St. Anthony’s, Here We Come

Posted by on April 21, 2009 in Training

It’s five days away, but I’m bubbling with excitement.  I’ve never done an April triathlon before and while it makes sense given frigid water temps in the northeast this time of year, this sport breeds such significant interest nationally and internationally that it was only a matter of time before I did an early Spring race.

People have been asking me if I’m ready and my answer is a yes, but not an emphatic one.  Frankly, I’m concerned about a few things that are not yet race-tested.  Specifically, the worst part of my 2008 season was the beginning of the run leg right after hard bike efforts.  I remember in the Philly Triathlon that I ran the first three miles at a near 9:00 pace but the final three at 7:30 or better and with the last mile being my fastest.  That’s really the ideal, that the last mile is indeed the fastest one, but I vowed to work on getting those first few mile splits faster.

I’ve not spent time at the track nor done intervals nor worked on lower body weight training, etc., but my run splits have been very strong this training season.  I’ve only done two short bricks, but in both cases, I averaged ridiculously fast run splits.  If nothing else, it’s made me feel very confident and strong going into this next event.  It’s this aspect that breeds the bubbling kind of excitement!

I know that I still have a lot of work to do on the bike and that my swim likely won’t get a ton better, but the bike course this weekend is said to be super flat and super fast.  I was offered a friend’s rear disc wheel for the event and another friend strongly recommended that I accept the offer, but I’m on the fence about it.  Nonetheless, I know that I can put in a good effort for 65-70 minutes and dial into the right gear choices.  That part of training has been great.   In a way, I wish that there were some climbs, even some steep ones, because my climbing skills have been steadily improving.  It’s evident from my own perception, but somewhat confirmed from an experience this past weekend.

I was with a bunch of friends including my friend Jon, a multiple-times Ironman, as we returned from Piermont, NY to NJ.  There are a few climbs in between and while I wasn’t trying to destroy anyone’s legs or put in a Superman effort, he told me afterwards that I had “crushed” those climbs.  From an ego perspective, that felt good to hear but of tremendous greater importance was that I felt good about those efforts.  Jon put the hurt on me later in the ride and though I was able to stay with him, it took a lot out of me and that’s the obvious indicator that I still have a lot of work to do this season.  Ultimately, my goal is to “crush” every climb but to do so even harder, and have very quick recoveries in light of the “A” race, the NYC Triathlon on July 26th which features a few long-ish climbs.

With tired legs, I had a very difficult time running in the Run-As-One 4-miler in Central Park Sunday morning.  I had it in my mind to run it in 29 minutes (a 7:15 pace) but my pace wound up being 7:28.  I am disappointed that a) it took so long for me to navigate through the crowds in the beginning, b) my legs hadn’t rebounded enough from the previous day, and c) I missed my goal… but the good news is that 7:28 pace would be fantastic in an Olympic distance triathlon.  My legs would have allowed for another 2 miles at the pace (maybe), so I am encouraged once again.

The water temp in St. Petersburg is said to be in the mid 70s, so who knows how well the swim will go.  I spent a few extra minutes in the shower this morning doing the math with respect to my timeline in the race, and it fits right into my goal of 2:30 or better.  It’s somewhat hard to figure out a goal time when you’ve never seen the course and have no idea what to expect, so for now, it’s just a number without tremendous significance.

The best part about the race is that Fernando and I are going together.  For me, it’ll be great to spend time with one my closest friends in the world especially on Sunday after the race.  Rumor has it that they roll up a beer truck to the finish area.  Lucky for me, I have this Road-ID tag with my name and emergency numbers on it in case/when I drink too much that afternoon!

Write a Comment on St. Anthony’s, Here We Come


Follow comments by subscribing to the St. Anthony’s, Here We Come Comments RSS feed.


Read more posts by