Mountain Man Triathlon

Last Sunday I did my third triathlon, the Mountain Man sprint triathlon at Lake Mary in Flagstaff, Arizona. My third triathlon and again I really hadn’t trained for it. I keep telling myself “I’ll train for the next one”, but I really haven’t quite followed through on that yet. I think I had ridden my bike about 6-7 times total so far this year and I had swam once since my last triathlon in October. I had at least run quite a bit though and have been doing around 10-15 miles per week (most weeks anyway) for the past several months. Fortunately for me this was a relatively flat course so it wasn’t too incredibly hard. I thought the swim was about to kill me but I managed to finish in 26:02 (750m swim).

So happy to get out of the water

So happy to get out of the water

After that I made my way into the transition area and onto my bike, my transition was 3:43 so not too horrible. Got on my bike (I had realized the night before that I had somehow lost my helmet after my last ride and had to borrow one) and I was ready to make up some time. I really hate swimming so I was happy to be on my bike even though I was still trying to recover from the swim. Biking felt good and I managed to stay at a steady pace. Since I take so long in the swim I was basically alone for most of my ride, but I finally started to pass a few people in the last couple of miles.IMG_1199 Finished the 20k ride in 44:40, traded my bike shoes for my Mizunos and started running. I was so tired that as soon as I started running I just wanted to stop but just kept telling myself to keep going. It made it easier once I started to catch up to and pass a few people. Especially when I passed someone in my age group (my goal was to not finish last in my age group). So I kept running and looking at my Garmin I was really surprised by my pace. I was running between a 9:30 and 10 minute mile pace the whole time. I know this is super slow for a lot of people, but for me this is not much slower than my normal 5k pace so I was pretty happy with how I was doing, especially because I felt like a was moving so much slower. I was doing well for the run and in about the last quarter mile I saw two more girls that were in my age group ahead of me. I had been slowly but steadily been catching up to them for a while but I wasn’t sure I would pass them before the finish. Now it’s not like I want to make other people feel bad, honestly I want them to do their best too, but I knew I could finish just a little higher in my group and I wanted to go for it.  I started to speed up just a little bit, I was feeling pretty rough at this point and I knew I was too far to be able to sprint the rest of the way so I just steadily upped my pace so that I could pass just two more girls before I finished. I made it past and I was psyched, especially because I knew I was almost done. I finished my 5k portion of the race in 30:13 (at least I think, my T2 and run time didn’t get posted right).

Almost done!

Almost done!

My total time for the triathlon was 1:47:17 and I was really happy with my time (my last sprint tri was 2:23, I had been about 1:30 faster on the swim but more than 30 minutes slower on the bike and 5 minutes slower on the run last time). This was a faster course beccause it was so flat but I still did much better, especially without much real training. I ended up 6/10 in my age group so I was happy with that. It was also really nice to have David here for my triathlon. He had come to Flagstaff for the weekend and was with me at the race. It was just nice and relaxing to have him with me before and after the race, much better than being on my own. Plus he took pictures which is much better for blogging. IMAG1971

Even though they’re tough and my motivation to train apparently isn’t always the best, I love doing triathlons and I hope to do many more. My goal is to do an Ironman someday and since Boulder is going to be hosting a full Ironman next year I might have my location picked out (probably not next year though). I’ll definitely try to keep fitting triathlons in when I can and maybe one of these days I’ll actually start to train seriously. Until then I just keep having fun and doing my bestIMAG1975

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Ride Flagstaff

About two weeks ago I went on my first bike ride here in Flagstaff. I live right off of Highway 180 and there are always people biking on it. The hard part is that 180 is super hilly. I went out South on 180 and immediately was going up hill. I made it like 2.5 miles before I had to stop because I was breathing so hard, I wasn’t quite used to the altitude yet. I took a short break though and kept going. After that I paced myself a little bit better and kept my gears nice and low for all the hills. I ended up going out just under 7 miles before turning around to head back. Riding back was much more fun because almost the whole ride back was down hill, so much better than going up. I want to try and ride this route a little bit more to work on my hill climbing. I also want to start working on riding up Snowbowl road. It’s a couple thousand feet up over a few miles (2,000ft and 5 miles from what I looked up) and I’d like to at least try it and work my way up as much as possible.

I also rode my bike downtown which was super nice. It was about a 3 mile ride with just a bit of uphill. Parking is a little crazy downtown so being able to ride was much nicer.IMAG1881

Yesterday I did a nice long ride on Lake Mary Road. This is where my triathlon will be next week. Since the race is in a week and I had only ridden my bike twice since I’ve been here I really needed to get out and ride. I went in the middle of the afternoon but it was a pretty nice day, right around 80 degrees and a little cloudy. It was weird when I was riding because there was a breeze that was part really warm air and part cold air, it was strange but the cold air felt great. I started out near the day use area and headed North for about 5 miles before turning around. It was a little hilly again but nothing too bad. Then I went back past where I started and kept going South (this is more where the race will go). It was a little more climbing going this way but I was still feeling alright and keeping a pretty good pace. Unfortuneately right now that part of the road isn’t completely paved and is just chip sealed so it’s a lot more rough. I went 5 miles out this way also and right when I was finishing that 5 miles I hit a super strong headwind that almost had me stopped even though I was on a slight downhill. Then when I turned around I still mananged to have a head wind, how does that even happen?! My last few miles back my legs still felt about the same (I think I pulled one of my adductors rock climbing the other day, my legs/hips were way tight) and I was breathing okay but I had just started to wear out. I made it back just fine though and had done about 21 miles in a little under 90 minutes. I was really happy with it for only my third ride in the past month.IMAG1947 Afterwards I begrudgingly got in the lake to do a little bit of swimming. Not nearly as enjoyable as my ride but the cold water felt great and it washed off the sweat that had been pouring off of me during my ride. I wish I had been doing better on my training for this triathlon but I think I’ll be able to finish just fine. I always get more motivated after every race so I’m looking forward to it.

You'd think I would be smart enough to put on sunscreen...Nice racerback burn

You’d think I would be smart enough to put on sunscreen…Nice racerback burn