Big update is the joy of tapering, followed by the agony of racing. I was pretty fired up to do the Patriot Half Triathlon, which is a 1/2 Ironman distance race, only you can’t call it that because “Ironman” is trademarked, meaning that any reference to distance other than “Half Triathlon” risks legal action. It is a great race that keeps improving every year (third year in existence). I’ve done it every year, if you want to count last year’s aquabike (Swim – Bike). The organizers moved up the race from July 4th weekend to mid June, making it the perfect tune up for Ironman Lake Placid.
Long story short: I got a flat at mile 4 of the bike. Of course, this happened just after my friends in the Landry’s van rolled by me. I kept thinking “Do I have a flat? I hope I don’t have flat. I think I have a flat.” And the comments of “That sucks” as people rode by was a big confidence booster.
I remember a triathlon that was televised, where a French guy was leading, only to get a flat tire. He then cried (literally) to the camera: I got a flat. Kind of funny. It wasn’t that bad. Although it did bring to mind some wonderful flat tires in triathlon history, just this gem from Norman Stadler in the 2005 World Championships:
You gotta love the big German. Although, when I was trying to fix the thing I was tempted to do this:
But, since I don’t have the money for a new one or repairs, I resisted and just got back on the bike.
Overall, the race went well. A solid swim where I was 25th overall (big improvement); an even bike split for the two loops (sans the wheel change) and a 2:32 time (22.5 mph average); and the 6th fastest run split at 1:29 low. I was grinding all day, and ended up 18th overall, and 4th in my age group. The great thing about being fourth in your age group is that you don’t have to stay for the awards. Minus the bike incident, I would have probably been in 7th or 8th overall and 1st in my age group. Oh well. First flat in a triathlon for me (don’t ask about cyclocross malfunctions).
Previous week did the Ashland tri, in the rain, again. Another much improved swim, faster bike, and faster run than last year. Got me 8th overall and 1st in my age group. If you subtract the pros from QT2 that came out to entertain the wet masses, I was about 4th. All in all, great training for Lake Placid. Now three more weeks of large volume and tired days. But only three more weeks, and then onto the show.