2011 Season Results

2011 Mercer 1/2 Marathon - 1:39:14 - 7:34/mile
2011 Issaquah Triathlon - 2nd AG, 8th OA
2011 Ironman Coeur d'Alene - 11:45:17
2011 Seafair Olympic Triathlon - 5th AG @ 2:07:26
2011 Lake Stevens Ironman 70.3 - 5:24:17
2011 Beaver Lake Triathlon - 2nd AG
2011 Cottage Lake Triathlon - 1st AG, 3rd OA
2011 Kirkland Triathlon - 4th AG
2011 Issaquah Salmon Days 10K - 42:47 6:53/mile

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

2011 Beaver Lake Triathlon

Bringing home some hardware from the place that started is all…. And an example of why you never, ever give up!

The summery:

Beautiful weather for the BLT this year! I started this sport 5 years ago and never thought I would be very competitive… today I proved I was wrong.  I wasn’t on the swim team in collage, I didn’t run cross country in high school.. and I never really had much in the way of athleticism... I’m just not “that guy”… I was the computer geek kid who got really fat in collage eating too many pints of Ben and Jerry’s while programing late at night and trying to figure out why cheerleaders didn’t like geeks.  So… today I proved that if I can do this, anyone can.  If you are thinking of picking up this crazy sport of triathlon and think you don’t have the body type, aren’t athletic enough, can’t swim, can’t run, etc… well, know that you can overcome all that with some discipline, hard work, pain, and a good team to train and learn with.  It won’t happen overnight.. but give it a few years (and a ridiculous amount of money) and you can stand on the podium and see your name near the top of the finishers list (and you can even complete the swim without the breast stroke and drinking half the lake!)  So how did it go at the BLT?  I raced in the elite wave for the first time and managed to pull off 2nd AG and 15th OA (and this was the 3rd consecutive sprint distance race I snagged 2nd(Black Diamond and Issaquah) so I guess I can’t say it was just a fluke anymore.(and I raced BLT on 7 days rest from a 5:24 performance at Lake Stevens 70.3)  There are still plenty of guys out there that are way faster than me.. no question… but after a few years of learning and training I realize I have reached a level in this crazy sport I never dreamed was possible and it’s so much fun!  So… never give up and never stop… ever.

The long boring race details (so I can pull them out and read them next year…)  .seriously.. if you are reading the below then you have too much time on your hands.. go ride your bike instead.

The Beaver Lake race is where my passion for this silly sport all got started back in 2008.  That’s the year I decided to do the race two days before the event.. showed up that morning, registered, then my friend Kevin told me to go set up my “transition”… I looked at him and said “my what?”  I really had no idea what I was doing… couldn’t swim (I swam on my back the entire way), I was decent on my bike, and you would be really generous if you called what I did that day a “jog.”  I remember looking at the top finishers and their times thinking I could never be that competitive… I wasn’t very athletic and really only knew how to cycle… and there guys showed up with strange looing bikes and racing in a position that looked miserably uncomfortable.  Well… I did cross the finish line that day (I think I almost cried when I did!) and I fell in love with the sport… but I figured I would never get to the point where I would be competitive… I guess I was wrong.

Pre-Race – Normal drill.. wake up , breakfast to plan, jump in the car, show up early.  Warmed up and everything was coming together according to plan.. but then I had to go change things.  I realized the elite wave was really just a chance for the top racers to have a clean race without any wave traffic… so the elite wave was still racing for the normal AG divisions.  I’ve never gone in the elite wave.. intimidated of looking like a fool I suppose.. but I figured I have finished 2ND AG in my last two sprint races and if the guys I was racing against for a podium spot were getting the advantage of the elite wave then I wanted in.  I ran over to the check in table and asked if I could switch to the elite wave.. they said sure… I was assigned a new number… #3.. wow.. so now I guess I better put together a race worthy of a super low numberSmile.  Then I realize that instead of 40 min before my wave I now have 15 min before the elite wave.. and I still need to move my bike to the elite rack.. yikes.. a little panic but I moved, got set up.. threw on the wetsuit and I was all set to either look like a total fool racing with pros or I was set to have a good race…

Swim: 6:09 -   (3rdAG/61st OA)

