I have never done a duathlon. We don't have many here in Hawaii, I think there are 2 a year. It's just not popular. So this would be a new experience for me.
I arrived at the start/finish/transition area at 5:15 a.m. The race was scheduled to start at 6:30 so I had plenty of time to set up my area, use the bathroom, eat my breakfast, use the bathroom, what is it about race morning and the bathroom????
After roaming around for an hour it was time for the athlete's meeting. Here is where they explained the duathlon. We would do a 1 mile run, 12 mile bike ride, and 5k run. The route of the 1 mile run was across the grass of the park to the bike path on the other side. Okay, this would be bad. Every since my ankle problems last year I don't do well on uneven surfaces. Luckily it was only 1 mile and we were on grass for about 1/3 of that.
At 6:30 on the dot the horn goes off and we go. They had this bizarre inflatable arch that we had to run through and only about 3 people across could fit so there was a real bottleneck at the start. Off we go across the grass. I'm moving slow and watching my footing. People are passing me left and right but I refuse to move any faster, I do not want to hurt myself. Finally we hit the bike path and I took off. Now I'm passing people. Before you know it we are in T1. Time: 14:16
Most of the bikes are gone, god I hate that!!!! I change shoes, throw my helmet on, grab my bike and run. Now I can ride. I have these large, powerful thighs and I laid it on. Right out of T1 I was passing people. Within the first mile we hit this agonizing hill. It's a pretty good climb and it goes on for about 4 blocks. I powered up that as well as I could and I managed to pass a couple of people. Woo Hooo!!! Once we crest that hill we turn on to 18th Ave. which is a major downhill. As soon as I got around the corner I poured it on and I hit 33 mph going down that hill. I couldn't believe it, that's the fastest I've ever gone on a bike. The rest of the bike was pretty uneventful. It was 2 loops and I did very well, passing people almost all the way. The only time I got passed was when the elites came by on their 2nd loop. Otherwise, I was hot and there was no stopping me. When I came in from the 1st run I was in 176th place. After the bike I was in 126th place. Does that give you an idea how I was flying??? Okay, bikes over into T2. Time: 47:08
Off on the 5k. I was having a little problems in the early part of this. I couldn't seem to catch my breath while running. I was starting to get a little concerned but when I stopped and walked within 30 seconds I was fine. When I hit the 1 mile marker I realized what my problem was. I had done the 1st mile in 11:10. I don't run that fast. At least I knew what was wrong. I slowed my pace a little and took some short walk breaks and was fine for the rest of the run. I felt really good and had to force myself to take walk breaks. I wanted to keep running.
Before I knew it I was turning into the finishing chute. This again was over the grass and I was careful not to hurt myself at this point. A couple of people passed me, those who could really turn it on over grass. About 50 feet from the finish line it became a dirt path. I still had the energy to turn on the after burners for the final stretch. Time: 38:16.
The complete numbers:
1 mile run: 14:16
12 Mile bike: 47:08
A couple of weeks ago I set some time goals for myself. I wanted to do 45 on the bike and 35 on the run, for a total time of 1:30. I'm pretty pleased because I came pretty close. Overall it was a great race and it was fun. I like doing new and different things.
Oh yeah, Beansprout was absolutely right. This did show me what I need to shake up and where I had gotten to comfortable in my training :)
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