Been super busy... so I've no time for blogging (or anything else for that matter)... but without further ado... here is my race report for The Half Full Tri in Ellicot City Maryland on Oct 3rd!
Though a local race... this was an early start to my day... 4 am wake up call! Looked at the weatherbug on my computer and saw 42 degrees outside... brrrrrr! Put the Negative Split tri tank and tri short on... and over that a pair of lounge pants and my blue Ironman jacket... it was gonna be a cold one! At 4:45 I headed out the door and headed up for the short drive to Ellicot City! Once there I parked... grabbed the gear (the bike was racked the day before). After dropping my stuff off at my bike... I got body marked (a very chilly experience having to strip down to just the tri gear)... to then head back to my bike and get my gear together. I talked to several girls at my rack... all my age! As time rolled by I started to get my stuff finished up... grabbed my wetsuit... and headed down to swim start.
Swim .9 Miles
The start was a time trial start... but by age group waves... start ever 5 seconds apart two at a time. Lucky me... there were an uneven amount of gals in my age group so I got to go by myself. As my feet hit the water... I realized just how cold 68 degree water felt... at that point my feet froze. Once I got fully in the water... the water felt chilly but my body warmed up to it pretty quickly. About 200 meters into the swim this gal who had passed me kicked my face right in the goggles... ouch. I had to stop to readjust them... good thing they were underneath my cap... and got on with my swim. The swim was a weird swim in general... buoys every 400 meters or so and in the middle of the lake... since you swam on both sides of them. With not so many people in the water there wasn't too much traffic and I came out with a good swim time... well under 29 minutes... if only I knew what was coming next...
Bike 56 Miles
I wanted to seriously cry my way out of this part of the race becuase I had seen the course before... but I couldn't do that! The first part was really enjoyable with some good little rollers. Though my right bike shoe strap decided to not cooperate with me I still had a decent first part. I can't remember what mile exactly... but it started to get tough. The hills got tough... steep... short... and very hard. This was where I wanted to cry. It wasn't just one bad hill... it was that every hill was bad for the next 20 some odd miles until the turnaround traffic circle. I creeped my way up every hill the first time through... and cried my way up the hills the second time through. This course was definitely my worst enemy. I was relieved to hear "last big hill" from a volunteer! What can I say... if you love hard... short... and steep hills... this course is for you!
Run 13.1 Miles
I loved this part of the race. Going out of transition was all downhill to the path around Centennial Lake. The part around the lake was hard... lots of steep and short uphill like the bike... but not nearly as bad. I had no idea what my pace really was... since my Garmin had broke a week before the race... but seriously I didn't care... because I felt real good. At the point where we got off the trail and went on local and countryish roads... I met a girl who was from Philly who came down to do the race. We talked for the next hour or so... about everything tris... goals... races... everything. I had never talked like this during a race so it was a change of pace for once. This fun ended when she told me she was walking up a hill... but said for me to continue... so I continued... running. The second loop was almost the same course but just a tad different... still I enjoyed the climbs and descends.
Overall... with a mid season Ironman DNF... I couldn't have done a better distance to end the season... even if I never do this actual race again! What will the 2011 tri season bring... hopefully awesomeness and a podium placing!