Standing at the start of the swim with the other 25+ elite wave racers was certainly different.. the thing I noticed most is that all the other guys looked like they were about 20 pounds lighter than me and about a foot taller… yikes.. this should be interesting.  Gun goes off and I decide to swim the fastest 400 yards of my life (okay.. it’s the BLT.. so it’s more like 350 yards!)… at the first turn I had settled into a nice draft off a guy and I was really surprised that we were in the lead pack of 4 or 5 guys.. crazy.  At the second turn I finally started to feel the effects of going as hard as possible and not really doing much swim training the last two months so my stroke got sloppy and I was in desperate need of oxygen.  Headed towards swim out I could see the guys in the lead who had accelerated off the front… they went into T1 and it seemed like I was out there all alone.. I was still 75 yards out and there was no one else left in front of me… I really was going to be that guy in the elite wave that everyone claps for because he finally got out of the water and as he runs by they whisper “what the heck was that guy doing in the elite wave?”  I finally get to shore, run out and I hear a few people start to clap for me.. in my head it was a golf clap not a “you rock” clap… Oh joy.

T1: 1:12 (1st AG)

I run up into T1 and notice quite a few guys still running around the TA.. sweet… I’m not out of this yet… I guess I wasn’t as far back as I thought.  I run to my bike, wetsuit off, glasses on, helmet on, set into shoes, run out of T1…. Absolutely flawless execution of the plan and the numbers back that up… 2nd fastest T1 in the elite wave (someone was 1 second faster.)

Bike: 0:39:09 21.15mph   (4thAG/15thOA)

I was most worried about my ability to perform on the bike since my legs hadn’t really recovered from hammering out a 2:42 at the Lake Steven’s race just 6 days earlier.  The first 5 minutes on the bike were about getting my HR down and settling in..  my HR and clip_image002breathing were sky high after the swim and I needed to get things back under control.  After a bit things normalized and I brought the power up.  Passed a few guys and then I went back and forth with a guy in my AG… and as far as I knew he was the only 35-39 in the elite wave.  We screamed down the big hill and I passed a few more guys and hammered it out to the big climb. I’d rate my climb as “okay”… this is where I really noticed that my legs weren’t recovered from last weekend’s race and I just didn’t have the power and acceleration needed but I hung in there.  I was passed by most of the guys I had passed earlier and that of course included the guy in my AG but we finally hit the top of the hill and I was able to pick things up a bit.  Heading towards T2 I chased down 3 guys and thankfully one of them was the 35 year old I was racing… so hammered into T2 in 1st place and I realized I was actually hanging with the elite guys.  Average watts came in lower than planned at 247w.. was aiming for the 260-270 range but the legs didn’t have any more today.

T2: :38 (1st AG)

Dismount, helmet off, shoes on, hat on and run run run.  Flawless again and this time I was the fastest elite T2 time. 

RUN: 0:30:38  7:06/mile   (4thAG/40thOA)

Heading out of T2 I knew I was in for a long (4.3 mile) and painful run but I was really in this thing and had a good shot at getting on the podium so I had to just find the pace that would get me to the finish line without passing out at mile 3.  The guy I was racing followed me out of T2 and stayed right on my heals… he seems perfectly content just sitting there waiting to make his move and when we got to the little embankment you need to climb up to get out of the park I moved over and left him pass.  I didn’t want to do this but I experiencing the early signs of cramping in my quad and I knew that sprinting up that little hill might just do me in.. so I let him by and I climbed up conservatively which was the right thing to do.  The course finally started downhill and that allowed my body to recover from the bike and get into run mode… the cramping was gone and now I just had to hang in there as best I could.   I was about 30 yards behind the 35 year old and I actually started gaining on him a clip_image004bit… hmmmm.. maybe this will work out after all.  Well… nope… this wasn’t the day for that as he eventually run off out of reach.   The rest of the run went fine… I kept a steady pace throughout and I was on the verge of passing out but I was staying to the good side of that outcome.. legs felt good and the brain was telling me I should be sitting on the sofa with a beer not out trying to kill myself.  The Garmin says I clicked off Mile #1 at 7:27 and picked it up a bit to a 7:15ish pace for the rest of the race… slightly slower than my normal 5K race pace but that’s probably about right… since this isn’t a 5k!  I had planned to go all out at the 4 mile mark which meant 1/3 of a mile at all-out sprint speed.  I wasn’t sure my legs, lungs, and heart were up for that but I have been learning to push myself further and so why not go for it.  I hit the 4 mile line and kicked it up… surprisingly I felt great… ran sub 6 for the last 1/3 mile and didn’t let up at all.  I wanted to finish strong but didn’t think it really mattered.. the 1st place guy was out of reach and I didn’t think there were any other 35-39’s in my wave.. and I hadn’t heard anyone coming behind me.  I sprinted into the park and across the finish line… a very different experience than the first time I did this race!.. there is nothing like finding that finish line!  I crossed and stopped to catch my breath and some guy puts his arm around me and says “awesome race”… I had no idea who this guy was.. but he then tells me he was in my AG and had been tracking me down for the last mile and he thought he had me till I started my final sprint and he just couldn’t make the pass.  So how close was he?.... he missed catching me by 1 second. Had I let up even a little bit at the finish or started my sprint a second later he would have caught me… so never give up.


