Ok...I have been thinking about this for far too long so I need to get it down on paper. This may not be a lengthy post, but setting goals is important for me. I would appreciate any feedback fellow triathletes can give me about what I did last year and what I think I can do this year. So lets do this ...
If you read my race report from last years race you know I had issues on both the swim and on the bike; one mental and one mechanical. Fingers crossed that I won't have either this season.
Last year I had my normal panic when hitting the water and went from kayak to kayak for half of the swim. At that point I had acclimated and got my head down and swam the final 1000m pretty well. My results were a 50:47 with a 2:37/100m pace.
So, here's the thing, since that swim I have not panicked at all in any race, so I am holding out hope that my mental issue here is under control and I will be able to swim. My training pace is in the 2:15-2:30 range, but as you can see above, the current took a bad start and made it pretty acceptable for a normal, non-current race. I am thinking I can hit a 2:00 - 2:10 pace here, which makes my goal a 41:49.
Last year was a long time here, partly due to longish run to T1 but mostly due to getting my head together and starting strong on bike. Last year was a 9:57. This year I am shooting for 5:00.
I knew something was wrong from the start. It felt like I was peddling through mud. I struggled until the first aide station, 15 miles in, then got off the bike to see what was wrong. The back tire wouldn't turn at all. Seems the spindle on the back tire was working loose and the tire kept jamming against the frame. The mechanic fixed it for me (after informing me that I was too heavy to be on that bike) but told me I would have to stop from then on whenever I felt it rubbing again. The first stop added 20:00 to my race, the subsequent stops (there were four total) probably another 40:00 total. So meaning I added an hour to my ride. Not good. My race time was 4:25:35 for an average of 12.65mph. If you remove that hour it would have been 16.32mph. I will shoot for 15.5 and a time of 3:36:27. The way I see it is this ... if I had four stops and still managed almost 13mph, I should be OK.
My time here was OK I thought at 4:36, especially after that ride and how dead my legs felt. I did take some time to hydrate and gather myself. I think a 4:00 time is doable.
As you can imagine, after pumping that bike that hard for that long, my legs were shot. The run is my bad spot as it is, but I couldn't even start running until mile 2, and at that point it was still agonizingly slow. Add to that the rainstorm that pelted me for 5 miles and it was miserable. My pace was 17:34 for 3:50:18, bad even for me. If everything goes to plan (and it never does) I think I can pull a 14:00 or better (this is just me being realistic). That gives me a time of 3:03:27. I have never run a sub-3:00:00 Half Marathon, let alone after biking and swimming. This may not be realistic at all.
So, putting that all together I am looking to improve my race from last year's 9:37:00 to 7:30:44. That's a two hour improvement.
Is that too lofty??