Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Why Train? Just Race!

I'm thinking of changing the name of this blog to "addicted to racing". It seems to fit lately. I seem to have lost my desire to do any real training, although I continue to work-out, it doesn't seemed to be focused in any particular area. Instead, I've just decided to race. 3 races in 4 days, 4 races in one week. I've come to the reality that I have a problem and probably need therapy. After the race Sunday I realized I was exhausted and needed to cool it for a couple of days, so just did some light running Monday and got lots of sleep the last few nights (i.e. 9-10 hours/night). Anyway, I'm trying to figure out what to with myself post tri-season. If I'm going to do a fall marathon, I need to start serious training next week. I'm also considering not doing a fall marathon and focusing more on bike specific races or maybe duathlon. The other possibility is to trail race - I would love to go back up to Vermont 50K and finally bag that race. That's an appealing option. Or ... not train for anything and just pick races!! Enough said here are the race reports:

Wildcat Triathlon
3rd Elite 7th overall
Swim: 6:57 Bike: 29:38 Run: 12:00 Total: 48:36

I thought I had a dynamite swim. I was right in the mix. Unfortunately, the swim is in the Merrimac, which is gross and I took a couple of mouthfulls. Got out and started hammering on the bike, worked hard with 2 our guys, passing and being passed, everyone kept pushing. I had a 16 year old pass me on the run, which I absolutely wasn't going to let him get away with that. Unfortunately, he was turning over so fast and I eventually broke. Anyway, three weeks of doing absolutely nothing and right back to racing! Good race, well organized and close, but swimming in the Merrimac - yuck. I would still do this race again though.

Clinton 5K
20:06 2nd in 40-44 and 7th overall 7:20 somethingish pace

This is a memorial race for Officer Chuck Martin. Mostly a cross country race up around the reservoir in Clinton, with uneven single track and hills. Race was put on by Central Mass Striders and was pack with runners and a big group of walkers. Fast pace of about 20 runners, many wearing CMS singlets, so I knew it was going to be a good race. Started picking off the pack which strung out as soon as we got to the trails. Finished strong holding off the former 2:30 marathoner in my AG. Great post-race banquet at the club with a huge spread (even cheesecake), beautiful trophies and a lot of fun. I befriended a bunch of law enforcement guys who would not let me buy a round after the lieuntenent (their boss) threw money on the table and told us to have fun. Great raffle afterward where I won a $200 membership to a fitness club - all on a $10 entry. A great race! Must do again next year! Thanks to our friendly local police officers.

Crane's Beach Triathlon
2nd Overall (all though I am listed as 8th - this is wrong and I think my time was 55:09, exactly 3min off - no chip=no splits).

Triathlete beware of any race that does not have a chip. I am glad I did this race because of the ocean swim. This is a local's race, which is in the 20th something year. Very disorganized (hence my place), without transition setup and has dangerous bike leg on busy roads. It was interesting to swim in the ocean, run on the beach and then finish on the bike. I had a really good race, but I'll pass on doing this one again (Oh, by the way, the awards are six packs of soda). They will eventually have someone get killed if they don't restrict the traffic on that road. Good luck.

Gardner Triathlon
Swim: 7:11 Bike:36:29 Run: 23:35 Total: 1:09:22
2nd Overall, 1st Elite

The call this Gilligan's triathlon because the swim goes around this nicknamed island in Dunn's Pond. It's good to see Max Performance adding competition to FIRM and the others. Overall a well organized race. I went out hard on this one and may have swum too hard, had trouble getting into my bike shoes and felt tired on the bike. On the run at the 2 mile marker I put on a huge charge with the opportunity to pick up a couple of places with a 2:20-25 half mile, only to find out there was a second 1 mile loop that went around the pond - oops! (that's called 3 races in 4 days). I thought I was going to die. I actually ran pretty well even though I had gone anaerobic and finished strong. This was a fun race that will appeal to small timers on the same weekend as Timberman.

Trying to figure out what I want to do the next few weeks. Maybe Chicopee and/or Hopkinton and maybe Sherborn/Dover. Any suggestions?



Friday, August 10, 2007

Ready To Go On A Racing Rampage!

The vacation is over. I'm fully recovered from the race. Everything that bothered me before, during and after the race seems to be gone. I am ready to get back to racing. The first race back will be this Sunday at the Wildcat Sprint in Lowell. I absolutely need to be in the first wave of the swim - hopefully it will just be a mass start. I know this course well because it goes down and around the Baystate Marathon course - it's flat, fast and I am going to hammer all-out on the bike. The run is short, so this should be a good experiment to see how fast I can go after all of those months of endurance training and racing. I haven't really done a whole lot the last three weeks. Did a little bit at the track the other day. I have been riding real light the last two weeks. There's not really any training to do for these races and I'm just going to race. After all, I am still pretty fit from the intense training for IMLP, that started all the way back in January. I have gained a couple of kilos from the vacation, but it is slowly starting to come off - too may all-you-can-eat buffets and the post race pie-athlons.
After this weekend, I have three races planned in four days. They are all short, so I don't think there will be any issues. Here's the schedule:

Wildcat Triathlon, Lowell MA Sunday Aug. 12
Clinton 5K, Clinton MA Thursday Aug. 16
Ipswich Triathlon, Crane Beach Friday Aug. 17
Gardner Heritage Triathlon, Gardner MA OR Sodus Point Triathlon, Rochester NY - both Sunday Aug. 19
Chicopee Triathlon, Chicopee MA Sunday Aug. 26
Hoptkinton Triathlon, Hopt. MA Sunday Sept. 9

I need to find out whether or not I'm going to be forced by my wife into traveling to Rochester, NY next weekend. If so, payment will be the Sodus Point Tri, but I would much rather race at the inaugural Gardner Tri. Anyway, I'll refine the schedule as I get closer to the dates and hopefully the entries won't close.

I posted this picture of the swim start becuase I am in there somewhere. It's not possible to identify anyone in that mess, but that's where I was - right in the middle, about two bodies from the line.

If anyone has any suggestions for races - triathlons, running, trail, etc. Let me know. I'm open for suggestions.