OA  1:17:47 – 2nd AG / 15th OA (9th Elite wave)

I ended up crossing the line in 9th place overall in the elite wave (15th OA for the race as 6 people in the AG waves were faster) and I had a solid performance on some tired and sore legs.  Most importantly.. I went off with the elite wave without embarrassing myself.. and of course I had a blast out there on the course.  So now I’ve snagged 2nd place in my last three sprints… 1st place continues to elude by that really doesn’t bother me one bit… one day it will happen(maybe when I am 70 and the only guy in my wave!) and until then I am going to keep learning and training.  I’m not sure what’s next… our first baby is due in a few weeks so his arrival will  determine my race schedule this fall. and yes, I have already started planning his first kid’s triathlon Smile.


Friday, October 28, 2011

Something new… CycleCross!

So I came up with something new this year to help me in stay in shape during the off season… which is usually when I gain too much weight and really don’t even want to look at my bike or my running shoes.  So… I went off to Mr. Crampy’s and come home with the new Redline Conquest Team.. yummy!  I am still getting use to a cross bike and hope to do my first race soon(finding time with the new baby adds to the challenge.)  Riding the cross bike is certainly a different feeling… for the last five years anything but asphalt under my tires meant that really bad things were about to happen.  I will post back after my first cyclecross race (which likely means my first few crashes.)

WP_000344 (2)WP_000343 (2)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

2011 Issaquah Salmon Days 10K

October 2nd, 2011

Here’s a fun little race to finish out the race season… and strangely it was my first “run only” 10K.  My son Kayson was born two weeks before this race and our new little addition to the Taylor family has been consuming all my time… so this race was purely a “wake up and go do it without much thinking” kind of event… my favorite!  The Issaquah 10K course is mostly flat (at least they compared to some of the other course around here) and is part of the big Issaquah Salmon Day’s festival… celebrating the return of the amazing Salmon.  Anyway… on with the race…

Typical breakfast then met up with my teammate James to carpool to the race.  Registered, then sat around chatting with teammates and then a little warm up.  Didn’t feel great after the warm up… blah.. oh well.  Race time finally comes and James and I are up front… Gun goes off and we are running… and I can tell I am running WAY too fast but didn’t really do anything to slow down.  At mile #1 I see Coach Jill cheering us on and I am still about 15 feet behind James.. which is a really bad sign since he runs much faster.  Mile one clicks by at 6:10… opps.. way too fast.  things when fine till mile 2.5ish.. it’s a bit uphill along a trail.. really started to feel the effects of going to hard on mile one.  Finally turned around at mile 3 and I recovered a bit as we headed back to the finish.  Around mile 5 I remembered that 6.2 miles is actually not a short distance to be running at sprint pace and I was really really looking forward to the finish line!  Pace stayed about the same to the finish.. managed to sprint the last 50 yards to prevent a few people from passing me.  Crossed the line and thought I was going to lose my breakfast.  That really hurt!  I went sub 7’s and I did PR for a 10K but all the other 10K’s I have run were preceded by a swim/bike.. but I like every small victory I can getSmile.

The numbers:

Time: 42:47
8th AG / 53rd OA
Average pace: 6:54

Mile 1 6:10
Mile 2 6:40
Mile 3 7:03
Mile 4 7:09
Mile 5 6:54
Mile 6 6:56
Mile 6.2 6:42 pace

Monday, July 25, 2011

2011 Seafair Olympic Triathlon

1 mile swim | 20 mile bike  |  6.4ish mile run
July 24th, 2011

Olympic distance races have always been a bit of challenge for me… I just have a difficult time figuring out how to pace this distance.  This race was exactly 4 weeks after IMCdA so it seemed like a good step back as a prep for Lake Stevens 70.3 next month and I couldn’t get over to Chelanman this year… so the seafair oly fit the schedule.  I hadn’t raced the Seafair sprint course and the oly was new this year… so lots of unknowns.. but sounded like fun.  Not a ton of goals going into the race other than putting together a solid race and crossing the finish line with nothing left (something I admittedly didn’t do at IMCdA.)

