I raced my last triathlon as a 36 year old this past Sunday out in Carrollton, Ga. It was a low-key event, not even USAT sanctioned, that had somewhere around 250 participants. I’m sometimes weary of non-sanctioned events, but this one turned out to be a lot of fun. It was an interesting contrast to some of the higher profile races I have run. The day started out extremely eventful with my Xterra’s battery dying. I had to procure a car from a friend in order to get out to the race. This stress was quickly relieved once I had my bike racked and headphones on.
Swim 1/4 Mile
My swim was pretty good, turning in an 8:25 time. The start wave I was in was extremely crowded and it reminded me of the Ironman start where it’s like you are in a washing machine. Sighting on the course was easy and before I knew it I was done. 8 minutes go by pretty fast.
Bike 12 Miles (Map Below)
The bike course was rolling, with the first half containing a number of short inclines. I was able to stay aero most of the time and turned in a 36:06 split. I had slightly higher expectations when I hit mile 7 on what I think was Hwy 61 – immediately upon turning I was hit with a strong headwind that stayed in my face the next 4.5 miles. My wattage was steady as was my form, so I’m really happy with my performance on this leg despite the wind.
Run 3.4 Miles (Map Below)
The run started fairly innocuously with a gentle negative grade. Unfortunately, what goes down must come up, and a series of inclines began around mile 1. I was pretty steady just under a 9 minute pace the whole way, with only 1 walking incident at the water stop. The finish was uphill and I was challenged at the end by some guy who decided to sprint by me about 1/10 of a mile from the line. I accelerated a bit too soon, allowing him to respond and barely beat me to the line. Oh well – I’m not a sprinter. My run split was 30:04. Below is a picture of me at the line – you can tell I was after this guy since both of my feet are off the ground.
Overall time was 1 hour 19 minutes. T1 was probably 3:30 including the run up to transition. I can’t imagine T2 being over a minute. I met or beat all of my objectives. Next up – tri bike shopping. I have narrowed it down to 2, so it’s just a matter of taking them both for a ride for the final decision. The funds have been set aside and my personal goals have been met. Time to “put the bow” on it and bring it home!
Update: Here are the course maps for the bike and run course.