Riding for a Reason

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J-Hawk Early Bird Triathlon – April 26th, 2009

My friend Kristan and I signed up for the UW-Whitewater J-Hawk Early Bird Triathlon. It was a Sprint distance and the swimming portion was in a lap pool which made it very appealing for our first Triathlons. Both of our families were there to cheer us on.  Our swim was actually must faster than we ever achieved while training in the pool.  And despite the fact that it was a pretty miserable day, the weather held up for the biking and running portion of the race. My struggles with my good ol’ mountain bike made the run pretty painful given the fact that my calves were burnt out from my clipless pedals. But, I finished the race and decided if I’m going to keep doing these, I need a road bike.  Bib #103 Time: 2:03:00 Finished: 21/21 AG 25-29

Storm the Bastille – July 9th, 2009 (No official race results)

My cousin Jeff and I decided to run this race.  Neither of us had ever done it before, but we figured it would be a nice run.  It was pretty cool running through the streets of downtown Milwaukee.  I had been training for my triathlons, so I figured this would be a nice training piece.  Jeff hadn’t been training much so we decided we’d go at whatever pace he was comfortable with.  The kid didn’t stop!  A couple times we had to walk because I was out of breath.  Overall it was a lot of fun!  Unofficial Time: 33:00

Door County Triathlon – July 18th, 2009

I had heard a lot of good things about this Tri, so Katie’s family and I made a long weekend out of it and I competed.  The morning of the race was somewhat of a disaster with strong winds and rain.  The rain stopped by the start, but the winds kept up resulting in 3 to 6 foot waves in Green Bay.  They shortened the swim leg by 100 Meters. Yaaaayyy…  Other than feeling like I was swimming in a wave pool, the swim was ok.  I had a looooooonnnnnggg T1 transition, but other than that I was performing far better than I had at the J-Hawk.  My goals were to finish 15 minutes faster than the previous race and not finish last in my AG.  Bib #205 Time: 1:47:35 Finish: 32/34

Tri-ing for Children’s Triathlon – July 26th, 2009

This is the race that Cam, Steve and I set out to do on New Year’s Eve.  Adam, Jordan, and Jordan’s brother also decided to join in the fun.  We had a blast!  The organization of the event wasn’t very good, but the lake was nice and calm.  My asthma kicked in during the swim and it continued through the bike.  I still maintained a solid pace throughout, although the bike route was very hilly, bumpy, and I felt like I was always riding into the wind. Still managed to record another personal best and finish higher up in my AG.  Bib #677 Time: 1:35:25 Finish: 11/17

MS Best Dam Bike Ride – August 2nd, 2009 (No official race results)

Katie and I signed up for this about a month before the event.  Neither of us had ever ridden this far, but doing the one day option, we figured it wouldn’t be so bad.  It was amazing to see 1,500+ people on their bikes.  It was a long day with Katie and I finishing our 62.5 mile trip in 8 hours (including rest stops and lunch).  At the end of the day it was quite an achievement for both of us though.  Definitely a trip I will continue to participate in next year!

J-Hawk Latebird Triathlon – September 27, 2009

I started out strong on the swim.  I was feeling good and wasn’t getting very fatigued.  My first split clocked at 9:50, which is about on par from my previous three races.  Still I know if I focused more on training for swimming I could probably get another minute trimmed off of there.  However, I have bigger weaknesses to focus on. ;)  The T1 transition I still need to focus on.  I’ve cut down how much I need to do in that transition to trim some time, but I still have difficulty getting my barrings together after getting out of the water.  About 3:14 later I was on my bike and off on the route.

 Doing this route for the second time definitely was an advantage.  I knew what turns were coming next and what kind of terrain to expect.  Unfortunately, the winds are what got to me.  Starting out there were strong winds coming from the west.  Considering that most of the ride was heading north and south, that gave me no help and really just kind of pushed my bike all over the road for most of the ride.  I had about a mile of having the wind at my back, otherwise I was fighting the winds and riding in the drops most of the way.  I managed a respectable time of 46:23 on the bike with an average speed of 18.1mph.  My goal was to get at least 19mph, but on a day like this, that just wasn’t going to happen.  I had a great T2 time of 1:48, but I felt pretty gassed getting off of the bike.  I headed out to the cross-country trail for the 5k.

 It was nice to do this running route when it wasn’t drenched from the rain.  After getting a sip a water and walking for a few seconds to get my heart rate down, I was off.  I felt pretty good running.  Going through the nature preserve was pretty peaceful and helped me stay focused on the task at hand.  I didn’t really see anyone on the run, which made it difficult to try and pace myself, but for the first time, no one passed me during the race.  That was a first for me. :)  Granted there were only about 200 people total in the race, but hey, you have to have your achievements somewhere!  I finished the race strong and finished with a time of 1:35:27, about 13 seconds off my PR.  It wasn’t the time that I wanted to finish in, but given the more difficult bike and run courses, I will take that time into the off-season.  In all, I would say I had a successful season.  The first triathlon I did I finished in 2:03:38 and 5 months later I managed to trim more than 28 minutes off of that time.  Not too bad!

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