Sunday 29 August 2010

Little Woody 2010

I completed my first middle distance tri yesterday.

The swim venue got changed at the last minute due to blue/green algae in the original lake. I think this ended up for the better as it was now in a diving quarry with crystal clear water.

I started off really well. Had a really good swim - 28.30 (possibly slightly short)! Long, long run up a big hill to T1. Off on the bike and feeling really good. Minor incident with my chain coming off before the long 2 mile drag up hill but easily sorted! Went past lots of people on the hills and by the time I had done the 12 miles which took us to where T2 was situated and the start of the big lap I was apparently in 1st! I was having such a good ride and feeling really good but in hindsight I had definitely overcooked it!

My HR was higher than the zone I planned to keep it in but because I was feeling good I ignored this. So first lesson learned - even when feeling good keep to the plan!

Next lesson to be learned was how to eat on the bike. I found it so hard to eat anything. I had pieces of fruit bread, cereal bars and raisins to eat but really couldn't get them down. All I managed for the whole very hilly 98k was 1 tiny piece of fruit bread, a few raisins and 3 gels. So with about 40k to go I started to go through a bad patch. This was quite worrying as I still had the 2 hills in English Bickner about 9k from the end to contend with yet.

It was during my bad patch that I dropped into 2nd place. I persevered and somehow got to the end of the bike.

When I got to T2 I saw Dan who was very encouraging and said I was now 10 mins behind 1st place and just to keep the run steady.

This time I did stick to my HR zone and after about 5 mins I got into my running. I saw Dan again around 6k and he said I was now 7 mins behind and if I kept this pace I would get her. I just kept it steady and didn't let myself get carried away. I then saw Dan again at the halfway point and I was now 5.15 behind. The only problem was there was a girl not far behind tracking me and most likely biding her time!

Next time check and the gap was down to 2.45 with about 6.5k to go, then down to 1.45 with about 3.5k go go. It was just after this point that my body had enough! My hips got tight and my legs started to go. Around 3k to go the girl behind caught me and I was so frustrated as there was nothing I could do. I was light headed and wobbly! I've never felt so bad. I was really starting to wonder if I would make it to the finish line. I just had to break the rest of the run down into small chunks. When I saw the road I knew I probably had less than 1k to go and I just kept thinking when I get to the finish line then I can collapse - just keep going. The main thing that kept me going was that if I stopped and walked I might lose my 3rd spot as I really had no idea where 4th place was!

I somehow made it to the finish line in 3rd and was only 40s behind 2nd. Then I did collapse!!

Really pleased with my result but several lessons learned! I really was frustrated at how close I came to winning - if only I hadn't started off like an idiot on the bike, if only I had got my nutrition right, if only....... We can all say if only when we don't win though!!

A really friendly, well organised event. I will definitely consider this one again in the future.