Well, another great race. They really put on a show at this one. Tons of people, and fairly well organized for this size race. Competition seemed even faster than last year, and results showed.
No warm up, which probably wasn't too smart, but I didn't feel like doing much of anything until I had to. Started out the swim uneventfully, and settled in. HR was low and steady, and I was taking it easy with no issues, which usually happen on the starts, so it was nice, for a while.
Almost halfway there were a few slower swimmers from the wave in front of me, and we got in a group for a minute. There was another swimmer on my left pretty close, and when I went for a breath on the left he accidentally slugged me right in the jaw. Pretty nice shot actually.
I knew it was an accident, so I didn't retaliate, and just moved a bit to the right.
Just after that, there was another guy who must have been trailing me from my wave and was on my right. Out of nowhere he just pushes my shoulder to move me over. Pretty deliberate. Not sure why he did that but I pushed back and got his head.
I didn't see him after that.
After the turn, the sun was directly in my eyes now, and my goggles were filled with water from all the battling, so I couldn't see shit on the side, and only a bit when I sighted forward. All the swimmers were so spread out now, and we had the other waves coming toward us too, so I just kept seeing tons of people all over the place. There was a guy on my left I was pacing with, so I just stayed next to him, because when my head was in the water, I could see him pretty well. Apparently, we both swam left and into the swimmers coming towards us. I pile drove somebody head on, and we hit pretty hard on our shoulders. Not cool. Obviously my fault, so I felt bad, but not bad enough to stop.
Rest of the swim was as expected.
I thought I had a decent swim, but maybe not, I'm not sure. It felt longer than last year, even though it was listed as the same distance. I was 6 minutes slower than last year, so not sure what's up with that yet.
On the bike, it was as expected. I screamed past everybody and was pacing myself pretty well. A few dudes thought they had something for me when I passed them, but once they showed their wheel I hammered down a bit more and left them behind. Bike was strong and solid. Next year the disc wheel and Zipps should put me on top. I wound up finishing 8th overall in the bike, and only 1 minute behind the overall fastest bike time. Next year. Next year...
I used my Speedfil hydration bottle for this, and I love it. I need to adjust the hose a bit, but it works very well. I didn't drink as much as I should have, and I knew it. My stomach wasn't feeling too well after the swim, probably because I drank so much lake water. I only ate one gel the whole race, and only drank equivalent to one water bottle the whole race too. Not good.
My transitions went quick, and I am getting better at these for sure. The run started out OK, and for the first couple miles I felt fine. My kid was there with me and was running with me for the first 2 minutes screaming at me the whole time. "no pain no gain" and "pain is temporary but failure lasts forever".
Little smart ass.
No wonder I call her "Mini Me".
Thankfully she couldn't follow me into the woods, and I settled in to what seemed like a decent pace, between 7 and 8 minutes per mile. The first couple miles felt alright, but after that my dehydration started catching up to me, and it was downright painful the entire remaining 4 miles. HR was skyrocketing, and it was all I could do to keep running and not walking. Man that hurt, once again. I really need to work on my running, and next year I'm chilling out on the biking and training for a marathon. That oughta do it. Everybody kept passing me on the run praising me for my bike ride, but still they were passing me on the run. Nothing like working backwards during the run. That sucks.
Overall, I did OK. My bike time was faster than last year, and so was my run, but my swim was much much slower, so I'm not sure what happened there yet. I got 8th out of 67 in my age group, and 69th overall out of 583. Time was 2:19. I beat Scott pretty handily, and another guy who I know from my daughter's tri team that does a lot of these including Ironmans, so I was happy about that.
Special props to Tony who did his first tri ever, and an Olympic one at that. Didn't have any issues and finished the whole thing no problem. Nice work dude.