Sebago Lake Triathlon Race Report

June 18th, 2017

First of all a huge thank you to “my volunteers”.  My friend since junior high, Dianne Day, my three sisters Valerie, Ginny and Vicki and my niece Katie.   It was awesome having you guys out there and I know it was long, hot day for you.  THANK YOU!!!!

I have been procrastinating about doing my race report because at first I was pretty happy with my race, and then I wasn’t.  I wanted to give it a little time to gain some perspective.

So beginning with the positive.  My pre race jitters were minimal.   It was the most relaxed I have ever been in the days leading into a race.   I was confident in my training and just felt really good.  Race morning prep went smoothly.  We were assigned spots in transition – I like that.   I didn’t forget anything.  My wet suit went on without a hitch, and we lined up for the start.

I felt like my swim went according to plan.  I was really happy that I didn’t have the “freak out” I get sometimes in a race when I feel like the wet suit is choking me.  I never had to calm my brain down.  The water outside the cove was a little choppy, and I was trying to swim with a wider entry.  I was thinking about the things Eney had taught us at swim camp.  I swam in until my fingers were scraping  the bottom. At the end of the swim I noticed that I had not started my Garmin correctly, and spent a little transition time on that.

T1 went pretty smoothly.   We had driven the bike course and I knew it was pretty hilly – no real flat anywhere.   I was trying to keep my power above 120 Watts and not to go too far above my FTP.  The electronic shifters are fabulous.  I was much more willing  to shift than I have ever been and in both directions.  My Garmin beeps at me every fifteen minutes to eat.   I don’t know if I ate the first time, but I was consistent about it after.   The roads were pretty rough and I didn’t spend as much time in the aero bars as I would have liked.  I felt like I rode pretty strong and smart, trying to not “spend all my pennies,” so I would have a good run.

T2 went well.  I did spend a few seconds talking  to a 13 year old  girl about continuing, but I will always consider that time well spent.  As soon as I started on the run, I knew something was wrong with my left hip flexor.   It was super tight and running was – painful is too strong a word, painfully awkward.  Then I saw the first hill, steep and rocky dirt.  I walked and tried to stretch out my hip.  Ran, walked, ran, walked.  Probably runners wouldn’t think it was a hilly course, but I thought it was.  No flat here, either.  Thom was at one of the early corners and I told him my hip was bad.   He told me to manage the day I was given.  I was like, “Yep, already doing that babe.”  I was happy I stayed positive, kept smiling and thanking the course workers, tried to encourage people who looked like they were suffering even more than me.  Saw the 13 year old girl twice and that just thrilled me.  When I finished I was happy with the day.  It hadn’t gone according to plan, but I had managed it.

The negative – my swim time  was where I wanted it to be, but my overall swim placement was lower than I wanted.   That’s when I start thinking I should have swum harder, I should have kicked more.   I should have been more aggressive.   Instead of having a nice, pleasant swim, I should have kicked ass and taken names.

My bike splits for power were pretty good for the first ten miles, but then they dropped a lot.   My perception at the time was that I was working just as hard, but you can’t argue with the data.  Then on my recovery ride, my normalized power was higher than my race day power, and it felt like a pretty mellow ride.  Which got me thinking about why the difference.  And of course it’s food.   Race day breakfast was a glass of chocolate milk and a banana.   Recovery day breakfast was a breakfast bowl with steak, eggs and potatoes and a glass of chocolate milk.   I have already bought a small jar of peanut butter to take to Iceland to try to address my race day “eating problem.”  Food would probably have helped a bit on the run too.   I started off with two gels in my pocket, but one fell out and I didn’t notice.   For Iceland, I have a different flask with two large pockets.  I’ll put my gels there.

I’m “happy” that my next brick includes hill repeats on the bike.  I’m blaming riding the hills for my tight hip flexor when I got off the bike.  Obviously, I’ll need to do a lot of mobility work too.  Someday, I am going to have the race of my dreams., the one where everything goes “right”. Until then, I’ll keep working the plan, analyzing and making changes to get better.

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