Sylvania Triathlon in Sylvania, Ohio. The site of this years USAT Regional Championships. That sounds impressive don't it? Well, its not. The only qualification to race is having the credit card to register online. But if you have the desire to compete at the USAT Nationals, you need to qualify at sanctioned events and this is one of them.
What and where is Sylvania, Ohio? Sylvania is a suburb of Toledo and, well, that's about it. However, notable residents do include Chip Davis (founder and leader of the music group Mannheim Steamroller) and Mrs Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes. Myeah. That's right.
Game time weather was in the low 60s with a north west wind and overcast skies. By the time we made it beach side for the national anthem it was spitting rain a little and by the time my wave went off we were in a steady drizzle. I was plenty goose bumpy having to stand there in the cold sand for about 40 minutes waiting to go. Really wish I had thrown a long sleeve throw away shirt into my transition bag to have with me down by the beach.
To call this a lake was a stretch. To get the full 1500 in we swam a rectangle that was basically the whole body of water. Nice venue though. Really clean beach and beach amenities. The size of the lake was no match for this summer's weather. Water temp at the start was in the low 80s. This meant no wetsuit. And anyone who knows me will agree that I am very Linus about my wetsuit - it is my security blanket. We have a special bond. But get this....my time out of the water was about 27:36 which would be a new PR for me for an Olympic swim. And that is sans wetsuit. Really big deal for this wee man. In all three of my triathlons this season I set a new personal best swim time for that distance. Still comparatively slow but I will stake claim to any improvement.
T1 | 1:18
Being from Chicagoland I know flat. And this was flat. Some false flats but not one hill. I used three cogs the entire ride and if it weren't for my cycling kryptonite (flat into wind) I would've probably only used two. By the time I hit the mount line out of transition it was raining steady. Cornering was slow but there weren't too many of those and folks were riding smart. I wasn't peaked for this race (training wise) and really haven't had any tempo or hard rides in over a month. My goal was go out with effort but to stay out of the pain cave. I can't afford sore legs in the middle of marathon training right now. I normally like to have a 21mph average or higher but given my effort and training I thought this was pretty solid.
T2 | 1:21
Oy. What is usually my strength has turned out to be my Achilles this year. Immediately coming off the bike I felt great. I had a lot of bounce and pop. Having read about the course and given the ideal running conditions (even with the rain) I really thought it was go time. But there I was again between mile's 1 and 2 massaging and stretching out both quads - had to stop twice. At least it was nowhere near as bad as Pleasant Prairie earlier in the summer but I lost time having to completely stop and because I dialed down my pace after that until I was confident the cramps were gone. The Salt Sticks that I've been incorporating on the bike and run probably saved this from turning into an absolute fail. But it would seem that I need to pop one or two more on the bike to set me up properly. Not happy but not that upset either.
So that wraps up 2011 tri season for me. It was a year of eh. Looking forward to more Ironspousing the next few weeks with the big race up in Madison on Sunday September, 11th. Then for me its marathon time on October 2 up in Milwaukee. Yippee-ki-yay my bitches!