Early Bird Triathlon…

22 May

This past long weekend in Ottawa was fantastic! We’ve had beautiful weather, up to 32°C and I’ve been doing lots of barbecuing! We’ve had steak, hamburgers, hot dogs and pork chops, all with lots of roasted veggies. On top of lots of good food and some nice cold beer, I also took part my first triathlon of the season. This weekend Somersault Events put on the Early Bird Triathlon at Carleton University. As a way to get ready for the season I competed in the Try-A-Tri, a 100m swim, 12km bike and 2 km sprint.

What makes this triathlon different from any other triathlon I’ve participated in, is that the swim is in a pool instead of open water. So instead of one mass start, the start was staggered, with a swimmer starting every 30 seconds in one of the six lanes. Before I started triathlon, I wasn’t a strong swimmer. I always forgot to kick my legs and never could get my breathing down. Since last August, I’ve been in the pool at least twice a week doing laps and it’s paid off! I was in the second wave of swimmers because my anticipated swim time for 100 meters was 1 minute 45 seconds. My actual swim was probably a little bit faster than that since I forgot that I needed to pace myself until the last 25 meters. I still need to work on sticking to my swim pace and getting my breathing right on race day.

Next we had a 500-meter run to the first transition. Looking back on this I feel kind of dumb, I took it way too easy and it’s because of the run in this transition that I didn’t place higher. A good lesson to learn, the clock doesn’t stop in the transition! Once I got to my bike things went quickly, bike shoes, helmet, sunglasses, race belt and I was off to the mount line. Once on my bike I took off, I got into a good rhythm right away and was able to keep my cadence up. I averaged, according to SportStats, around 32km/h for the bike portion of the race. I got to say, it’s a lot of fun to pass lots of people on the bike.

Zoom Photo took my pictures! – zoomphoto.ca

After the quick bike section it was into T2. This transition was much better. Racked my bike, helmet off, bike shoes off, running shoes on, quick mouthful of water and I was off on the 2km run section. The one thing that surprised me about this triathlon was that the run was almost all on the grass. I am not a big fan of running on the grass, especially when the first 1km is up hill but I was able to get into my rhythm easily. I would have liked to sprint a little harder at the end of the race but overall it was a good run and I hit my predicted run time.

In the end my effort was good enough for 5th overall and 2nd place in the men’s category, an awesome start to this season of triathlons. I won’t be doing anymore Try-A-Tri this season, I am hoping to do a few sprint races and then try my first Olympic distance race in early September. But I’ve got lots to keep me busy before then including the 5km race this coming weekend and the Rideau Lakes Tour June 9th and 10th. I want to give a big shout out to the event organizers who did an awesome job putting on a great event this weekend!

My next post will be about food … promise!

2 Responses to “Early Bird Triathlon…”

  1. returnofthejack May 22, 2012 at 9:40 pm #

    Way to go! The early bird was my first try-a-tri! Looking forward to hear about your sprint races!

    • stuie86 May 23, 2012 at 8:59 am #

      Thanks Jackie! First sprint will be at the end of June :D. Love Return of the Jack!

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