4:30 or Bust: A Quest for Marathon Mediocrity

Posts Tagged ‘New York City Triathlon

Great job by Brightroom

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Wow, Brightroom did an awesome job getting pictures at the New York City Triathlon.  Check out my pictures here: http://www.brightroom.com/view_user_event.asp?EVENTID=47511&PWD=&BIB=3777.  Yeah, there are a lot of dorky looking ones, but some cool ones too, especially on the bike.  Gonna be hard trying to decide which one(s) to buy.

They actually have one of me coming out of the swim.  Since there is no race number visible, they must have done it by facial recognition?  Amazing!

Good job Brightroom!


Written by SCL

July 27, 2009 at 7:14 pm

New York Triathlon in the books!

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Raced in the New York City Triathlon yestderday.  Had a blast.  It was a rough race and totally beat me down, but I felt such a great sense of accomplishment afterwards.  Then, the roof caved in, I pulled a muscle in my lower back changing my clothes in the port-o-san, and will be in bed for a few days, and probably without running or biking for 10 days to 2 weeks.

Plenty of time to write up my race report.  In the meantime, here are the vitals:

  • Swim – 28:19
  • T1 – 6:27
  • Bike – 1:25:00
  • T2 – 2:43
  • Run – 1:04
  • Total – 3:06:27
  • Age Group – 348/418
  • Overall Place – not available

Written by SCL

July 27, 2009 at 10:14 am

5 days to go!

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5 short days left till the New York City Triathlon!  I just love the lead up and anticipation for a big race.  I usually don’t get to experience this in the summertime since I don’t do a whole lot of racing in the summer.  I truly hate the heat and humidity that goes along with it.  However, triathloning seems like the perfect summer sport (swim and bike is manageable in the heat) and has totally re-invigorated my summer workouts.

The idea of racing a triathlon myself first entered my consciousness in 2005.  I was in California to run in the Big Sur marathon (awesome race, and highly recommended, by the way) and we were visiting some friends in Los Gatos, CA.  While they were impressed that I was preparing to run the marathon, I was more impressed at their involvement in triathlons.  It seemed so out of reach for me, as I hadn’t ridden a bicycle in years, and couldn’t swim more than a length across a pool.

Then, in spring of 2007, I was in Central Park early for a NYRR race, and saw a bike race going on in the park.  Turned out it was one of the New York Triathlon Club biathlon events.  I decided that I really wanted to do that myself!  So, in June 2007, I finally relented and dropped the $1000 plus required to get a basic road bike, and started going on bike rides.  Signed up for my first biathlon in fall 2007, and first started really thinking that I could work up to a real triathlon.  Now, 2 years later, I’ve done 2 sprint triathlons, and am 4+ days away from my first Olympic distance tri!

In my final preparations this week, I had slated this morning for my last bike ride.  Dragged myself out of bed at 5:30, checked my computer and saw the rain coming.  Regardless, I got myself all ready to go out and brave the conditions.  I’ve never before ridden my bike in the rain, and actually saw this as a great opportunity to get some rain riding in just in case it was rainy on Sunday morning.  My conclusion was that biking in the rain gets one somehow more sopping wet than running in the rain, and now I’ve got some good ideas how to handle my gear and clothes if there is a threat of rain on race day!  In spite of the weather, and literally pouring rain, had a nice, easy, 11 mile ride.

I realize it is entirely possible that the weather forecast can change before then, but, currently, according to WeatherBug, Saturday’s forecast is rain free, and Sunday’s forecast calls for rain in the afternoon.  It will be hot, in the 80’s, but I think that is better than lots of rain on Saturday and Sunday morning.  I know that if there is heavy rain in the days leading up to a triathlon, it is possible for the swim portion to be cancelled.  Even though the swim is hardest for me, and worries me a lot, I’ll still feel cheated if the swim was cancelled.  Hopefully that won’t be the case!