Wake up 3:45a, eat, and head out to Seward park.  Got a close parking spot 1 block from transition (really not sure where people park that show up at 6a!), let someone scribble some numbers on my legs and then set up transition which only took a few minutes.  This gave me plenty of time to enjoy the beautiful morning, chat with Sean from Mr. Crampy’s who was racing the sprint (and went 1AG/6OA.)  Went for a quick warm up run, threw on the wetsuit and jumped in for a warm up swim.  Water was nice.. not as warm as Sammamish right now.. but still nice.  Elites go off at 6:30 and 35-39M are the 4th wave… so here we go.

SWIM (1 mile): 26:01  (105th/383 AO)

Wave starts.. so about 50 in my group, double loop.  There were a few areas that looked like things could get tight as we started the second loop but wasn’t an issue.  Overall I felt fine on the swim, paced it correctly and felt strong.. or at least as strong as I was going to feel without a ton of swim training the last 4 weeks. Thing got a little crowded on the second loop as the Sprint waves had started going off.. so we had to deal with a lot of people on the swim course (but after the IMCdA swim I felt like I had the lake to myself!)  Came out of the water checked my watch and knew I was way back off the lead pack but I would try to make up a few places on the bike.  Swim felt good but the numbers said it was wasn’t all that great.

T1: 1:32  (2nd/51 AG - 18th/383 AO)
I typically have very quick transitions… wetsuit off, helmet on, step into shoes, glasses on, grab bike, run… bike starts dragging??  Rear wheel locks up.  I rolled the bike back and some grass came out.. figured must have just been some grass.. start running.. wheel locks up again???.. clear, run, locks up again… I wasn’t sure what was going on so I just picked up my bike and started running (not sure what I was thinking here… cycle cross?  Run the entire bike?)  I got out of T1 (so now any time I waste on the problem is “bike time”.. brilliant! :-/) and rolled the bike forward on the pavement… wheel still locking up.  Before the race I checked everything out and everything was perfect… so I had no idea what was going on.  Locked up much harder than a brake rubbing.. the tire would not turn.. even if I tried to force it with my hand.  Now guys are running out of T1 passing me and I am standing there.  The spectators could see I was having issues and started yelling out suggestion… I finally spotted the issue… as I was running with the bike I rolled over a gel block in the grass… it stuck to the tire and rolled around and made its way into the very narrow clearance between my seat tube (which is curved along the rear wheel) and the rear tire.. Okay.. I’ll just grab it… nope.. even with my fingers I couldn’t get it out.. it was solidly stuck (which just didn’t seem possible.)  After wasting WAY too much time I just jump on and start pedaling and figure it will fix itself (bike must win over gelblock, right?).. and sure enough after a 100 yards everything felt fine and there didn’t seem to have any extra drag… but I wasted about 15-20 seconds in T1 and about 20-30 seconds on “bike” time working on this.  Even with the issues I had the 18th quickest T1 overall and 2nd quickest in my AG (someone was 1 second faster.) Opps.

BIKE: 52:15 (20 miles) (3rd/51 AG - 16/383 AO) 22.97mph(based on clock time) The bike was short for an Oly and it was mostly flat… a few rolling hills and some small short climbs.  I was targeting 235-245 watts for the ride.  The Oly course was the same as the sprint but we rode all the way to the east edge of Mercer island, turned around and rode to the west end of I 90 at Safeco/Qwest field (or whatever they call it now.)  Both turnarounds were at the bottom of hills.. oh joy.  Oh.. and lots of tunnels… loved it! There was a good wind blowing south.. so a headwind to start, cross wind on the i90 bridge, and a tailwind back to T2.  Nothing too eventful on the bike.  I hit my power numbers for most of the ride, didn’t get passed by anyone during the bike (always a good feeling,) and passed 4 or 5 guys in my AG.  3rd fasted bike in my AG (even with the gelblock issue time factored in) and made up a few spots from the swim.  Back to T2 I go.

