Monday, June 09, 2008

San Jose Triathlon 2hrs 28 Mins

I am very pleased with this time, I was told I could expect to go up to fifteen minutes shorter at San Jose than at Wildflower, so cutting twenty minutes from my Wildflower time was very satisfying indeed. There are reasons - San Jose is much flatter, there is only one steep climb on the bike, and the run is pretty flat. Also, the swim is 250 metres shorter than a normal Olympic distance swim, not that that’s a whole lot, but it knocks a few minutes of the swim.
That said, the swim was a pain in the ass, I went off a little too fast, and had to slow down, I also veered off course a few times on the circular course, and my goggles let in some water on the right side which is very annoying and makes it hard to sight the course buoys. I was glad to get out of the water, but my swimming is strong and I should be getting better times. 22 minutes is fine, but in the pool I can knock at least 3 minutes off that. I need to be more aggressive and less intimidated. I was thrilled with my bike ride; I did the 40k in 1:10, and managed to keep up with the time trial bikes which are much more aero-dynamic than a normal road bike. On the one hill I zipped by the TT bikes, but I was head to head with the same group of riders on the flats (most of the course). The run however, was a bitch. I made a big mistake the day before by going for a ride with some friends and overdoing it. I went 10 miles out not realising I had a lot of climbing on the way back. That was a dumb move. After pushing hard on the ride, my legs felt like concrete on the run. I did the 10K in 50 minutes but I was hoping to get closer to 46 minutes. It’s a lesson learned. Taper properly. Lack of sleep was also a factor, as I also had to get up at 4:30AM to drive 60 miles to be on time for the 7:20AM start time. For a variety of reasons I hadn't gotten a solid nights sleep all week none of which helped. Despite all that at the end of the day coming in under 2:30 was thrilling. I was 34th in my age group and 180th overall. It was a very cool event, 1500 people and very well organised. There is such a positive vibe at these events that it carries through for a few days afterwards.

In an aside, one of my friends, who lives in the US was back in Ireland and did the Wicklow 200K bike ride, and said that while the ride was spectacular, it was the worst organised event he has ever done. No rest station until 100K, and then it didn’t have any energy drinks or gels, and at the beginning only one machine to check in over a 1000 people. Any Irish readers out there do the ride? What was your experience?

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