Written by SCL

July 21, 2009 at 8:21 pm

NYC Triathlon Staging

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Less than 6 days to the New York City Triathlon.  Yikes!  Yay!  Help!

I finally figured out what was bothering me about the way the race is staged.  Bear with me, as I don’t get to the point for a few paragraphs.

Last week, race officials released the Athlete Guide, which has the start times for the various waves.  I’m used to road races where people usually line up by ability, so that the fastest people are in front and the slower people behind.  In the Philadelphia Triathlon last year, I entered in the Clydesdale division, which was one of the last to go, and the triathlon I did earlier this year was so small that the fastest people were by me before the swim was over.  That is the way it should be!

This race kicks off Sunday at 5:50 AM, with the professional men, and then professional women, and then the age group elites.  So far, so good.  Then, the oldest men and women divisions, following by the rest of the women, youngest to oldest.  So far, so good as well.  Then, some of the older mens divisions.  At age 38, I’m in 35-39, which has 4 waves, starting from 7:21 AM to 7:30 AM.  I don’t yet know which of those 4 waves I’m in.  Men 35-39 is followed by men 30-34, then men 25-29 and then last wave is men 24 and under.

I know I’m going to be one of the slower people on the course.  Based on my training, and what I know of the event, I think I’ll finish in the 3:20-3:30 range, which is pretty far down the scale of finishing times.  While people of all age groups and ranges will surely finish faster than me, it is most certainly younger men that will beat me out.  The problem?  Most of the men that are younger than me will be starting AFTER me.  This means they will be passing me the entire race.  Lots of people will be blowing by me on the swim (to be expected), but even on the bike and run, where I will be relatively stronger, 20 and 30 something guys, especially the type running this race, will certainly still be blowing by me.

I think that will be hard to adjust to.  I don’t mind being passed by faster people, but, the faster people should be starting before me, not after me, and I’ll have to constantly remind myself not to try to keep up with them, for risk of bonking too early.  I wonder how they come up with the staging, and if it is the same each year, or if it changes from year to year, and if other triathlons are staged similarly…

Anway, still super excited about the race, and my taper this week.  Did an easy 4.6 miler last night, swam 1000 easy meters this morning.  Rest of the week includes an easy bike ride tomorrow, a run on Wednesday, and softball Thursday night.  Friday and Saturday will most likely be days of total rest!

Written by SCL

July 20, 2009 at 4:38 pm

Starting to taper for New York City Triathlon

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Have started scaling back the bike rides and runs, in preparation for the New York City Triathlon, in 8 days!  I will still be swiming hard over the next week, since my swimming is so bad.  Swam twice this past week, but prior to that, it had been a month since I last swam.  Yesterday morning swam about a half mile, and it really wiped me out.  Made sure several of my laps were side stroke and back stroke, both of which I’ll be using a lot to get through the 1500 meters swim portion next Sunday.  I’ll plan to swim twice again this week, perhaps Monday and Thursday.

This morning, did a 4 mile run down to East River Park and back.   Will run once or twice again this week, but nothing more than 5 miles.  Will probably get 1 easy bike ride in this week as well.

I’m curious to see what the swim is going to be like in the Hudson River.  My assumption was that the river flowed from north to south, but that is not the case.  It is a tidual estuary, which means that it flows both north and south, depending on the tide.  From what I’ve read, the flow is south when between high and low tide, and the flow is north when between low and high tide.  For next Sunday, low tide is 7am, and my start time will be close to 7:30.  So, it will be starting to move to high tide, which I think means I’ll be swimming against a slight current.  The way the staging works, the elites and most of the women start  prior to 7am, and the men have the later start times, mostly after 7am.

Still really nervous about the swim, and how it might then negatively affect the rest of my race, but super excited as well.

Written by SCL

July 18, 2009 at 9:12 am

Great long bike ride yesterday

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Only 13 days till the New York City Triathlon!  Nervous about it in generally, and most specifically, nervous about the swim.  Since the pool I go to has been under renovation for the last 2 weeks, its been 4 weeks since I have last gone swimming.  Pool supposed to be open again as of today, so I should still be able to get 4 swims in between now and race day. 

