Sept. 11, 2011–
Looking back, when I was younger, I could have envisioned myself doing an olympic triathlon someday. However, I never thought I would be doing my first on the tenth anniversary of one of the most deadly attacks of terrorism in history. I was sitting in Biology class in 8th grade ten years ago on this day. Today, ten years later, I ran my first olympic distance tri.
Set in Sag Harbor, NY, the Mighty Hamptons Olympic Distance tri celebrated it’s 30th annual race this morning. The .9 mile swim took place in Noyack Bay, the 24 mile bike leg and the 10k run were nice routes through Sag Harbor.
The last two weeks my level of nervousness had increased exponentially. Between hurricane Irene and the last week pounding Long Island with rain, I hadn’t been able to get out to do much of any training. I attempted two long brick sessions before the hurricane but flatted out about half way into my bike both times. I took that as a potential sign of bad things to come.
Before the race I did set some time goals for myself. During my training, I had been able to do the swim distance in just around 30 minutes, the bike distance in and hour and a half to an hour and forty minutes, and the run in just over an hour. So I had said I would have been happy with a finish faster than three and a half hours, but ideally I wanted to be closer to that three hour mark.
Swim – .9 Mile
The swim was a water start. We swam about a half mile down parallel to the beach, turned around and swam the same distance back. The waves weren’t too big, but toward the end of the swim, the water began to get more and more crowded, and then the elbows really started flying. I am pretty sure at one point I caught someone in the face with an elbow, but these are the risks triathletes take entering these races. I know at several times I was hit or kicked, so I guess in the end it all evened out. In the end, got out of the water feeling strong, and headed to transition to get onto the bike.
Swim Time: 30:31 1:51/100 yds
T1 time: 2:59
Bike – 23.8 Miles
This bike course was great! It was very scenic, and had, in my opinion, a perfect balance of up and down hills. I felt really strong on the bike (it could have been from my almost two full weeks of rest before the race) but I definitely felt like i was really moving. Unlike trirock, this course was so well marked. On the streets, there were orange arrows in every intersection we crossed to direct us as well as white signs and police/volunteers at all of the turns to direct us where to go. One other thing I really liked were the signs which read “slow, turn in 25 yards”. It made me feel as though I had ridden this course several times before. I never was worried of being lost or not knowing which way to turn. Overall, a great bike leg, with an average speed about 2 mph faster than I had been maintaining in my training.
Bike Time: 1:19:38 18 mph
T2 Time: 1:33
Run – 10k
The run has always been the weakest aspect of my tri game. I will compliment myself, and say that I have gotten much stronger running, and can now run several miles without stopping, I just am not very fast. I am moving in the right direction thought, so as far as I am concerned it is a work in progress. This run course was a very nice, relatively flat course which wound through a small residential area. Many people came out of their houses to cheer on the runners as they went by, which I thought was really cool. While I was running these were some of the thoughts that were running through my mind…
“Okay, this is just two 5ks”
“Two miles down, just have to do what I already did two more times”
“Halfway there, just keep going”
“2 miles left”
“1 mile left, time to turn it on”
“I can see the finish line”
Run Time: 1:09:27 11:12/mile
Overall Time: 3:04:05
I had my personal photographer with me (AKA my girlfriend Amy) and when she did manage to get some good pictures of me when she wasn’t taking pictures of dogs. Here are some of the good ones…
Not sure whose dog this is, or why I needed fifty pictures of it, but yes it is cute!
Exiting the water after the swim…I am in the blue cap
T1…both transition shots she got looked the same, so decided to just put one up. I am in tie foreground
Post race…really lovin my new Oakey Fast Jackets!
Best part of racing for me…T-Shirts and medals
(Really pumped to have a long sleeve shirt for the upcoming cold)
A few closing thoughts and remarks……
I am not sure if it is written anywhere else in the blog, but I am an aspiring math teacher…have all the certifications and degrees…just waiting for a job opening. But, as a math person, I could not be more excited about my finishing time. 3,4,5 is one of the special right triangles, and my time of 3:04:05 was perfect to me! I am happy with my time, but there is definitely work to be done. I think in the winter months, I will certainly be focusing a lot on my run.