Today I completed my second triathlon at the Pleasant Prairie Sprint Triathlon in Wisconsin. Mike was doing the “du” with the Dare2Tri club, and I had signed up for the sprint as part of the Chicago Tri Club.
- I was very nervous for my 2nd triathlon. I’ve been very skittish about my cycling recently, and was worried about that. I also realized (this week) that I hadn’t really done much overall in training: two swims (one in open water), and a single brick workout of swim-run. None of the standard bike-to-run brick workouts.
- Weather was great! We had cool, clear weather and luckily the thundershowers forecasted did not show up!
- Mike and I went up to Pleasant Prairie on Saturday, and got to hear the course overview, talk through the swim while actually seeing the buoys, and drove the bike course.
We also got to meet up with CTC’ers for dinner, which was great to meet more people and have some friendly faces on race day. Melissa, Renee, Cristina & Matt were all great to talk with!
- I chose not to wear my wetsuit given the 77 degree water temperature. I’m glad I was wearing only my tri kit as that was more than enough for me!
- It felt longer than my first tri swim– mostly because it was deeper so I had to do more real swimming.
- I still felt pretty strong on the swim. I definitely didn’t panic and was passing quite a few people.
- Coming out of the swim and into T1, I couldn’t find my spot! Where is my bike?!!! I definitely lost some time on that transition, and need to work more on these in general.
- I was really worried about riding on my new (six-months-old) bike. I was even debating whether to clip in or not. I decided to clip-in, and am happy about it!
- I felt very good about my shifting decisions, although I did have some trouble initially getting from the small gear in front to the bigger one. More familiarity & time on my bike would help me execute these shifts more confidently & quickly.
- Overall I felt pretty strong, and I tried to keep a high cadence up as much as I could. I executed quite a few solid turns
- The Not-So-Good: I’m still not as comfortable as I’d like. As I said in my South Shore recap:
- I have a fear of falling, which while under control in normal circumstances, increases exponentially if any of the following occur:
- Attempting a turn – there were two 180-degree turns on the course. I had to stop at each point to redirect my bike.
- Taking my hands off the handle bars (adjust sunglasses, take a drink)
- That is still definitely true. I avoided taking a drink (although I’ve done it successfully in practice a few times) while riding, and am so happy about my new sunglasses.
- I also had a little bit of a spill around mile 9.5. My calf cramped up as I was about to take a turn, and I couldn’t keep pedaling to keep the turn going, and then had trouble clipping out to stop for a moment. Just a few scrapes, and I got a free calf massage & hug from a safety official!
- T2 was also a bit slower than I’d expected. What am I doing in these transitions?
- Once I was out on the run I just wanted to finish happy! I tried to keep it easy for the first mile, to get my legs back, although they didn’t feel to bad. I kept zipping along, and mostly passing 40+ aged men. Caught up to Christina who I’d met the day before at the CTC dinner.
- I didn’t think or push way too hard on this run, and probably could have gone harder sooner.
Overall Thoughts & Tips for Next Time:
- This was a very well organized race! Lots of very clear direction & support on all three legs of the event, quite a few spectators both on course & at the race base, and lots of liquid & food post-race for everyone!
- More practice on the bike – longer distance rides and getting comfortable with turns, drinking, etc.
- Practice transitions. Make those times tighter!
- Swim more! Get my swim time down to what it could be.
Times (and age group rankings):
- Swim: 16:53 (4/17)
- T1: 4:28 (15/17)
- Bike: 44:28 (11/17)
- T2: 2:47 (13/17)
- Run: 27:52 (5/17)
- Total: 1:36:27 (9/17)
I have the Grand Haven Sprint Triathlon coming up in two weeks! A few goals I have for that that I’d like to work toward:
- Sub-15 Swim
- Bike: 17.9 MPH ( my pace w/o the “rest stop”)
- Faster transitions- get both transitions to the length of today’s T1
- Maintain my near PR run!