Thursday, June 7, 2012

Race far: Duathlon and 50 mile cycle

I have previously posted that I have been following a training plan for triathlon season made up of two different formats, one from triplyo (minus their plyo workouts that are for sale) and from Running Mag UK. I started following them just after the More Half.  At that point I had about 9 weeks until my first race and it is completely freaking me out that I am down to only a few weeks left and already into June!  When I realized I was on page two of both workouts I had to take a step back. 

I already did my first race so the jitters should be gone, but I usually end up jittery at every race.  The first race was the Ten Penny Ale Shamrock Duathlon and 5k in Glastonbury, CT run by the Hartford Marathon Foundation.  HMF runs great events so I was eager to sign up.  My friend Jen, who ran the More Half with me, also signed up.

I had gone up to CT on Friday since Billy was away traveling for work.  I was able to walk with my dad in support of NAMI (national association for mentally ill) on May 19th at their walk in Hartford in the morning then shoot down to Glastonbury for to scope out the race bike ride route.  Always a great and recommended idea.

Packet pick up didn't start til 3 so I was outta luck there.  Jen and I had planned to go up when she got to CT but unfortunately she hit a ton of traffic and was delayed, but that gave me time to say farewell to my parents who were hitting the road to my cousin's graduation and say hi to my friend Amanda who popped by with her lil cutie baby for a visit.

Jen and I left the house at the crack of dawn at 5:15 a.m. to head to be first in line for packet pick up at 6 a.m. we were near the first one's there and it was actually great because we had our choice of space for our bikes, which were right next to each other.  The race started at 7:30 and was a 5k, 16.1 mile bike and 5k.

We also had plenty of time to stretch and get ready and evidently it worked because I ran my fastest 5K in the opening run.  I tried to keep up with Jen but lost her quickly but evidently trying to see her from far away worked as I ran a 10 minute mile for the first 5k.  The bike was hilly but doable and my hill practice with Billy definitely paid off.  The last 5k I was very worried since it seemed everyone was done and I felt awful, but I found a friend running along at my pace and worked to keep up with her and was only 4 minutes behind my previous run in total. 

I was incredibly pleased with my results.  However as approach race #2 - the Women's Mini 10k nerves are creeping up.  My next big physical event after finishing the duathlong was a 50 mile bike ride Bike Boat Bike I did with Billy on June 2nd out in Greenport/Shelter Island. 

The scenery was amazing, riding along Shelter Island past fabulous homes and taking the ferry across was great fun.  You also passed all these amazing back country farm and vineyard areas along the route. The views of the water were great and we have some decent pictures - I will get the pictures from the first race with Jen as well as from our 50 miler and post them shortly.  We (Billy & I) were very excited at having gone this distance - previously this year we'd done some 20/25's and even a 35 while vacationing in Cape Cod along the CAPE COD RAIL TRAIL, which I highly recommend for cyclists. However, finishing 50 was a big accomplishment.  Shelter Island was somewhat hilly and provided a challenge but after that first 15 it was relatively flat until the end when around 40 you encountered some hills along the north shore.  We took a break at mile 35 and I was very glad because I had started to hate sitting on the bike.

At the start of the season, I had wanted to work on my cycling more as I could use some speed and endurance and I have a huge downfall of not standing up to get uphill and applying brakes on the downhill but I am getting better and the training of being on the road and not a spin bike is helpful.  During our Memorial Day trip to Cape Cod we did 35 miles on Day 1, 15 on Day 2 and 20 or more on Day 3 (which was actually in CT as we'd gone back to my parents and that was on the Farmington Rail Trail. The trip to Cape Cod was great, we stayed in Chatham and as a reward for running early each day and working out and going biking on our last day there my toesies got a spa reward.

Happy Training and Racing! Keep on TriN!

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