Sunday, July 17, 2011

TriRock Seattle Race Report

By Mike

I ran the TriRock Seattle Olympic race today with Lindsay (not exactly an Olympic but close -- 1500M swim, 23mi bike, 6mi run). A few days before the race Lindsay asked how I was able to do a 1:35 half marathon last Sunday (the 10th) on so little training (10-15 miles a week for last 5-6 weeks or so). I don't remember my exact answer but I do remember saying I was paying for it this week. It's hard to recover from a race or near-race effort with so little training, especially with so little intense training. I was thinking I might just take it (intentionally) easy this race so as to not risk sacrificing any training.

First race with the new wetsuit. The swim was a 3-segment triangle. Started off and felt pretty good on the first segment. Found some feet for most of first segment but some person came out of nowhere with a washing machine style kick and threw me off my rhythm. Lost my feet but caught on to this person instead. Was tough to stay on but I managed. Don't know what my time was at the first turn buoy but I checked somewhere along the middle section and my watch said 11:12. Thought I was making some great time even though I didn't feel all that strong. Did some rough math in my head and thought I could come in like ~27-28 minutes which would be pretty good for me. I lost my feet for a quick second and drifted back though still had the swimmer in sight when I popped my head out of the water. I just couldn't accelerate back up however. Was really starting to feel it and swam much of the 2nd leg solo. At the 2nd turn buoy I glanced at my watch and saw 20:50. Was really starting to feel it now. Struggled the last section and came out of the water in 33:xx. I started strong but just faded.

"Wobbly" experience. Took me a while to get stable. Not my finest T1.

Started off and noted how my heart rate just stabilized around 139bpm. Definitely very low for me. Just felt flat... couldn't put out anything more with the exception of a few hills where I pushed a bit harder. Dropped my chain around mile 15 just before one of the climbs (so knew it was going to happen too). Unlike 99.9% of the time I couldn't get it back on with just a simple chainring upshift. Had to get off the bike and reset it and then go back for the climb. Got passed by a whole mess of people. I was averaging around 19-19.5 mph which again is just plain slow for me... it was quite impressive given the hills and low 140bpm heart rates... we're talking sub-IM pacing here. Started to feel a little better around mile 18-19 but decided to keep the effort levels mostly constant and not bury myself and sacrifice another week of training and possibly the Seafair race the following week. Came in around 1:09 off the bike.

Brief and uneventful. Wasn't trying too hard by this point though.

Started the run glad to get off the bike and wondering if I could match my half-marathon pace from last week (sub 7:20). Started mile 1 with a low 7 pace. Thinking to myself it might be possible since I felt pretty good and my heart rate came up nicely to the 160s. The effort started to feel harder and harder though. About 100m after mile 1 my left calf and shin started to really hurt BAD. It was like I had just done the half-marathon yesterday. Slowed to a walk and then to a complete stop several times in miles 2 and 3. My leg "warmed up" a bit mile 4 (maybe it was the endorphins killing the pain) and felt like I could push again but decided to just keep it easy instead. Mile 5 came around and decided to give it one final push. Run time was ~50:xx or so for a 8:13 pace.

Overall time was a 2:37... horrible race but solid training day (well minus the stopping and walking parts). 2011 will need to a be a rebuilding year. I haven't done much of anything until June and it's been hard to start a normal training program in the middle of race season. I have a race next weekend but I probably won't go full force even if I do recover. I'd like to complete 4 solid weeks of training at 8+ hours a week before I start thinking about truly "racing".


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