Monday, June 19, 2017

Bridge to Pier Tri - 3 Little Pigs Tri 2017

We made a week-before decision to head down to Oak Island for the Bridge to Pier Triathlon on June 10. This my longest triathlon for 2017.  600m swim - 16 mile bike - 3.8mile run. We'd never been to Oak Island before, just down south from Wilmington, and I liked the idea of getting in a beach triathlon. The Goddess Bri and I used to do many beach sprint triathlons in Florida and swimming through some surf is always a fun way to start.

Anyway, we spent the night in downtown Wilmington in a cute condo a former athlete has on VRBO. Excellent location, we walked to dinner and then did some exploring. Caught a ride with a bike trolley thing, Junior definitely got a kick out of that.

Boat-restaurant-place on the Cape Fear

A new brewpub in downtown

Up and at em the next morning and got there with a few minutes to spare. I didn't spare enough time to warm up on the swim, so did a bunch of arm swings and splashed around a puddle to get ready.

literally: splashing in a puddle

Off we go!  I had a good swim and took the lead about midway.  Caught a wave on the way in, always fun.

Me like ocean swims

Held the bike lead until around mile 14, then trailed the leader back to the finish. I have the gas to go hard for 6-8 miles these days, but then really need to back off the effort if I want to risk mitigate totally blowing on the run.

 Coming into T2



The run went well but was warm/hot and fairly humid. We ran down a beach road, out to the Oak Island pier, past a few early morning fishermen, and back. I held it together with around 7 minute miles and finished second overall.

It is a great place to have a triathlon. Unfortunately this was also the last year as the race just doesn't get the sort of turnout that the race organizers need to make it feasible.

We went on to have a nice morning hanging around the beach.

I'd like to rant about supporting your local events a bit.  Mega-corporate race organizers don't care about the local racing community, whatseoever. They just want you to eat the marketing and throw down your dollars. They will push into new markets, then pull out the moment an existing race doesn't meet their ROI or IRR metrics. Read this, or this, or this, or this, for example.  If you're a triathlete, you should make a point of doing at least a handful of your local events.  Don't just do 70.3 this and Ironman that. If you ignore your local races, they will eventually be forced to go away. What will you do when you grow tired of the megacorp race showmanship?  Rant over.

A week later, Bri and I would both race in the 3 Little Pigs triathlon. I think it was my fifth run at the event. It is nearby, puts on a good post-race fiesta, and has cool awards.

Bri went on to win the overall event with a dominating performance. I also did pretty well, biking at a higher effort than the previous week, but ran a little slower. I felt tired coming off the bike and the high humidity made it difficult to breathe.  It's funny to say but a sprint triathlon bike is tough, especially if you're not riding a whole bunch. Last year I could ride 50-70 miles the day before and feel fine.  This year, taking it easier, is a different story.  But cruising through this season will allow me to get angry and train like a monster again in 2018. :)

Anyway I held onto roughly 7 minute mile pace again and finished in 11th overall, 1st in my AG.

I would tell you I was 12 seconds ahead of Bri, but that would be petty.

Here are screenshots of my three recent triathlon bike leg power files. I start out on the hard side, then reality creeps in and slow down since I don't want to die. You might notice the VI (variability index) on all these is 1.02-1.03, meaning I attempt to ride at an even power output. This is a helpful skill for long distance racing. Theoretically.

Beaverdam May 13: NP 247

Bridge to June 10: NP 237

3 Pigs June 17: NP 252

My FTP last season got up to 270-275, but this year it's about 250.  So 3 Pigs was on the harder side of effort. My equipment is good but not the best, so speed is relative to aerodynamics and weight.  I could be faster if I was in a more aero position, carried less 'adipose tissue,' or had integrated brake pads. Bah humbug.

We also have been having some fun in regular life as well, as you might imagine.

 Father's day jello feeding at SFF Cary!

 Bike splashing

 Ice cream crushing

 Father's day lake time

Me and El Chico

I am typed out. Next up is Boone summer camp, this week! Followed by beach week in Avon by the Sea, NJ! Holla!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Aw, shucks.

So I missed another few weeks of blogging. What can you do?

A lot has happened since April 12, my last post.  I'd tell you in detail, but that would take a long time and require me to make much typing on the keyboard. Let's bullet point everything instead.

  • We held two open water swim clinics.
  • I skipped White Lake Sprint due to being a wuss about weather
  • We went to three different Durham Bulls games
  • Junior Awesome ran in a bunch of kids races
  • Junior Awesome did his first round of T Ball
  • We had our 13 year anniversary and Bri had a birthday
  • We held the Jordan Lake Open Water Challenge on a beautiful morning!
  • I took second in the Beaverdam sprint triathlon wearing our new OSB kits
  • Bri took second AG and 7th OA at the 70.3 Chattanooga and we had a nice vacation (zoo, museum, fishing, swimming).
  • We had a Memorial Day weekend cookout at OSB HQ

Now, here are some pictures of some of the above, more or less in order.



Next up is the Oak Island sprint triathlon on June 10. We just worked out the logistics.  After that it is 3 Little Pigs on the 17th.

I will also be swimming in the Swim Across America charity swim in Cary NC on June 11.

Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Half-marathon race report: Not So Normal Run, Carrboro 2017

After scrapping the WB half marathon for family reasons, I discovered there was a convenient half-marathon in town the following weekend.  This one's called the Not So Normal Run in Carrboro. Carrboro is a hippish little town just west of Chapel Hill. Lots of fun things to do.

I didn't rest up and stayed up too late the night before. I had psyched myself up for a flat half marathon at the beach, not a rolling type course, and my chi and chakras had sort of gone floopy and floppy with the preceding travel and a busy week in general.

But, like the super duper trooper I am, I decided that if and when I awoke, I would put on my happy face and DO WORK. If I felt good. And had enough coffee. And something to eat.

I arrived early.  Almost too early! I had enough time to run to the site, get my stuff, run back to the car, drive the car closer, and drink more coffee on the drive.

Here is a file recording part of the warmup and the drive to the new parking space. It's exciting!

The weather was perfect. Perfect I say! 40 degrees and not moist. Dry, is a word. Yes. It was a cool, dry morning. Perfect!

I lined up. There were around 400 people total between the 4 different races. I was in the second line of runners. Not the very front. Perfect!

Once we started, I discovered that my watch was in bike mode. Since it told me I was riding nine miles an hour and my power was zero. Damn. How will I run without a watch to bleep and blurp at me. This is unacceptable!

As I attempted to change the settings on the watch without slowing down and without my reading glasses, a local racing buddy pulled up next to me. Joy! I asked what pace he intended to run. "Around 1:30," he said. Perfect! I shall latch onto him if possible.

I fixed the watch. My legs felt good. Kit and I chatted throughout the run and kept a very consistent pace. It wound up being a good day and we finished just under 1:32. I am pretty sure he could have gone faster but his wife just had a new baby and he was new-daddy tired.

The course wasn't flat but it wasn't terribly hilly either. I was pleased to have a good run and look forward to attempting another shot at breaking 1:30 in the fall at some local race or another.

I didn't take any other pictures, except with my mind, which is like a Polaroid. Shake it around and something might turn up.

Bird up!