T2: 1:08 (3rd/51AG – 19th/383 AO)  
Far less exciting than T1.  Bike racked, helmet off, shoes on, grab hat and go.

RUN: 46:30 12th/51AG – 71/383 AO – 7:15/mile (for 6.38m ish) 
I’m not a great runner.. the goal is always make up some time on the bike and then run as fast as I can and hope I find the finish line before the guys I passed on the bike can find me.…. And the oly distance gives the guys behind me a lot more time to catch me!  I felt good off the bike and settled in around a 7 min pace.. at some point Rusty flew by on his second lap.. he was flying!  Then I hit the first hill climb (yes, hill climb) just after 2 miles… didn’t mind it much and the downhill run made up for any lost time.. lap one done.. still hitting a 7/min pace.   I have to do this again!  I passed a 26 year old guy who decide to hitch on… I didn’t mind but the sound of footsteps on your heals is the sound I dread during the run, but at least I knew who it was.  Passed lots of people on the second loop but couldn’t tell if they were sprint or oly.. assumed most were sprint or first lap oly.  Then the dreaded moment happened… at mile 5ish.. just before the second hill climb I got passed by one guy Sad smile.. and of course the one person to run by is in my AG.  He was really moving and latching on wasn’t an option.  So…. I hammered out the second hill climb, shot down to the bottom and pushed hard with everything I had for the last ½ mile.  Very happy to cross the finish line.Smile  By far my best 10k… oh.. and the Garmin said closer to 6.4 miles…. Hmm…. That’s not a 10K even with my poor American conversion skills.  Shortly after crossing the finish line “Jonas” ran up to introduce himself after the race.. this is the guy who was running on my heals during the second lap.. he just wanted to say hi an thanks for pulling him along… very cool (although I think I needed the pull!)  Official results show 7:30 pace over 6.2.. Garmin shows closer to 7:15/mile over 6.38ish.   I’ll go with the Garmin Smile.

OVERALL:  2:07:26  4th/51 AG – 37/383 OA  (6th AG if you count the elite wave guys)

I had a blast, enjoyed the course and the beautiful day.  Best Oly performance so far and a good training race for Lake Stevens.  Oh.. and the Gel block… well it was still wedged in there after the race.. but now black, not red.  No longer in any contact with the rear tire… but it took some effort to get the smashed ball of energy free of my bike. Smile

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Beaver Lake Triathlon 2010

.25m swim / 13mi bike / 4.3mi run
Aug 21st, 2010

The return to the BLT Smile… in 2007 Kevin talked me into doing this race… with no training… and I mean NO training… I signed up the morning of the race and I had never done a triathlon… didn’t even really know how it all worked. I couldn’t swim freestyle, hadn’t put on a pair of running shoes in 2 years… all I knew how to do was bike… so I figured why not!  Three years later it finally worked out to put this race back on the schedule.. this time I showed up with a fancy red bike, fancy red running shoes, aero helmet, aero wheels, a power meter, a wetsuit and many other “tri geek” toys… let’s just say it’s been an expensive 3 years. Surprised smile  I didn’t spend much time training for BLT this year, after the Chelan ½IM I got busy and didn’t get in much training but that was okay, I wanted to take a very relaxed fun attitude into BLT.. this one was for fun, no expectations… well.. okay… I had a few… beat my 2007 time by A LOT!  Go sub 40:00 on the bike and run a sub 7 pace. 

PRE-RACE:  Woke up early, loaded up the car, picked up Kevin, and we were off.   Breakfast: bagel with PB, pop tart, EFS Pre-Race, and a Gu 30 min before the start.  Set up transition (I actually knew what that was this time!)  Warmed up and strolled over to the lake.  In 2007 I thought the swim looked impossible… this time around it looked really really short!

SWIM:  6:56

I hadn’t swam since Chelan and even at Chelan I felt slow… just haven’t found my swimming groove this year.  I started in wave #4… which wasn’t much different than starting in wave #1… the BLT course never really jams up.  Nothing too exciting out there, slower than I wanted to be but right where I expected to be.  Came out of the water feeling good… in 2007 I came out of the water after breast-stroking and laying on my back for 10 min about to puke and pass out right there on the beach.

