Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Chicago Triathlon

Well, the Accenture Chicago Triathlon was DEFINITELY a fun race, though as usual everything was NOT perfect. Here's the quick synopsis:

Overall Rank 1301/4089. That's top 32%. Pretty good, but this includes EVERYONE. Over 4000 in the main event!
Class Rank 237/519. 46th percentile in my age group (of 519!).
Swim 29:28. Seems slow but there was a 1/2K run to transition included. I was out of the water around 26:00. My HR was high the whole time I swam and I regretted not wearing my wetsuit for the buoyancy.
Swim Rank 869. 21st percentile on the swim. I swam 2 min slower than expected but this was not an A race so that's ok. Still considering I've done ZERO swimming intensity this bodes well for my future swimming speed!
Trans1 2:08. Excellent! I was very pleased with my Transitions this race, just like Wildflower. Expedient but not rushed. Usually the extra distance to cover is included in your transition time not your swim split......
Bike 1:15:22. Definitely my official 40K Split PR. My goal was for under 1:10 but that was without the WIND factored in. They don't call it the windy city for nothing! My HR was definitely indicating that I was dehydrated from going out two nights before. Sometimes my HR is just high during the swim from nerves ( I know I'm not nuking myself straight away like the old days ) but I could tell that was not the case after 20min on the bike.
Bike Rank 1289. 31st Percentile on the Bike! I was FREAKING OUT when at the first turn around my computer said I was averaging only 17.5 or so. We were getting hit by a constant vicious crosswind that made the outbound legs SLOW going. On the bright side it was fun going 28mph easy on the inbound legs :)

Bike MPH 19.7. Pretty Zippy. No taper and travelling recovery still left me fairly fit!
Trans2 2:43. Nice! I think my transition times are even more impressive considering the MASSIVE size of the transition area. The biggest I've seen!
Run 59:21. My goals for this split were way off. Of course I was as usual making my predictions assuming I'd be rested and tapered. I wanted to be closer to 50 min (which I can do easily in training) but I struggled here a bit.
I made a couple of rookie mistakes at the first couple refill stations on the run. Before I even looked into the cups I was handed I downed almost full cups 2x before I started paying attention. Both times resulted in a couple minutes of walking to alleviate bitter stomach cramps. I only took 4 small sips of Gatorade and one gel the rest of the run and believe I picked it up to 8:45 the last 4 mi and ran the last 1.2mi under 8min/mi. pace. I definitely had energy to finish strong.
It's worth noting that I definitely "drafted" behind a big tall guy to help break the wind on the run return leg it was so windy!
Run Rank 2213. 54th Percentile on the Run. Blaugh! STILL I can see the last years running focus has paid off a LOT! I think some of the improvements have come from better pacing, and not being too destroyed when it comes time to run, but still I'm AMAZED at the improvements I've made running while still improving more gradually biking and swimming.
Run Pace 09:34. A year ago there's no WAY I would have believed this was possible. Still if I had been more tapered and recovered I should have been pushing 8:30 pace. I'm still thinking it's possible to run 8:30s in Austin if my Peak phase goes well!
Sex Rank 1122/2804. 40th Percentile even among men!
Final 2:49:03. 30minutes faster than Wildflower! I had respectable showings in all my disciplines and set a PR for this distance. Now to match that time at Wildflower next year.....

  • Sunscreen & body glide @ available at swim start.
  • Host hotel was AWESOME!
  • 100% Extended Climb Free!
  • Water temp and Weather were GREAT! (Apparently this was lucky)
  • Not allowing athletes back into transition immediately after finishing.
  • Not allowing athletes back into transition at 11AM as the program stated.
  • Swim start was FAR from transition!
  • Having people ride left and pass right on the bike course when we're in the USA and the rules in our race packets said RIDE right and pass left!
  • No aid station on the bike course.

I placed in the top 3rd overall, biked 20mph and ran under 10min/mi which are all good things. This was a B race and I was going for experience, so no complaints but I will look forward to Austin where I will NOT Be doing any visiting with friends the 2 nights before the race.
All in all a great experience. I will be back next year. Justin placed top 15% in the sprint and will be doing the International distance next year. Ahu!!!!!!

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