Had a great race this morning. The Loggerhead Triathlon is the most local race for me taking place at Carlin Park. Woke up this morning at 3:16 for some odd reason. My alarm was set for 4:15. I posted on Facebook last night that I wanted to win my age group today and that was the mission.
Woke up this morning thinking, “This is it. You’ve gotto give it everything.” Got to transition early and got a parking space right outside the fence. Racked my bike second to the dreamt-for end spot and set up my towel. Today, nutritionally, I had planned on a Gatorade G2 mix on the bike, However when I arrived at the transition, I realized I had left the Aero Bottle at home in the fridge. I had enough time to go home and get it but it wasn’t a huge loss. I was fealing good. My legs were loose and I was ready to go.
Got body marked and the guy doing it stabbed the marker into my skin and it got everywhere. O well they are the volunteers that make the race possible. Walked down to the swim. No wind, almost no waves. This was going to be a good race.
For once, the national anthem singer was actually good and 10 seconds later the elite’s went off. John Reback would end up winning the race.
Now it was time for my wave. The horn blew and we ran out into the water. At the buoy’s the water was only about 6ft deep so we walked out most of the way. Walking is mostimes just as fast as the guy’s in front swimming. Trying to make the turn I was using the breast stroke but was getting kicked and clawed all around. I wasn’t even moving because of the constant kicks and arms slamming me in the back of the head. So, I dove down under all the people and swam right over the buoy line and got free. The open water felt great. I was swimming a great pace. Not getting too tired but still moving fast. I swam the 3/8ths mile in just under 11 minutes. (Split times have not yet been posted on a website).
From there I ran through the transition, strapped my helmet on, put on my oakleys, put a bottle in my back along with a gel and took off. Got on the bike and slipped into my shoes, (called a flying start, if you’re good enough, always use it) and took off down A1A. There were a lot of spectators here today. None for me unfortunately. Shot up Carlin Mountain at 21mph, lowered the gear and got into full AERO mode. “Austin what is this full AERO mode?” Even though I don’t have an Aero helmet…yet, I lowered my head down as close to the bars as I could and looked straight down at my front wheel. The smooth shell of my Specialized Propero carbon helmet, would cut through the air better than my face. LOOKING DOWN AT YOUR FRONT WHEEL, ESPECIALLY IN A MOSTLY BEGINNER’S SPRINT TRIATHLON IS VERY DANGEROUS. WITHOUT PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE WITH TIME TRIALING, PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMP. Every few seconds I’d glance up to see up ahead, but I’d use the ability of my eyes to move upward and try to minimize having to pick up my head. I also got up on the front of the seat, not only a more aerodynamic position, but it also move’s your legs directly over the pedals making each stroke much much more powerful. On the bike I was feeling pretty good, my legs weren’t too tired. I knew I was still putting out too much tho. My best 5k is 22 minutes. That’s not good enough to back off on the bike and rely on running your best 5k possible in the heat and after 13 miles on the bike. So I kept the pace on the bike and established a FIRM lead over the rest of my competitores.
Pulling back into transition, I had just put out 24mph for 13miles. My legs were tired I could feel it but not overwhelmingly. They had some good stuff left. However my calfs were slightly cramped and my heart rate was through the roof. The past few days have been a brand new discovery. My max heart rate is EXTREMELY…extremly high. And my performance heart rate in a sprint race in 80-90%. My heart felt like it was going to beat right out of my chest. This is what I need to work on. I decided to take a few brakes along the way trying to get my HR down. Didn’t work. I slowed down at the turnaround of the 5K course and walked around the circle sipping some water. There we go, my heart rate dropped a little bit and I was ready to go. I still kept stopping a few times on the way back but I knew as soon as I left the last water station I was taking off. I got to the last water station, by my previous calculations, I should be finishing right now. I ran down the half mile of A1A quickly and with a sublime control. Made the turn onto the civic center road. and saw the finish. I always finish with a sprint but today I was going to wait till 100m to go. Saw my buddy, and took off. Crossed the finish line with my hands up in the air flashing the number 1.