T1:  1:27

Not super fast… I was slow getting the wetsuit off and my shoes didn’t go on as fast as normal (they are worn out and starting to lose shape… I picked up a new pair last week but didn’t want to race in them without a few more rides.).. but soon I was running out of T1 with my shiny red bike.

BIKE:  40:42  PACE: 20.43mph   (26/383 OA bike split)

The BLT bike course isn’t a leisure ride…  I think it’s the most difficult sprint bike course in the Seattle area.  The first mile I tried to take it easy and get the HR down… only to start hammering it on mile 2 and get the HR back up.  My goal was sub 40:00 which I knew would be difficult but I believed my legs could pull it off.  I passed quite a few people and realized the speed differential between me and some of the slower riders caused a few close calls.  Almost took a girl out at the bottom of the big hill but I managed to swerve to the outside of the cones to avoid a crash (didn’t make mr. Sheriff very happy, but I figured it was better than my face on pavement.  I hit the big climb feeling good but a little worried I had gone too hard too early… turned out I was just fine… I have ridden this hill a lot and I had my best climb up the beast… legs felt great and I was able to attack the entire length of the hill.  Kept the speed up on top as I rode back to T2… feeling good.  As T2 approached I realized I hadn’t been passed… not on the hill, not on the flats… things were looking good.  I looked at my time and sadly watched 40min tick by just as I turned into the park.. grrrr. 

T2:   0:47

I was a little slow dismounting and while running in T2 I was passed by a guy in my AG.  Dropped off the bike, threw on the shoes and headed out… re-passed the guy who passed me… never saw him again.

RUN: 31:20   PACE: 7:16      (61/383 OA Run)

The run started out on an uneven trail… I passed the 100 yard mark.. significant only because this is where I started walking in 2007 and almost passed out… no problems this time around.  The trail took us up a very short but very steep little hill… legs wanted to cramp but I slowed know to avoid that.  Finally got my legs under me and felt good… and I started passing people!  Not a big deal for most.. but I really can’t run and I am usually not passing ANYONE… and the other odd thing was that I wasn’t being passed by anyone…  Go me!!.. I can finally sort of run!  At the end of mile 2 I realized I wasn’t at the 1/2 point of the run and I was still running my 5K pace…. so I backed off the pace a bit… I hadn’t really thought about what pace to run for a 4.3 mile run.  I ran mile 3 way too slow… got passed by a guy in my AG and let him go… more of a mental breakdown than anything else… I felt good, just worried about running out of gas before the finish line.  I picked it up a bit for mile 4 but since I hadn’t done any recon of the course I had no idea how much further I really had to go to the finish… again.. more of a mental error.  Finally got back to the park and went into a full out sprint when I realized I was actually at the finish… felt great and I had plenty left in the tank.  I simply ran the second 1/2 of the course too slow out of fear of burning up.  Next year I am going to stick with my 5K pace… the extra 1.2 mile hurts, but it shouldn’t change the game as much as I let it. 

OVERALL: 1:21:13  AG: 5/26     OA 27/362

At the end of the race I realized I had only been passed by one person on the bike and run combined.. and that guy was of course in my AG… opps.  I snagged 5th AG and 27th OA… 1st-3rd AG were way out of reach, but 4th was within reach if I hadn’t let that guy sneak by and get so far head in the run.  I had a blast and really got to see how much I have improved in this silly little sport over the last 3 years.  Did I accomplish my goals?... let’s see… sub 40:00 on the bike… Nope.  Sub 7/min pace on the run… Nope.  Had fun… absolutely, and I tied for my best finish yet.  It was fun to return to the BLT 3 years later… once again with Kevin who talked me into doing this race the first time. As an added bonus some old friends I hadn’t seen in a while showed up and did the race… and my friend Maggie was living the dream I did back in 2007… her first triathlon.  She finished with a smile and said she was hooked on the sport… I know the feeling.   

Oh.. and just for fun… here’s my 2007 results compared to my 2010 results:

5.  Greg Taylor 1:21:13   0:06:56   55  1:27  0:40:42  0:47  26 0:31:20

31. Greg Taylor 1:47:22   0:10:09  325  3:18  0:46:50  1:57 222 0:45:07

Monday, June 7, 2010

2010 Issaquah Triathlon

Sprint – 1/4 swim / 14 mile bike / 5k run

This is our first Triathlon every year and it’s something I always look forward to. The course isn’t great, but it still a lot of fun. Just like last year, Angela decided to join me for the Duathlon… sIMG_2246he does the same race as me, but she skips the swim. This year was a bit different… Seattle hasn’t seem much of the sun this year… in fact it’s been cold and rainy and the days leading up to the race flooded Sammamish State park… so this was the first time I raced in the mud… and a mud fest it was!!!

