Monday, September 24, 2012

Bruuuuce! Oh, and a little race report, too

Let’s get to the most important business first.  On Friday, I managed to get two lower level tickets to the Bruce concert in Oakland in November.  I haven’t been to a Bruce show in at least five years (because I can’t stay up that late anymore!), but this one is on a Friday night so there was no way I wasn’t at least going to try to get tickets.  Lower level, left side of stage.  I’m excited!

And now for my first race report of this blog – the See Jane Run Duathlon on Saturday.  I laid out all of my gear on Friday night and got a good night’s sleep.  The alarm went off at 4:00 am, and once again the thoughts of “what am I doing?” entered my head.  But I paid for it, I trained for it, I’m doing it! 

I got there just after 6:00 am – or dark o’clock – and couldn’t even see where transition was.  My friends Meredith and Molly were there.  They were doing the triathlon.  In fact, Meredith was doing her first ever triathlon!  We managed to get a great spot in transition and got everything set up, made the required 14 trips to the bathroom, and then it was time to wait…and wait we did. 

I wasn't kidding - it really was dark out!
At 5 minutes before the first wave was set to go off, there was an announcement.  Apparently there was some road work along part of the bike route the night before, and the construction crew eliminated the entire bike lane.  So the race directors were trying to come up with an alternative.  And so we waited, and waited, and waited.  Finally they decided that the best and safest thing to do was to just eliminate that part of the course, shortening the bike portion of the race from 12 to 10 miles.  No big deal, but it was an hour and ten minute delay from the scheduled start time.  I have to admit, while standing around all that time I started to lose interest.  My legs were getting annoyed with standing, I was thirsty, and my breakfast was long gone by that point!

Molly showing off her giant tub of Aquaphor.  Prevents chafing!

Finally it came time to get this show on the road.  The duathlete wave was last, so I got to watch a number of the swim waves head out, including the wave that Meredith and Molly were in.  Then it was time to head to my start line.

There were a lot more duathletes than I expected, but I was happy to see that.  When you’re heading out in the last wave, it’s nice to have some company!  They counted down from 10, and off we went…straight uphill!  Um…I wasn’t quite ready for that, but I made it to the top where it leveled out.  One mile goes by pretty quickly, so before I knew it I was heading into transition. 

And uneventful transition – change my shoes, toss my visor, grab my bike helmet, and off I went.  And the bike start…also uphill.  But I knew this ahead of time so I was in a good gear and made it to the top where again it flattened out, then I took off.  Now on the flats, I was able to drink regularly and eat shot blocks every few minutes.  I probably ate more than I needed to, but since we had that hour delay I figured it was better to eat too much versus too little so I wouldn't bonk on the run.  I started passing people regularly and felt really good about my pace.  There was one steep hill towards the end, but it was short.  My biggest issue on this hill was getting past the people who either decided to walk it or were swerving trying to keep their bikes moving forward.  Just a few short minutes after this uphill, I was heading back downhill and into transition.  Bike over already?  I was a little disappointed – the bike portion is fun! 

T2 – rack the bike, take off the helmet, change shoes, grab my water bottle and GO!  At this point I was glad I had done the duathlon because I knew to expect the hill at the start of the run course.  I decided to walk up the hill to get my legs back under me after the bike, and I wasn’t alone in this strategy.  This run was really hard for me.  I expected it to be warm, but with the delayed start it was really HOT by this point of the day.  I did a lot of walking – more than I planned to or wanted to – but every time I started to run, my HR would shoot up and I had to slow down.  This was definitely not the run I wanted for this race, but I stayed positive and tried to enjoy myself.  And the miles actually flew by.  Before I knew it I was down the hill and heading across the grass to the finish.  Meredith and Molly were there to cheer me in, and that gave me a little boost.

Sprinting to the finish

Overall I had a great day.  I smashed the goal I had set for myself.  Even if the bike course hadn’t been shortened, I would have still beaten my goal time.  So it was a great day!

Run 1 - 11:42 (a fast pace for me)
T1 – 1:56
Bike – 36:36 (average 15 mph – fast for me!)
T2 – 1:15
Run2 – 44:35 (hot and slow!)

Total: 1:36:06

Even better, this location is the site of the first triathlon with an open water swim that I’m planning on for next year, so it was good to get a preview of the lake and the entire area.  The swim looks totally manageable, even now with my limited ability.

Next up…private swim lessons starting on Wednesday, and a couple of 5Ks to finish out the year.


  1. Great job!!! So good to race with you!

  2. Wow! This is a great blog. Sorry to hear you're a Golfer with a work problem... Oh well, eventually you'll kick the work habit and be able to be the golfer you were meant to be! --Eileen

  3. Great job! I can't wait to finish out the season with you and do some tri's' together next year also!