up his bike seat. but he is giving it a go. i maybe would have gone for some weight loss prior but that is me. okay so into second lap and i get stung by bee on my finger. it must have landed on my handle and then i squished it. stung like HELL. it put me off a bit. then back started to hurt. WTF ? i was passing a few people in my race and appeared to be holding my own so i figured i just needed to hang on. as it turns out i wasnt doing that badly but i was thinking of all the things i would NOT do next time. one girl came up behind me and said that i was making her work too hard to catch me. after that she never got more than 10 metres in front. got off the bike and into the run only to discover i had picked up something on my foot and it was now digging in. again WTF ? i could either stop and take shoe and sock off or just HTFU. i opted to HTFU. the run was 4 km and involved running up the hill climb - twice. that really did me in or felt like it did. i got passed by a few girls and just wanted it to be over. i learnt alot from this race. i have always had things go my way so to have things crop up was a good learning curve. for the course my times were not that bad so it was encouraging. went home and had a nana nap. 400m swim, 20km bike, 4km run. results 1.23.45 11.22 s, 43.15 b, 29.08 r. terrible run but considering the overall tired legs etc. until i start putting the training time in running i cannot complain that i am crap.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

West Coast 1000 Swim

okay for this i was seriously nervous - throw up nervous. swimming 1000 metres is not an issue. swimming 1000 metres in open water and at cottesloe was. plus (again) i was nervous because being a swim only event all the 'real' swimmers would be there. i did not sleep well and did not want to do it. but i kept telling myself that this is what it is all about. facing that which scares the shit out of you. so i get dressed, go to the toilet, organise my gear, go to the toilet. i hope the toilets at the surf club are nice. i drive the hour to cottesloe. this beach is famous for many things (shark attacks being one) but this is where the friends and family of heath ledger said a public farewell. it is a great beach. i get there and it is flat and very little wind. then i see the buoys and the distance to swim is right there in front of me. it looks so much further when you can see it all. i drop by the toilets. i get to sit and watch as the 1600m folks get ready and they go through the race briefing. huge plug for the cottesloe surf lifesaving and organisers. there were about 40 in the water on surf skis, speed boats and jet skis out and about and the westpac helicopter overhead shark spotting the whole time. then the 1000m people are called up and we walk down to the start. now you get to pace out the distance. i have put myself in the 30 minute wave and notice that not everyone appears to be grant hackett. i now figure that i will just give it my best shot and have fun. it is a beach start and i just hang out the back. it is rough getting out the thirty metres to the first buoy and what has become the norm i struggle to get my head in the water,breathing relaxed and my stroke going. so i resort again to breaststroke until i turn that first buoy. then i start freestyle and maybe for 100 metres alternate. then it is all freestyle. then i am relaxed and i am sighting and i am LOVING this. some people get in my way and this takes up some time and maybe i sight too much and i notice i go crooked when breathing to my weak right side. but i am LOVING it. about 400 metres to go i actually start putting on the pace. i can feel myself pulling the water back and i feel the strength in my stroke that i have in the pool. i pass people. i feel like i could swim forever and i am kicking strong. i turn the last buoy and sprint for home. i even catch a wave in and get up at the perfect time and cross the line. i remember saying to timing chip girl that was beautiful. did i mention that at the beginning a stinger got me on the arm. while in the water this doesnt hurt so much but it sure kicks in when you get out. grabbed some ice and watermelon - ice for arm and watermelon for me. i was so excited and so freakin pleased with myself. i did it. 23 minutes. whao hoooo.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Great Bike Ride

i was nervous about this. it is a 53 km circuit around the river with closed roads. i think i was nervous because i like to be prepared and anything new involves the unexpected but mainly because my idea of who 'real' bike riders are would be there and would mock my lame everything. yes this is being very insecure. but i had only be riding my 'real' bike three months and i was still not comfortable with the pedals and shoes etc. i also have to work out the mechanics of parking etc as 4000 people are entered. i get to south perth early and no problem parking. i ride around the river to langley park and while it is chilly the wind is almost nil. it is going to be a beautiful day. people rock up constantly and some of the bikes are just magnificent. the guys/gals/groups doing two circuits or 106km start first and most are on their second lap by the time we start. i had put myself in the 25-30km range but by the look of some bikes not everyone was as honest. our group is called up to start and i get away without falling off. this had happened to other people and believe me i had images of me being sprawled all over the start line. i get going and start to relax. it is going to be fantastic ride and turns out it was. best fun i have had on a bike. there were hills -up and down, great views, fast sections, people to ride with for awhile and the challenge. i loved every moment. lots of folks had been talking about 'the' hill at mosman park. even the commentators at the start. gweeds (friend) talked about how he didnt make it up the whole way and so i was very nervous about this. plus i have no idea how you unclip while climbing but this never occurred to me until i got to 'the' hill. so we are climbing a hill and i ask the guy next to me if this is 'the' hill and he says yes. i am surprised as it is not that bad. then we go around a few corners and i look up and see 'the ' hill. i know this to be true because it is littered with people getting off their bikes and pushing. luckily i get to the right gear quickly and start climbing. it is straight up for 150 metres. it is at this point that i realise i have no idea how to unclip without falling straight over so i know i have only one option - make it to the top. i did - couldnt let my bike get damaged falling over. i was so excited and completely knackered. results 1.53.28 AVG 28 km Overall 991/2167, Gender 82/459, Cat 7/65. good day out.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Power Station Triathlon

