Thursday, April 2, 2009

UCSB Tri... welcome to 55 degree swims

Posted by Ryan Borger on Sunday, September 6, 2009
Last Sunday I used the local UCSB olympic tri as a training race, to get some experience and a very hard workout. Results at I was hoping to get the time a little under the 2:05, but it was ok considering the hard training week I had, the course, and the wave 4 start. It was a collegiate regional championship race also, with all the CA teams (Cal, Stanford, UCLA, UCSB, Cal Poly...) so the top college guys and "elites" went in wave 1. I was hoping to race the college guys head to head, but the race director refused to put me in wave 1 after several email exchanges, since I don't have an elite license yet (although he put Mike Smith, a 45 year old stud and 7-year pro who I swim with often at the pool, in the first wave, since he's won the race the past few years). Mike finished 2nd to me by 3:18, but he said he made a wrong turn on the first run loop so he would have been closer). He's a fellow Westmont grad, who still trains 2-a-days. He told me about a junior college track meet 5k a few weeks ago, and we both hopped in it for a hard workout. I ran 16:16, nothing too special but a good hard workout, and he was only a few seconds back at age 45! Anyways, Mike tried to convince the RD to move me into wave 1 also. I told the RD I'd raced in the elite wave at the Toyota race and explained it will make for a better overall race, and it's dangerous to pass 3 waves of people on a 5 foot wide narrow bike path (open to public) the first 6 miles of the bike course. It was a little frustrating trying to get around everyone as I started in the last wave of the day, but that's part of racing sometimes. The top college guys were flying in the college race, as this was their tune up for nationals. Chris Stehula, who got 2nd in the college race, is a pro. I've seen him race last year when he was 4th at the Scott Tinley race in a good pro field. So there were a few current and future pro's in that race. Props to the college boys.
The swim was poor for me. The ocean was 55 degrees and brrrrr!! I tried to do a warmup and lasted about 30 seconds before heading back to the beach. I knew it would just make me colder. I wore 2 caps which probably helped some. I shivered for about 15 min since it was cloudy and windy, waiting for the other waves to take off, then on we went. My timing chip fell off (the 3rd time this has happened, you'd think I would learn :) as I dove in, so I had to stop for about 15 seconds to grab it and re-strap it on my leg, which meant a horrid start and the fight to get around everyone. I hadn't done an ocean swim in 5 months, and felt like training with a water polo team would have helped better than swimming laps in a pool, fighting the choppy waves. The swim exit was rough with huge rocks I slammed into and kept falling over, but I made it out and up the 3 flights of stairs to T1.
The bike went ok after getting past the weaving slow girls on that narrow path the first 6 miles, and the 2 loop run was fine. I'm still learning how hard I can push on the bike. I ran 17:26 then 16:57 for each 5k loop, which was decent coming off the bike and on that course, which had some rolling sandy hills on the lagoon and 3 flights of stairs to go up each lap. I know I can run low 33s at least on a fast course when I'm fit. I put some electrolyte salt in my drink on the bike, seeing if that would help my cramping issues. I only felt the cramps starting to come the last mile of the run, tugging a little but never actually cramped up!! It's a first! I was super worried too, since I had a bad night cramp in my hamstring the night before. I have no clue why, since I was on my vitamins and super hydrated the 3 days prior. It was like college XC season all over again, I'd wake up weekly with a painful leg spasm. I'm excited my body is adapting to the training and I'm figuring out what nutrition I need to help the cramping. I didn't sleep again the night before the race. I need to learn to turn off my mind somehow. I haven't gotten a wink of sleep the 2 nights before my 2 races so far this year. It gets frustrating but I'll figure it out.
Training is going pretty well. Last week had some tough/good workouts with a hard swim and bike Monday, a brick that included a 50 min bike with 12 min all out time trial followed by a 9 mile run with 3 mile repeats around 5 flat in there along the beach path, and Friday a track workout that included 12x400m, then the Sunday race. Mom, Kristyn, and Anna came out for the weekend, which was good to give my life some balance and think about something other than triathlon. I need more balance in my life. I am starting to think about some possible changes for the future, that could involve grad school or a move, as well as trying to find a training team. Training alone has forced me be to disciplined and self-motivated, which is good in a sense, but I think I could really benefit from a group, both for training purposes as well as social.

...I'm racing the Hy-Vee Triathlon in Iowa June 28, my cousin Brent lives there so I'd have a place to stay and a chance to see him and have a little vacation and race together. It's a huge pro prize $ race on Saturday where all the best in the world come, and a pro card qualifier race for top 3 finishers in the age group race Sunday, so there will be some good competition. I've been wanting to visit Brent for a few years now.

No comments: