We arrived late on Friday night in the big city of Crystal River, Florida. Reminded me a lot of DeLand/DeLeon Springs area. Full of Mom and Pop establishments and good ol' boys driving trucks sporting Confederate flags, but still a nice, relaxing stay. Did not get to sleep till late, but for once didn't wake up at 1:00 AM with anxiety, so felt pretty rested in the morning. We drove out to the race site after we checked in but couldn't get a good sense of what it looked like. I did get to mentally make some landmark associations for the bike and run, which always helps me.
We woke up at 4:30 because we wanted to get there early since there was no pre-race packet pick up and we wanted to be sure to get decent parking. It went smoothly, and got our numbers quickly, got the bikes tagged, and entered transition to set up. It was open racks, so we got to choose. We grouped our stuff together which made it nicer than we usually have.
After setting up we walked down to the water to see what it was like. It was SO flat and warm it was almost unbelievable. Because of the spring the water was a mix of salt and fresh, so even if you got some in the mouth it was bearable. Made it a nice swim route, and for once I was calm entering the start.
As usual I was in the second to last wave of six (3 minutes between each) but for the first time Jennifer and I were in the same wave (they put Athena and Clydesdales together). A nice change of pace entering with a teammate, even though I knew she would pass me eventually. Gun went off at 7:42 and started comfortable and slow. Got to the first buoy quicker than I expected and had to switch quickly as I kept swimming. Corrected myself and headed to the turn back buoy with the current. When I turned back to the beach I should have sited better because the current got me and took me North. I had to completely turn around to get back on course which cost me at least a minute, but all in all was my best swim so far. Does wonders for my psyche. :) (9:08)
Relatively quick for me, so I am getting better. Starting to learn a few tricks in getting in and out faster. Then saw a fellow racer we know from the Oronman Store, Jon Leino, whose time was 37 seconds. Cripes. How THE HELL does he do that??? (5:31)
A nice flat course, out and back. A few inclines but not too bad. Expected to do A LOT better than I did, but as it was did the same as last week. I caught myself zoning out on the return trip when we started seeing the runners. Got lost in looking at them and the scenery and dropped to 15 mph pace without realizing it. That won't happen on #2 in July, so learned my lesson. Also overloaded the gel carrier on bike and could get it opened. Another lesson learned. Drank well during the ride and paced for stretched at 18-20 mph, so it was better, even if it didn't show in the time. (59:48 / 15.2 mph pace)
Uneventful. In and out fast. Could still be faster. Legs felt better than they have in the last two coming off bike, but still not fully there. (3:15)
Same issue as the last two. It takes me half the race to get my legs back, then I am fine, but by that time my pace and time is so far gone I can't make it up. I am entering the training phase with TNT for the Disney Half Marathon in October, so maybe the run's while get easier. I also need to do more running off the bike in training. I have a month to work on it before next race. Overall time was better, but it was 1/10th shorter course. (48:13 / 16:04 pace)
Total Time 2:05:55
As usual, here are some pictures to end it with:
|Flat as Glass and Bath Water Warm. Just like I want it. :)|
|Jennifer and me after the race at Team Psych tent|
|With Team Psych founder Mark Davis|
|Crystal River Nuclear Power Plant. Love it.|
|Love the marshes here|
|For once I look decent. No belly showing in this one like the one above thank God.|