strange preparation for this event being on a saturday morning. managed to get away from work early on friday but not for a good reason. the idiots running the asylum made rosanne redundant and it had an impact on everybody. so i mowed the lawn, veged in front of the tv then got my gear organised. i had to have a glass of wine and then felt guilty for it. then reminded myself that i am not an elite athlete :). up at 4am for the drive that would need a cut lunch and a waterbag. i was not feeling motivated at all and a bit nervous. it was going to be an ocean swim and the weather was looking just okay. they had forecast light showers. i am now over being worried about cold weather and now seem to focus on whether it will rain or not. i am early so i get a great parking spot and first choice of bike rack location. i register and then start chatting to the girls around me. sometimes this has been slightly maniac to keep my mind away from the race but i appeared normal and coherent. this race had the serious triathletes. i was in the sprint - 400m swim, 20km bike and 4km run. there was a super sprint so helped lower the numbers in my event. the water was very choppy with waves around a foot. the swim started up the beach which worked out well as we would be swimming with the current and i would be able to breathe on my favourite side. there was the obstacle of the old jetty which needed to be avoided at all costs. the fun event went first and then the guys in my event. i had on my long sleeve speedo rashy and i still think at the beginning of every cold swim the best $90 ever spent. we all run into the water and swim out to the first buoy because it was a deep water start. weird and made it hard as people drifted past the start. i was to the edge and back and i was still getting my breathing settled after the shock of the cold water. started off with a bit of freestyle and then had to go back to breast stroke and again had the thought go through the head that i couldnt do it and it seemed impossible. but i kept going and it wasnt made any easier by goggles that fogged up and i couldnt see jack shit. it was tough but in the end i did enjoy being in the water. found out later that alot of people got stung but i seemed to avoid them all. did come across alot of seaweed. my latest theory on poor ows is that my brain wont let my body breathe because it cannot see where it is going. when i got to the last buoy i took off freestyle and passed people and got out at the same time as some guys. i am not the worst and i am so determined that i will find answers to this. felt great when i got on the bike and just took off and really enjoyed the ride. averaged 29k and considering all the turns i was happy. then came the dreaded run. started off rough but by the second lap and last 2km i realised i was feeling comfortable and had found a rythmn. i also notice that at this point that is when people stop passing me or is it that noone is left who can pass me ? the run is dissappointing but until i start devoting more serious time and effort to the training i need to shut up. the goanna that jumped out at me (and if you know the animal then jumping maybe an exaggeration) but it did scare the crap out of me and sent my heart rate up a notch. i felt great at the finish and i think i benefited from having done the pinkie tri. 400m, 20km, 4km. 1.23.11. 12.31 swim, 44.50 bike, 25.50 run.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Pinkie Race Report

so after seven months of winter training which included getting a new bike (i love my bike), the City To Surf fun run and video swim analysis etc i finally got to try it all out. this event is for the serious beginner which was going to be excellent for testing the new equipment and getting comfortable with it. the swim was in the pool and this had me very excited as i dreamed of fast times. i had a plan about swimming my own race. i am a smart person. so WHY then do i ignore every smart thought in my head ? i was meant to start at a reasonable pace and build and come home fast. instead i take off with the pack at sprint pace, struggle with the distraction of my speedo top dragging like the puppies are on display (had sports bra on so logic told me not to worry), bring my heart rate up so quick that i could hardly breathe and had to slow at the end of fifty to a snails pace. this was a huge lesson and i am glad that it happened in this event. it has led me to believe that i am always starting off too fast and this is why i get fatigued quickly. my next swim in the pool i tested my theory and the first 600 felt better and built up to a decent speed while still feeling fresh. this could be the answer but the start has to be slow and relaxed. anywho out of the pool ran a mile to transition and the heart is still racing. got shoes on, race belt, sunnies and then do you think i could clip my helmet on. NNOooooo. ran another mile to mount area and thank the tri gods i clipped in quickly and then proceeded to pass so many girls that i think i started to laugh hysterically. while still trying to get the heart down. i LOVE my bike. the bike is KING. it truly was worth the wait. i was doing the passing and grinning like the idiot i am. while avoiding the car humps i managed to get feet out of shoes and through dismount. racked the bike that must be worshipped, running shoes on and then ignored small tip to put hat on while starting to run toward run exit. i thought i would feel better in the run after training has improved but i think heart rate was still up and so stuck on 6 minute kms. struggled a bit at the end. i have to start doing interval running. i hung around after and actually felt like going for a swim. when i got home i felt pretty good and had some lunch and watched a movie. then i checked my email and the results were in. in the past this has been rather pitiful but improvement at last. always taking into account that the competition wasn't exactly stellar there were some very competitive girls there. in age group i was 5 out of 30. overall i was 68 from 540. for the bike leg i was 24th fastest overall and second in age group. i went stupid excited. the person in age group faster than me won the whole thing. my swim could have been better and my run still lets me down. but i have IMPROVED. then i got on the bike and rode my 40km training circuit. slept well.