Pre Race:

We woke up and headed out to the park. I had two pop-tarts pre-race and sipped on some Gatorade. I forgot to take my Gu 30 min before the race and I think I really could have used the extra energy. We set everything up, waded through the mud and puddles, and managed to find the new JFT2 team tent. I went for a warm up run, then tried to swim… just couldn’t stay in the water. I have a sleeveless wetsuit and my arms were just frozen.. so didn’t get much of a warm up in.

SWIM: 7:38

Not a great swim.. mainly because I was just so cold. My arms were frozen. No problem with face/head.. just my arms and it made my arms feel sluggish. Time to FINALLY purchase a full wetsuit. I didn’t have any problems with traffic.. didn’t get kicked and didn’t kick anyone… but I also didn’t find anyone to draft off of. Came out of the water feeling fine except for being really cold

T1: 1:38

Ran through the mud, wetsuit off, shoes on, glasses on, helmet on, go. Just as I was heading to the TA out I felt my helmet come imageunclipped. I stopped and leaned my bike against the fence and to snap my helmet (and Angela was right there headed out on the Du, so she was cheering my on)… helmet fixed, but now people are yelling at me that I dropped something… yep… my mini-aero bottle straw was laying in the mud about 5 feet back. I decided to go ahead and run back and grab it.. straw retrieved (covered in mud), and finally out of T1… longer that I had hoped.

BIKE: 40:50 22.1 mph

I had a rather uneventful bike.. things went well but I never managed to get my power up. My legs just felt sluggish from the cold swim and I just couldn’t turn them over as fast as normal, I never felt tired.. just sluggish. I was only passed by one person on the bike (I think it was Chris and he flew by like I was standing still!) so things went okay out there, but overall I didn’t feel like I had a great performance, but I do love the new bike and it performed flawlessly for this race. Luckily I managed to avoid any flats… 5 out of the 7 people I raced with ended up with flats. Bummer day. Back into T2 and back into the mud.

T2: 1:01

Nothing noteworthy… by this point I knew I wasn’t having my best race and I still felt a little sluggish in T2… but shoes on and I put on my muddy running hat and off I went. IMG_2248

RUN: 19:41

Feet were completely numb but that’s nothing new and didn’t bother me. I really wasn’t sure where I was headed since the course was just rerouted an hour before the race… parts of the run were super muddy and very slick and my Zoot’s don’t have a lot of traction. I managed to stay upright and the legs felt good. Turned out to be one of the best runs of my life and I was close to 7 min miles (I am a SLOW runner!) I crossed the finish line feeling good… maybe too good. I didn’t really push myself enough on this race and I recovered very quickly. Overall I am happy.. had a good race.. not great, but the conditions weren’t great either. Finished 13th in my AG, last year I was 19th. I had a great day racing with Angela who took 4th place in her AG in the DU. I was great seeing all my JFT2 teammates. Next race is in 2 weeks, 5 Mile Lake.

Age Group: 13th place out of 114

Overall: 57th Place out of 837


Monday, June 1, 2009

Issaquah Triathlon 2009

Sprint – 1/4 swim / 14 mile bike / 5k run

Saturday May 30th, 2009

I really look forward to this race every year.. maybe because it signals the beginning of triathlon4494_83349938822_551613822_2004740_6305753_n season in Seattle or maybe because it’s a course i ride on almost every week.  This years race was made even more special because my beautiful wife decided to race along side me:)… Angela signed up for the  Duathlon.. so she was doing the same race minus the swim.  We couldn't have asked for better weather! 

Alarm went off at 4am, eat pop tarts, throw gear in  car, throw wife in car, start driving.  We arrived at the park nice and early (i like being there EARLY) 4494_83349928822_551613822_2004738_656399_n and managed to be the first few people into  transition. Everything was set up, went on a warm up run, then a warm up swim… everything was looking good.  I had a bit of time to socialize with my teammates (www.fjt2.com) and talked Angela through the next 90 mins one more time… i knew she was going to do great!  I had long debated starting in the elite wave this year but a last minute change deleted the elite wave… so i was starting in my AG Wave #3. 