Thanks to all the bike riding I’ve done lately, the tri distance of 24.4 miles does not scare me at all anymore.  Yesterday was my longest bike ride ever, at 36.5 miles!  See the main course here.  At the end I was really beat and  didn’t feel like biking through the streets of Queens and Brooklyn all the way back to the city.  So, I hopped on the A train, took it to Fulton St, and biked another 2.5 miles from downtown Manhattan back to my apartment.

It was a great day for bike riding, although a little windy.  Headed over the Manhattan Bridge, through downtown Brooklyn and then down 3rd Ave to the 68th St pier.  Took in the sights for a moment, and then followed the path along the Belt Parkway around to Coney Island.  Picked up a corn dog, and then followed the bike path all the way around to Flatbush Ave and took a right turn to Rockaway.  Brief stop at Riis Park to admire the beach, and then heading back to Queens by the long, long, long way of Cross Bay Blvd.  All in all, a great ride, and I’m hardly sore today, which is great news.  Took a few pictures, which you can check out on my DailyMile profile.

Was quite active over the last week.  Had good longish runs (6 mile range) on Thursday and Saturday, and rode my bike to and from softball on Wednesday.

On tap for this week is the gym and pool today, running tomorrow, softball (bike ride to/from again?) Wednesday and then time to start my taper into the triathlon…

One last note, so very thankful for the low humidity July.  Really making for nice training weather at a time of the year where that is usually not the case!

Written by SCL

July 13, 2009 at 8:22 am

Hill Repeats in Central Park

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The twist… on my bike, not on my feet!  First time I’ve done hill repeats on my bike.

I only have 19 days till the New York City Triathlon, and think I need a little more hill work on my bike.  So, last night, biked out to Central Park, did 3 hard repeats of Harlem Hill, and then a full loop of the park, including the hill again.  In all, it was about 17 miles.  Feeling great today, with the exception of my constantly nagging knee and groin.  Good news on the groin is that I found a stretch online that works the exact muscle causing me the most pain.  Trying to do that stretch once a day.  Still keeping it firmly in check.  Tendinitis in my knee is not as bad as it had been, and I’m continuing to ice it, and focus on lower body exercises at the gym.

Had a couple of other good workouts over the last week.

Ran 5.9 miles over the Williamsburg Bridge and back on Sunday morning.  It was a beautiful morning.  About 66 degrees with low humidity.  The sun was strong though, and was tiring on the bridge.  I had to stop at a bodega for water, which would not be necessary in cooler temps.  The bridge was not too crowded, and it was cool to see 3 other runners both times I crossed the bridge.  Guess I wasn’t the only one doing that workout!

On Saturday morning, I did a long bike ride at my house in New Jersey, from Little Silver to downtown Freehold and back.  Came out to about 29 miles.  The return trip was done about 7 minutes faster, I think because of the wind, and also I think the return trip has more downhills.  Length of the bike portion of the olympic distance triathlon (24.4 miles) does not scare me at all anymore!  As I mentioned, I just think I should work on hills a little more.

Also got a run in midweek last week.  It was on Thursday night, when it kept raining on and off.  Rained hard for my first 2 miles, which helped keep me cool in the humidity.  Overall, had a nice 4.6 mile run.

Just trying to keep on keeping on, in spite of the ‘discomfort’ in my knee and groin.  Very excited about the upcoming New York City Triathlon.  Biggest issue for me is swimming.  I have not been in the pool since my last sprint triathlon in Harriman State Park 3 weeks ago, and of course, the pool I go has been closed for the last week for renovations.  It opens tomorrow, so tomorrow, I will need to go swimming!

Written by SCL

July 7, 2009 at 7:58 am

Some day, I WILL do a half ironman

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T minus 31 days till the New York City Triathlon.  Need to get a good bike ride in this weekend.

