If you follow me on twitter, you know that I raced a triathlon for the first time since 2009 on Sunday. I picked a sprint distance race to “test the waters” and remind myself what I need to focus on for the rest of the season. Besides, small races are FUN! This race is the biggest fundraiser Houston Racing Triathlon Club does so it was great to race with so many friendly faces.
SWIM- 300M pool swim- I have mixed feelings about pool swims, but this one was pretty well managed. You were seeded according to your projected swim pace, and I was fortunate in that I didn’t hit any “traffic” in the water. They started people at 10 second intervals and you went down and back in each lane before going under the lane rope to the next lane. I could see some back up in the lane in front of me (people walking instead of swimming), and I heard later there was some backup behind me, but I was able to cruise through the swim with no incidents (a BIG thank you to the person in front of me who followed the rules and let me pass at the wall). I wasn’t thrilled with my time, but considering I’ve only been swimming again for about a month and then only about once a week, it’s not too bad.
300M: 5:58 (includes some walk/run/sliding from the pool to the timing mats)
T1: as seen above, there was a small run from the pool to transition which is included in the T1 time: 1:18
BIKE- 12miles- The bike course is a flat, out and back route, and the roads were decent. There was no marshall/officer/directional sign at the final right hand turn of the course and unfortunately, some people went the wrong way. Thankfully there was someone not too far in front of me so I could see where they went and quickly recognized the road we came out on. Katy, TX is known for being flat and windy- thankfully on Sunday it was just flat with minimal wind. Not that it helped my time—biking is not my strength and it was made worse by something wonky with my bike (random gear changes/getting stuck between gears- lovely!).
Taken coming into transition- yes, I leave my shoes clipped in when I dismount hence my heel coming out of my shoe in this picture!
Bike: 38:36 (19.4 mph)
T2: 0:46 (sec)- The speed laces on my left shoe were too tight, and I couldn’t get the shoe on- oops!
RUN- 3 miles- They changed the run course this year to avoid crossing a major highway. This kept the route through the neighborhood close to the park and meant good SHADE trees for most of the route. It did mean all pavement, but there was a good mix of concrete and blacktop which is at least a little more forgiving than all concrete. There were 2 aid stations on the run which is great for a short course! The station at mile 2 (go Luke’s Locker) had ice sponges which made a huge difference for me. I was carrying my own water, but an icy squeeze on the back of my neck made all the difference!
Photos taken about 4/10ths of a mile from the finish- Pic 1- looking good, pic 2- form implosion- seriously, I need to work on that stat!
Run: 23:44/ 7:55 pace
OVERALL: 1:10:24– 2/10 AG– 47/216 overall
There’s a really good post-race party with food and beverages, but B + I headed out since it was early enough to make our church’s worship service. There were a few issues with the race logistics, but the race directors did a good job of fixing them ASAP! This is a good small race and definitely a winner for first-timers! For me, it was a good fitness test and definitely gave me some direction for the rest of my training. It also fueled my desire for a new bike which is perhaps is a downside- at least in B’s book!
Random tidbit: Most interesting thing seen on the course? A participant being arrested for cussing out a sheriff on the bike course! Don’t mess with Texas (or her sheriffs)!