Monday, September 19, 2016

Life Time Tempe Triathlon

The run wasn't fun, but it was a good race.  Last year, I was worried about a foot injury and took it easy, but had been training pretty hard on swimming and cycling for IM FL.  This year, my feet were fine, but I hadn't been doing much training focused on this race.  How hard could it be?  It was just another Tempe tri around Town Lake.

Well, with the heat, it was pretty hard (probably 90 degrees by 10 am).  The non-wetsuit-legal swim was fine, but the start and first leg of the loop was more exciting than usual.  My start wave (men 50+) had a lot of swimmers, and the width of the course, a tight channel between the boat docks and the bridge arch, meant that swimmers were closer together while sighting into the rising sun -- so I was dodging and swimming around (and over) other swimmers for 500+ yards.  On the bike segment, my tri bike hadn't been reassembled precisely right, so I couldn't use the big ring at all (although most of the time in my age group, the big ring is only for show anyway).  Then on the run, it was a 2-loop course, so the second loop was hotter and harder, and required a lot of effort, until the very end.  I don't know if I've ever been more depleted at the end of an international tri; it felt much harder than usual.

My time was 3:05:43, which put me 4/11 in my division, 269/491 overall.  That's 12 minutes faster than last year, when I was 410/601 overall, but 3/5 in my division (this year, I picked up 2 minutes on the bike, 2 minutes in transitions, and 8 on the run).  Darn that (fellow TriScottsdale member) Billy Dean who decided to have his 60th birthday this year.

Photo credits: Pat Chang

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Canyon Lake Open Water Swim

4000 meter open water swim at Canyon Lake.  Beautiful day, and what was a pretty good swim for me (1:22:52 without a wetsuit) -- but which put me last among Masters men, 33/36 overall.  Those other people were fast.  Results here.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

NYC Triathlon 2016


I had a very nice day.  Luckily, the older guys got to start early, so I was finished before 9:30 am, when it was still only in the low 80’s.  I had a great swim (I was 157 out of 3377 in the swim—love that tide going out in the Hudson), and a pretty good (for me) run, but had bike mechanical issues and took a long time in each transition, so overall it was a good day, which could have been very good, but for the bike issues, and I finished at about the midpoint of my age group; when I did it 7 years ago, I was in the 33rd percentile.  It was the ultimate SGC triathlon: out front in the swim, then spend the rest of the day watching people pass me on the bike and run.  Full results here.  However, know that they cut the run course short, it was an 8K and not a 10K to get people out of the heat -- and around 10:30 or 11:00 am, well after I finished, they started sending runners up 72nd Street directly to the finish (1.5 miles) so they wouldn't be out in the heat.

I had a blast.  It’s a great party and they do a nice job running the event, but the logistics are amazingly difficult.  It’s the athletic version of the typical NYC story – “It’s impossible to live here/I couldn’t live anywhere else.”

The top right picture is from the finish line festival after the race.  I look a lot more dubious about the experience than I actually felt.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Bicycles and 60's Pop

Two of my things, together: The Zombies (the Zombies!) perform This Will Be Our Year at Mellow Johnny's Bike Shop in Austin, TX in 2013:

So the voices aren't what they used to be? So what.

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Tahoe Century 2016


The 2016 edition of America's Most Beautiful Bike Ride had wonderful weather (start at 50 degrees, finish at 75 degrees) and no flats or mechanicals.  98.8 miles on my Garmin, but Andy Gordon had 99.5 mi on Strava, so we'll go with that.  4,400 feet of climbing, 6:06 riding time, average speed 16.2 mi, finished by 1 pm which is my fastest ever.  And I felt it that night and all the next day.

Just a great day.  And it's much, much better to be riding with Andy than to be riding for Andy.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Tempe International Triathlon

I don't know how you celebrated your 61st birthday, but I did the Tempe International Triathlon, the international (and not sprint) distance, after flying home from New Jersey Saturday evening.  I was going to be very happy with anything under 3 hours, and did -- 2:52:16.  That pace might have been good enough to podium in some tris in my age group, but we had 7 men age 60-64 who did the race in 2:35 or less, and I've never been under 2:45 even in my younger days.  So I was 8/13 in my division, while 243/331 overall.  I was part of the TriScottsdale mob that took first place in the AZ Club Championships.  I also made a couple of mistakes (I had cleat covers on my bicycle shoes, so I wasted 1-2 minutes trying fruitlessly to clip in until I realized what was happening; lost my only water bottle at the beginning of the second loop of the bicycle course, so I was dehydrated for the start of the run; and cut my leg awkwardly dismounting my bicycle) but still managed to run the entire 10K (except for walking through water stops).  I'm told there will be pictures later, but they're not up yet.

A very nice day, even if it started at 3:30 am.  The best part?  At packet pickup, the volunteer who got me my number and swim cap asked if I was under or over 40.  When she learned it was my 61st birthday, she said I looked pretty good.  How can you not have a good day after that?