Happy tri-versary to me! Top Gun Sprint Triathlon is always my anniversary into the madcap world of triathlon. This is my fifth year competing and this race holds a special place in my heart. Every year I love racing at Ft. De Soto and seeing so many friends. I also love adding my times to my Top Gun annual race spreadsheet. Nerd alert!
Going into Saturday’s race I really wanted to PR and run low to sub eight minute miles. I also wanted a faster bike split because in my brain I thought since I’ve been cycling so much it would be faster for sure, right? Eh…..
|Pre race with the S.O. and some pink cap buddies.|
Upon arriving at the race I had a couple of thoughts on my mind about the swim. First off, my wave of pink capped women was ages 20-39. Holy moly, that’s a lot of ladies starting a swim together – for only 440 yards. Second, transition had been moved farther away due to the construction of the parking lot it was normally held in. It was going to be a long run to T1.
I lined up in the front and figured if any faster ladies were behind me, they’d just have to swim over me cause there was no way I was getting caught in the back this year.
As the horn sounded, we took off en masse and it was a cluster. There were arms, legs, feet, and bodies everywhere. It was the most chaotic swim start I’ve ever had to deal with. I usually tell people that the swim isn’t as bad as they make it out to be. Well, this one was. I fought to find clean water and I don’t think I hit any until I was half way into the swim. As soon as I got some breathing room, I saw gold caps from the wave in front of us. I had to weave around them and one gentleman in particular was breast stroking and I got his toenail right to my face. Ew. That’s a first. Fortunately, there wasn’t a scrape or anything, it just made me laugh.
I didn’t PR the swim, but it was a solid effort and I’m happy with where I got out of the water amongst my age group. Top ten is pretty standard for me at this point.
Swim Time: 8:39 (7/53)
As I mentioned earlier, the run to our bikes was longer than previous years so I really tried to hustle. I PR’d this somehow over last year so I assume that means I only made mini-sandwiches. Yay!
T1 Time: 3:47
I was pumping hard when I first got going on the bike and I think we had a tailwind heading toward the turn around. This bike course is roughly 9.6 miles, even though they say it’s a “ten mile” bike ride. It’s a long, flat out and back with a large U-turn.
My legs were burning the entire ride. I tried to keep it above 19 and felt that I should be going faster but my legs were not having it. Not one tiny bit. I am going to assume that since I’ve been riding long and slower I just wasn’t warmed up. Who knows really. I passed a lot of people but got passed by at least three women in my age group. I was only 37 seconds slower than my time last year so that’s not too bad.
|Coming into T2.|
Bike Time: 28:38 (17/53)
9.6 miles at 20.1 MPH
I’m really happy with this time. I used my running shoes with regular laces versus the fast laces but otherwise I think I did good (for me) hustling out of T2.
T2 Time: 1:36
For some reason I had big plans for this run. I really wanted to PR this course and run sub 8’s or close to. Unfortunately, the course was long so while it was a pace PR it wasn’t a course PR. I had messed up my Garmin so I had to re-set it as I ran along out of transition. I started really feeling the warmth of the day around the second mile. Fortunately, it was overcast so that helped a ton! I was hoping I could catch some more women from my age group on the run, but man these ladies are fast! I only passed one woman from my age group and that was around mile two.
As I was running toward the finish, I heard people cheering for a friend named Jessica in my age group who was behind me. I sprinted that final stretch because I had no clue how close she was behind me. This woman is so fast, I was being cautious by killing myself. Haha. (She beat my run time by three minutes!) It was a good reminder to me that I need to kick it in at the end regardless, cause man she was close!
Run Time: 26:19 (12/53)
3.26 miles at 8:04 per mile
Overall Time: 1:08:56
11/53 in Age Group
|First tri for Cheryl! So proud of her!|
|Me & Keara, speedy girl got 7th in our AG!|
Overall Thoughts and spreadsheet!
I have mixed feelings about Saturday. On the one hand, I’m happy I raced almost identically to last year with a run PR. On the other hand, I sorta feel like I should have been faster and really wanted to go top ten. On the third hand (uh, what?), I know that I’m tired from all of the extra training I’ve been doing and this more than likely played a part in my results. I did have a fantastic time post race with all my friends and I will be back next year for that top ten spot! I’m coming for it Top Gun!
|I should make 1:08 my lucky number.|
Thanks for reading! Hope you all hade great weekends!