Race Report – Steelman Open Water Swim (1.5 mile)

This was a great race billed at 1.5 miles, but I clocked it at 1.84. I was initially very disappointed at my slow time, but I confirmed with several other people that their Garmins showed longer distances. My time was 1:03:12, which puts my pace at 1:57/100 yds, exactly where I’ve been training lately. The water was 75 degrees and smooth as glass, at least until I jumped into it with 400 of my buds. I used my usual plan, which is to get away from everyone and find open water. That worked pretty well, and I only ran into traffic a couple of times. I was initially at the back of the pack, but I caught a few guys later on. There were a lot of strong swimmers, though. I just tried to set a pace I could hold comfortably and stay there. I think just need to ratchet up my training so I can hold a faster pace. Despite a bad sleep last night (in the car at the park), I felt pretty good in the water. It was kind of fun to be able to get out of the water and not have to do anything else!

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Race Report, Catfish Sprint Triathlon, 19 JUL 2015

The Catfish Sprint Triathlon is in the books! This was my 11th triathlon overall and second race in a week – last week was the Steelman Open Water Swim. It was a beautiful day to run after several days of scary storms. I decided early on that I was going to skip the wetsuit on the swim — air temperatures going to 94 degrees. I felt strong in the swim and bike going into the race, and felt I could improve. My previous time in this race was 1:35:40 (2013) and this time I did it in: 1:33:35. Times listed below show 2013 splits with 2015 splits. The race began and ended on City Island in Harrisburg, PA, with the swim in the Susquehanna River. Bike and run took routes across the river to Harrisburg.

Swim (.8 mile) (13: 20/13:24): Glad I ditched the wetsuit — I definitely would have overheated in it. The current was running pretty fast — it was hard to stand up at the start. I started toward the back to give myself some room, but if I do this next year I’ll go to the front. I caught some people in the first wave, and I ran into several “current riders.” They were okay, but I kept running into them in the water. I tried to steer right, but I did not want to get too far into the channel. Other than that, a nice swim. I wanted to use the current, and also push hard and try to improve my time. This was certainly the easiest of the long swims I’ve done lately. The time was nearly exactly the same as last year, but I did use a wetsuit last time so the extra buoyancy gave me an advantage. Since the time is the same without, that means I’ve gotten stronger in the water.

Bike (14.5 miles)(49:33/45: 27): I realized two days out from the race that I had not been back on the bike in a month, not since Eagleman. I probably could have used at least a couple days on the bike and a couple days spinning, but I’ve been focusing on re-habbing my legs for the run. Regardless, I felt confident about the flat course. The new and lighter bike helped a lot, and I just focused on trying to maintain a steady and higher pace. Looking forward to seeing the watch data to see where I should have pushed harder, but I’m happy with it.

Run (3.1 miles) (25: 20/29:37): I lost time on the run, but I knew I would. I need to do more training to get my legs and hips strengthened back to where they used to be. I also need to do a lot more bricks before the next race. All in all, though, the run went a little bit better than I thought it would considering the shape I’m in at the moment.

Transitions: I was also quicker on transitions this time. I seem to be a little more organized and was able to get in and out quickly. No wetsuit help with a quick T-1 time.

Nutrition and hydration: Standard pre-race breakfast, then 2 GUs before swim start. Memories of Eagleman haunted me, so I wanted to make sure I did it right. The projected high temps worried me, so I took 2 salt tabs before the race. Gatorade, GU and a salt tab in each transition. I had a GU on the bike, but did not take it. Drank about 16oz. on the bike, and about 4 oz. at the water point on the run. It all seemed to work well, but we were finished before the day got too hot.

Overall I’m happy with this race and glad I was able to improve by 2 minutes.

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New Year Goals and Resolutions — 2013

Resolutions are different from goals. Resolutions are about the journey, and goals are about the destination. I’m only listing my goals here, because most of the resolutions are too private to talk about in a blog:

Happy New Year!
My Goals for 2013:
1. Complete my dissertation and graduate by May, 2013.
2. No lost days due to injury.
3. I will not sacrifice form to speed and distance.
4. Complete at least one indoor triathlon.
5. Complete the Chambersburg Half Marathon on March 9, 2013.
6. Complete the American Odyssey Relay, Gettysburg to Washington DC on April 26, 2013.
7. Complete the Bob Potts Marathon on May 26, 2013 to celebrate my 51st birthday.
8. Complete two sprint triathlons.
9. Complete the Marine Corps Marathon on Oct. 27, 2013.
10. Accept “rest” as a valid component of training – and use it.
11. Lose 17 lbs. (down to 155) and maintain.
12. PR at 10K – >50:00
13. PR at ½ Marathon – >2:00:00
14. I will eat like an athlete, not a college student.

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Welcome to my New Blog!

Today I jump a little further forward into the 21st century by starting my own blog. I have no idea what I’ll put here or whether or not it will be worth reading, but we’lll see. I plan to talking about my dissertation, my training plans, and whatever else occurs to me.

You are welcome to contribute to anyhting I post, but let’s keep it civil and polite. Disagreements between friends are fine, but let’s just keep our tempers in check. I will delete and ban you if you get too offensive.

We’ll see how this goes — Welcome!

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