Saturday, April 26, 2014

2014 Heart & Sole Race Report

Today was the 11th annual Heart & Sole sprint triathlon & my first triathlon of 2014.  The weather was absolutely fabulous this year.  Last year, the day before a cold front came through & we had a very cold race.  This year, a warm front moved through so the starting temperature was a sunny 48F at 8AM & warmed up very quickly from there.

Another difference is that they started the race earlier this year, 8AM instead of 9AM.  I liked this better since you get done & are home sooner.  We left the house about 6:20AM & by 7:10AM I was body marked, made a pit stop, setup transition & was sitting in the bleachers waiting.  I wore my BTC tri kit & only my yellow wind breaker on the bike.  I probably could have skipped the jacket as I got pretty warm climbing the hills.  

Overall the race was great & uneventful but there were a handful of odd things that happened to me during the race.

They race directors spoke at 7:45 & then we lined up for the swim.  I seeded myself as 'under 10 minutes'.  This & being a Wilson puts me at the end of the 'under 10's'.  The swimmers went off every 15 seconds so I started 23 minutes after the first swimmer.  I had a great goggle day - no leaks, etc.  Nothing worse than when you push off & get a goggle full of water.  The swim was uneventful for the first 300 yards.  I was passed in the first 100 yards but ended up passing the person back at the wall.

The real fun started around 300 yards - all of sudden there was a group of 4-5 swimmers.  Each of us was on each others toes & there was no way to pass.  Odd item #1 - I must have inappropriately touch the guy in front of me at least 3 times in the last 100 yards.  Although completely unintentional, I am sure he was pretty pissed at me by the end.   Sorry!

Surprisingly my time was faster than last year.  I was shocked because I felt like I really had to slow down the last 100 yards.  Unless I do no training next winter I am seeding myself 'under 9 minutes' next year.  400 yard Swim Time: 9m12s (3/4 in Age Group)

The first transition was uneventful & super quick.  T1 Time = 1:00 (1/4 in Age Group)

Last year I took it easy on the bike.  So my intention was to push a little harder on the bike even though I have not spent any significant time in the saddle this year.  With the exception of downtown Versailles, there was hardly any traffic on the bike course which was nice.  The course has some good hills on it & is pretty challenging.   The bikes were pretty spread out on the course.  

Odd item #2 - At one point I was alone for quite a while & decided I needed to clear my nose.  I blew out an awesome snot rocket & wouldn't you know there was a guy about to pass me!?!  I laughed & apologized profusely.   Oopsie daisies! 15 mile bike time = 55:32 (2/4 in Age Group)

Odd item #3 - I dismounted perfectly & was running my bike in - I am not sure if I slipped first & my front wheel turned in front of me or vice versa but I almost bit it in T2.  Fortunately I reacted quickly & picked up my bike to get it straight again.  Phew!  Even the volunteer cheered for my recovery.  T2 Time = 0:40 (4/4 in Age Group)

The run was tough for me this year.  It is labeled the toughest cross country course in the state.  It is mostly on grass but has a mix of asphalt, gravel & single track.  It is also pretty hilly.  I couldn't catch my breath for the first mile.  Taking the bike course a little harder made the run that much more challenging.  I think I took 4 walk breaks throughout the 5K.  As I came towards the finish I picked it up a little bit but my legs were heavy.  I think I gave it all I had today.   5K run time - 32:20 (4/4 in Age Group)

Overall Time =  1:38:47 (4/4 in Age Group).  This is over 3 1/2 minutes faster than last year.   Comparing the times for all the women's age groups - this years times are much faster than last year.  Apparently everyone was training hard this past winter! 
Best smiley ever!

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