Wednesday, March 7, 2012

rockingham sprint race report - with iron.

this felt like my first race of the season and was probably due to it being the first time i have been close to 100% fit and healthy.  while i think i still held back in fear of pushing things (and finding out prior that it is bad to race while on antibiotics) i was the most relaxed i have been in a long time.  i had so much fun and it was a great day out.  perfect weather and a fun course.

the swim

i dont know how or why but they declared it a wetsuit swim.  when i swam back into shore i did go through a few cold patches so maybe that is where the officials put their temp gauge.  anyway i didnt bring my wetsuit as it is bloody summer !  and if i had then my worlds slowest transition would have taken longer than my swim.  i was surprised that people who did have their wetsuit chose to wear it for a nice 750m swim.  which gets me to the next point.  it was longer than 750m.  i think this year ,due to the shark factor, they have changed the swim course (for the better) and instead of swimming out in a rectangle shape we swim along the beach in a rectangle shape.  we dont swim out so deep and therefore try and avoid any big fish.  but as soon as you looked at this course you knew it was longer than 750m.  i also liked how we started deep and avoided the walk/run across the shallow water.  another change is that not only was i in the second wave (which starts just after the open/elite category) but it was just the pensioner blokes and 45 plus women.  i had a head start on everyone and got to race at the front for a change.  plus with all the big men in the water i could draft off and hide behind big bodies.  i really enjoyed the swim and felt great from the start.  i know the course was longer than 750m because my time of 19.19 did not reflect how the swim felt.  last year i swam in a wetsuit and struggled to get any rhythm, had a terrible swim and came out with a time of 16.59. 

the bike

i fucked this up.  at rockingham they do not record your transitions times.  your swim ends when you enter transition and so your bike includes T1. it also includes T2 as you do not cross another timing mat until you head out on the run and this is the same timing mat you crossed as you entered from the swim. make sense !?  anyway my T1 was probably okay but nothing flash.  i still fumbled around finding a safe spot for my goggles.  i started mr garmin when i got on the bike.  it took me awhile to get going but when i did i was having fun.  have i mentioned how much i love the crisis bike.  the course is flat and only two laps.  going out you had a bit of a headwind and it was an easy ride coming back.  the only people who passed me where the serious stick insect guys.  being the second wave it was also less congested.  i passed a girl who had number 100 which meant that she was in my age group (i was 98).  once i passed her she probably realised and she made the effort and passed me.  i have to admit i had a bit of a laugh.  i think she thought i was a threat.  now that has never happened before - she obviously didnt know i cant run.  as it turns out i did have a faster bike split than she did.  i liked the pace so i sat the legal 7 metres behind her for the last portion of the last lap.  mr garmin tells me that my bike split was 33.38.   and that is even with forgetting to stop it until i racked my bike (at the furthest distance from the bike dismount in transition).  the official time was 36.21.  my T2 was 1.12 (i was 2 metres away from the timing mat onto the run)  so that means it took me 1.12 to take my bike shoes off, put my socks on and then my shoes, tie the shoelaces, grab my hat and change mr garmin over to the wrist.  at least i did not sit down to  put my socks on like lance armstrong.  did i mention i also dropt mr garmin and watched as he bounced all over the place - on bitumen !  it was nice to see i had the 3rd fastest bike split in my age group.  this means my T1 was 1.31.  i aim to be the quickest in transition for the next race.  i also think i can go faster on the bike.  this was a comfortable ride and a race that had no taper. this time last year i had no legs from training.  there are improvements.

the run

not much to say about this really.  i got a bit of a stitch again and i ran 5.35 pace.  this has not happened since before the loss of iron and i was a bit surprised.  i was thinking maybe 5.45.    i started off with the slowest first kilometre and then settled in to run faster for each one.  time 27.46. 

the summary

i finished 6/13.  i was 7/13 for the swim, 3/13 on the bike and 9/13 in the run.  running is my limiter for sure.  so now i am determined that i will improve.  last year i ran 27.06 so obviously my training may be giving me more endurance but not increasing my speed.  but i dont think i really push myself on the run either.  i get into a pace  that is only slightly uncomfortable and still worry about whether i am going to make it.  at the time it feels slightly bad but i dont think i ever feel bad enough.  i was 4 minutes behind the girl who came fifth and 11.53 behind the age group winner.  total time 1.23.47.  i am becoming competitive and no longer back of the pack.

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