Friday, October 05, 2007

Oly Tri Preview

This Sunday is the Health First Tri in Melbourne, FL, my second official tri this year and sixth overall tri. I'm doing the olympic distance event, meaning a 1.5K (0.9 mi) swim, 40K (24.9 mi) bike and 10K (6.2 mi) run. It's not my favorite tri distance because the swim is about 3/4 that of a 1/2 iron tri swim while the bike and run segments are only about half, so more time spent proportionally on my weakest sport.

But I did this race last year and am familiar with the course. There'll be ~500 total participants including the sprint tri folks, so probably about half doing the oly tri. That's considerably smaller than the ~2000 who were at my last race back in May, Florida 70.3. It'll be a great opportunity to see where I'm at with my swimming and get more tri experience under my belt for my A race next month, Miami Man, which is a 1/2 iron distance tri.

So what's my goal for this race? Well, the swim is in the Indian River, which is brackish water (no amoebas!) and usually 83+ degrees this time of year, so no wetsuits allowed. Last year, I think there was a slight current because it took me a bit longer than I expected to finish (47 vs. 45 minutes) and I swam the entire way on my own. This year, I hope to finish the swim in under 40 minutes.

My bike and run times should be better as well because I used this race last year to practice my pacing strategies for Ironman Florida. I really only had one swim pace back then so my IM swim pace was my oly tri swim pace. However, that's definitely not the case with my biking and running. I'll be using my new aero bike helmet for the first time in a race and pushing much harder so unless I flat out, I shouldn't have a motorcycle following me ;-) And together with a strong run, if all goes right, perhaps I'll have a chance to finish in the middle of my age-group standings or better (last year I finished 9/12).

But weather could be more of a factor this year once on land. We've got a tropical front coming in this weekend, bringing with it higher than usual winds and possibly some rain. With the humidity factored in, the temperature at the start is supposed to feel like a whopping 89 degrees!

I just may be happiest in the water :-)


MarathonChris said...

Have a great race!! I think the chances of rain are less on Sun than they are tomorrow - so hopefully that will work in your favor! I can't wait to hear about how the swim goes since you came back from swim camp!

Petraruns said...

Good luck Shirl! You've worked so hard - particularly on your swimming - I hope you have a great race day and that it all comes together for you. Enjoy yourself!

Wendy said...

Good luck and enjoy!

(What the others said about swimming!)

Maddy said...

Good Luck tomorrow! My TNT coach is also participating.

No amoebas! Yay!

You've worked hard on the swimming part. You're going to rock this one!

TJ said...

hope the weather cooperates and you have a great race.

IrishBlue said...

I hope the race went well for you today and you had great weather.

lizzie lee said...

Wow, humble triathlete.... I hope you had a good time. I don't think I could ever do that.

keep running