I’m really high on triathlons after having a great time at Harriman State Park 2 weeks ago.  I WILL do a half ironman some day – they seem so cool.  I’ve getting notices from the Toughman Triathlon in Westchester that is coming up and I’m jealous that I currently could not come close to doing it.  2010 may be too lofty of a goal, but come 2011, I will complete a half ironman!

Did a 4 mile run to East River Park and back yesterday afternoon, after my 13 year old graduated from 8th grade / Middle School in the morning.  The humidity was up, and I had a tough time ‘finishing’.  Managed to keep the pace just under 9 mins per mile, but likely would have stopped to walk in the last mile if it didn’t start raining.  I HATE running in the summer!

Regarding the graduation…  It’s funny.  I’m 38 years old.  I don’t feel old, and even I don’t lament my birthdays going by – they don’t make me feel old either.  Maybe I’ll feel different when I get to 40 in a year and a half.  But, yesterday, my 13 year old graduating middle school and getting ready for high school in Sept struck me in an odd way, and actually is making me feel old.  I don’t like that!

Guess I gotta keep running! And biking! And swimming!

Written by SCL

June 25, 2009 at 4:04 pm

Lower Manhattan Loop run

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Was going to write this last night, but I happened to be watching the Mets game, which turned my stomach and put me in a really bad mood.  I’m getting over it now…

Did my typical lower manhattan 6.5 mile loop run last night.  I thought the weather was great.  Cool at 53 degrees, somewhat foggy and misty, and a bit humid.  You could feel the chill in the air, which I love, but I suspect we won’t have much of that anymore.  Supposed to warm up to the 70s again the next few days, then it will be May, and then it will get hot, and I’ll start to hate running again!

I thought I was having a really great run.  I mostly caught green lights so did not need to stop and barely needed to slow down at any intersections along the way.  I felt like I really picked up the pace the 2nd half of the run on the East River bike path, and really sprinted my way through the last half mile up Ave A.  At the end of my run, my watch said 1:02:17, definitely slower than I expected.  I’ve completed this in under 59 minutes a couple of times, and thought I would be in the 1:00 to 1:01 range.  I guess my lack of running the last month is having an effect on me.  Gotta step it up and be ready for the Brooklyn Half Marathon on May 30.

While the pain I felt the other day in the upper inner thigh went away (must have been from my bike ride on Saturday), I still have the lingering mild groin strain that has been bothering me for a few months now.  I’m going to continue to run through it, and ice and stretch, and hopefully it won’t get worse as I prepare for the New York City Triathlon in July. 

Change of scattered thunderstorms later today.  Was hoping to bike ride tonight – we’ll see what the weather looks like first.  If it is rainy, I’ll try to get to the gym to swim, although on Wed, there is only a 30 minute window for open swimming, 9-930.

Written by SCL

April 22, 2009 at 7:56 am

Blogging outdoors!

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It is still kinda cold outside, 40 degrees, but I’ve got spring on the brain and so am walking downtown to pick my 13 year old from dance class.  Stopped off at Madison Square Park to take advantage of the free wi-fi to kill some time.  Funny, last time I did this, I also had weather on the brain.  The answer to the question I posed back then is that the weather in Austin in Feb is wonderful!

On a more serious note, had a visit to my doctor today.  I’m used to dealing with running injuries, but lately having a health issue.  Nothing to be concerned about, and 2-4 weeks of Cipro will hopefully kill the bacterial infection my doctor suspects I have.  We’ll see!

Otherwise, had a great workout lifting weights at the gym last night.  Had another pathetic swim session in the pool, but I can already see some small improvements after 3 visits.  I still have 4+ months to get myself up to swimming a mile before the New York City Triathlon.

Probably will stay inactive tonight, and maybe drag myself out of bed for an early run in the morning.

Written by SCL

March 12, 2009 at 6:04 pm