French Creek Sprint Triathlon
May 22, 2016
Final Time: 2:11:43
Swim – 23:30 (~3:00/100 meters)
The swim was on a clear, calm lake. I felt pretty confident as we began, I even started in the middle of the group of about 40 swimmers (males 39 and under) opposed to waiting for my wave to go then begin swimming. That confidence quickly turned into my normal race day anxiety about 75 meters into the swim. At that point, I began to panic and acted as if I forgot how to swim. Breathing every 3-4 strokes and sighting after every third breath turned into breathing every other stroke and sighting much more often. I eventually pulled my self together to get the swim done before heading to transition 1.
Transition 1 – 4:11
The trot between the swim finish and transition 1 was about a quarter mile run through a sanded beach area, a muddy/grassy area, a paved street, then finally into the gravel transition area. I obviously took my good ole time cleaning myself off before heading into the challenging bike course.
Bike – 1:04:48 (11.5/mph)
Before the race began, a friend of mine warned me about this bike course, telling me how hilly it was. I was in no way prepared for what was to come; 12 miles with 1,757 feet of elevation! The course itself was an open road (open to cars) course with a simple out and back. The open road was no major issue as this race was not large in participants. In fact, I didn’t see more than 10 people at a time on the course until I got to a hill which had to be 2 miles long. I, along with everyone definitely struggled with that incline. MUCH MUCH later than expected I finished up then headed into transition 2.
Transition 2 – 2:11
I decided to take it easy heading into transition 2 following that challenging bike course. As I racked my bike, I had difficulties getting my running shoes on. I decided to put new Lace Locks on my new running shoes the night prior to the race. This made it quite difficult to get the shoes on comfortably in order to head on to the final leg of the race. I went out forgetting my race bib, ran back to put that on then went off to run a 5K through the park.
Run – 37:34 (12:07/mile)
This run was NOT easy like Sunday morning. HA! While in transition 2, a gentleman advised me to take it easy on the run as there were some pretty difficult hills. At this point that, taking it easy was the only thing I could to. After running 3.1 miles with 350 feet of elevation, I finally got it done, although it had to be my slowest pace EVER! Nonetheless, I was happy to get it done, no matter how long it took.
Overall/Final – 2:11:43
Overall, this was a small, locally ran, well organized race. The greatest benefit of participating in this, or any other early season race is being able to put your early/off season training to the test before the “main” races approach. I now know what things I need to focus on before I head into my next race. I was a bit bummed that there were no finisher medals, but that was quickly forgotten about with a free post race massage and a free hot food buffet. Also, I was happy to get back in the grove of training. This was the LITERALLY the third time I did anything physically following the Broad Street Run on May 1st due to a knee injury. Because of that alone, I am happy with my results and even happier that I was able to complete this challenging course without further injuring myself.
Big thanks to French Creek Racing (@FrenchCreekRacing) for putting on such a well organized event, and the folks from Levelen (@levelen4u/#teamLEVELEN) for allowing me to represent them in today’s race. Make sure you take a moment to check out their site/page and take advantage of the services they have to offer!