Sunday, April 19, 2015

A racy weekend

I have been just a little active lately. Once I was fully recovered from my hike into the Grand Canyon, it was time to get a little more activity.

I have the great fortune to be part of a really fun triathlon training group, Team Endurance Fusion.  On Friday we had a Spaceballs Prediction 5K (a few of our team members registered for a virtual 5K and got cool medals, but I just ran). I wasn't sure whether to predict 34:00 or 35:00, so I split the difference and said 34:30. I ran most of the race with a team member who had predicted 33:00, and surprised myself by finishing in just over 33:00.

I wore my Enell gear for this race and even had a chance to evangelize a bit with a team member who didn't like her current sports bra. We had a fun party afterward with lots of healthy food and a dunk tank. It was too cold for me to dunk but I happily tried (and missed all my throws) to dunk another team member.

The problem with race photos is you see the problems with your form. Look at that arm!
The party was to celebrate the opening of multisport season in Toledo, which kicked off with the Dooby Du today. This event is more than a double duathlon and goes Run-Bike-Run-Bike-Run. I wasn't going to do the race, because of the heavy emphasis on running, but I let myself get peer-pressured into it. It's a small race and attracts mostly serious multisport athletes. I was seriously worried about finishing last.

The start of the race. I am hidden behind the woman in gray.
I had never done or even considered doing the race before, and had no idea what to predict for a time. I decided my goals for the race were, in order of importance:
  1. To finish
  2. Not to puke
  3. Not to finish last
Another run-form nightmare. I need to be more upright.

I found the runs very challenging. They were only 2 miles each, but they felt long to me. I think I might have been a little sore from Friday's race, but I also was alone for most of the course because almost everyone was faster than me. I would always start to wonder if I had gone the wrong way. 

The biking was better, since I am so much stronger on the bike, but there were 30 mph wind gusts and there were times when I was going into the wind and really struggling.  I did manage to catch a couple of people on the bike and close the gap that had opened up during the run a bit. The first bike loop was pretty cold, but the second one was warmer. Even though the bike loops were only 6.3 miles, they felt long because of that wind.

I got lapped by the first-place man when I was finishing my second run loop. The biggest thing I had to fight was the mental challenge of feeling so far behind everyone else. It helped to know I had other team members there. There were three or four people behind me, and one was close enough to make me worry that she would pass me if I let up too much. I walked a few times because one of my feet hurt but I didn't let myself walk for very long, just a few steps. 

I wouldn't say I look happy in this finish photo, but I was relieved.
I didn't have a spectacular time -- I took longer than the two hours I threw out as a rough goal, finishing in 2:13:15. My transitions were horrible. My splits, for the geeky:

Leg Activity Distance Time Pace
1 Run 2 24:06 12:03 per mile
trans 01:45
2 Bike 6.5 23:41 16.47 mph
trans 02:27
3 Run 2 25:46 12:53 per mile
trans 01:54
4 Bike 6.5 24:26 15.96 mph
trans 02:15
5 Run 2 26:55 13:28 per mile
TOTAL 2:13:15

I did, however, manage to score second place in the 45-49 women's age group, since there were only two of us (I'm 44 but I have a birthday in December, and in triathlon, you race as the age you will be on December 31).

I was so far behind the other finishers that they hadn't printed my results before handing out awards, so I had to ask for my medal. The race organizers were really nice about it. This was a tough race for me, so I think I earned it! Our team had one third-place finisher and four second-place finishers, so I think we are going to have a great season.

Will I do this race again? Maybe, especially if I can improve that pesky running form.


  1. Good on you, Jen! That sounded bloody tough, definitely earned that medal!

    On a shallow note love the purple Enell top, suits you Ms Ambassador! :)

    1. It is very flattering compared to my other fitness gear. The hardest thing about the race was not quitting because I knew I was slow -- I was fourth from last, and that was doing a number on my head.


"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07