For the swim i lined up on the inside at the front.  Not sure what i was thinking.. I am not an elite swimmer and last time i was anywhere near the front i got run over, but i never liked the battle that 3581940332_0e3a17480a goes on in the middle of the pack so this seemed like a better idea. When the gun went off i swam inside a little further and managed to stay away from everyone.. in fact i had no contact at all at the start and I was able to focus on swimming vs. water polo.  I swam around the first marker buoy with a few guys then things opened back up during the long straight away.  I passed a few guys from my wave who had let up and clearly when out way too strong and then some traffic from the previous wave.  I rounded the final buoy which seemed to have come way too soon and picked things up for the final push to shore.  Soon i was on my feet and running into T1.  Swim seemed really short.. not sure what distance they had set up but i don’t think it was 1/4 mile.

SWIM: 6:07

As i ran through T1 to my bike i heard coach Jill yelling and cheering me on waiting for her bike relay to start. Found bike, wetsuit off, sunglasses on helmet on, shoes on, grab bike, run w/ bike.   I have always tried to make my transitions as efficient as possible… clearly you can win or lose a race in T1 and T2.  I have a process down and I try not to think in transition.. i simply “do”.  If i start to think i will second guess myself.  This is clearly working as i ended up with some great T1 and T2 times.

T1: 1:26

I mounted up my QRoo and headed out of the park.  I started a little slow trying to get my HR back down and under control while getting the legs warmed back up. A few minutes into the race my teammate Blake zipped by as well as a few guys going what seemed like 30+ with their WHOOP WHOOP rear discs… I was feeling slow out there on the course but i was racing my plan and i wasn’t about to 4494_83349863822_551613822_2004730_4938268_n panic.  As we left Issaquah i picked up the pace a bit more and started to go to work.  I arrived at the first hill and attacked according to plan.. things were going well, legs were feeling good.  After the hill i was lucky enough to  see Angela heading the other way.. she was smiling and said hi… that was a good sign things were going well for her.  I continued increasing my effort as i approached the u-turn and i managed to catch back up with Blake and other other guy.  I approached the second hill and again things went as planned… with the hill behind me it was time to push it all the way to the end.  My legs were feeling good and i was trading places with Blake and other rider for a few miles.  I would drop back 20 or so bike lengths and then somehow with no effort change i would be passing them. I was worried the mentally i kept pushing to pass them (and not following my plan) but the numbers were right on and i was consistent in my power.  I kept the speed up as much as possible towards the end of the bike… difficult to do with the narrow paths and some novice cyclist on IssTri2009 014 the course.  Soon i found myself back in the park and headed into T2… and the biggest surprise of all… as i approached the dismount line I looked over and saw this really cute girl also getting off her bike… it was Angela!… I had caught her just as we entered T2:)  Overall i was very happy with my bike. Going into the race i felt undertrained compared to last year and I was worried i wouldn’t beat last years time. 

BIKE: 37:46   23.83MPH

My body was certainly tired from the effort on the bike but i managed to fly through T2  Shoes off, Shoes on, helmet off… run run run.

T2 0:42

My run has been improving over the last year but i am still not a sprinter.  As i left T2 i felt my left calf start to cramp… grrrr  the first 200 yards i had to stop twice and rub it out.. didn’t help much but i just wanted to stop it from full on seizing up.  The last time i stopped was coming back to the park  from the little out and back they added this year.. i got a nice view of the 10 guys that were about to track me down!  I started running again and i even had a course worker comment that i looked like the rabbit being hunted by the dogs.. yikes!  Not much longer the pack of guys (including Blake) ran by and my moment of 4494_83349873822_551613822_2004731_2529245_nbeing near the front of my age group  in a race became a memory:).  The calf cramp went away and the rest of the run was uneventful… just listened to my fast breathing and my heart screaming for 20 mins… the finish line was a very welcoming place to be!  I finished 16th in age group (out of 116) and 67th overall (out of 929.)  I am happy with the results and my performance.

RUN: 22:20  7:28/m

TOTAL TIME:  1:08:21 
AG:16/116   OA: 67/929

Oh… and Angela had a great time with the Duathlon!  She even man4494_83349958822_551613822_2004744_431719_n aged to finish 2nd in her AG!!  It was so much fun being out there with her!

Next up: Cascades Edge Oly June 20th.