Monthly Archives: July 2009

"TRI"ed It, Loved It

Way back in 1991 I did a duathlon. Actually, back then they called this particular event a bi-athlon. It consisted of a 3 mile run, 15 mile bike ride, and a 2 mile run. It was fun to combine running with cycling and I starting thinking about adding in swimming and doing a triathlon. I bought a book about triathlons, “Scott Tinley’s Winning Triathlon”. I bought a new road bike, a Specialized Allez. Before I could do a triathlon I moved to Indiana. I thought this would be a good move because triathlons being relatively new were not all that common back then, but there seemed to be lots of triathlons in central Indiana.

The years ticked by and I never did a triathlon. In many of those years I didn’t even do any running, cycling, or swimming. In 2002 I started getting serious about running. I started doing marathons and ultra-marathons. After a few years I started thinking about the triathlon again. Lots of thinking, but not much doing. In December 2008 I finally made a decision, in the summer of 2009 I would do a triathlon. I wiped the dust off the old Allez, took it into a bike shop to get the bearings greased, wheels trued, and rusty cables replaced. In January a friend who didn’t know of my decision asked if I would do him a favor. He wanted to get in shape and do a triathlon in the summer and wanted me to do it with him for moral support. I just laughed and told him it was funny he asked me that because I had already decided to do a triathlon. Along the way there were some setbacks. In February I lost my job. From March through May I struggled with a calf injury. It was starting to look like I might make it through another year without doing a triathlon.

In June I ran a 50k and didn’t have any ultras planned until September. That was just too long to go without a challenge. My friend had said he was signed up for the August 22 Indy Sprint Triathlon. In late June I took the plunge, I signed up for the July 18th Indy Sprint Triathlon. Well the 18th has come and gone and I am at long last a “triathlete”. It was spectacular! I loved it. It was about 59 degrees at the start, so between the cold and nerves and I was shivering almost uncontrollably. The water felt great, just about the right temp. I was a little worried about being able to finish the swim, but I made it. I won’t say it was easy, but the swim wasn’t as difficult as I had feared. As you can see from the times below my swim and transitions need a little work, but I’m pleased with my bike and run times. My overall time was 1 hour 13 minutes 27 seconds which put me in 206th place out of 555 finishers. Not bad for a beginner.

Swim 14:11.7 (432nd) Transition 1 02:34.5 (398th)
Bike 0:32:19.3 (18.6 mph/202nd) Transition 2 02:33.0 (523rd)
Run 0:21:49.0 (07:16.3/ 83rd)
Total time 1:13:27.4 (206th)

This year the Indy Sprints have changed from wave starts to individual starts. This is supposed to relieve congestion at the start and I guess it works. There was a little bumping along the way, but the start was pretty smooth. Having survived the first attempt, I signed up for the August 22nd event. My son who went along and took pictures decided he wanted to do a triathlon and so he also signed up for the August 22nd event. He even bought himself a road bike yesterday. Should be lots of fun. I can’t wait.

Having bib number marked on arms.

Entering the water.

Running through transition to the bike start.

Starting the run.

I Will Tri

Way back in 1993 I moved from very rural Western New York to Indianapolis, Indiana. I was a little apprehensive about the move but I was also a little excited because I had read in some Triathlon magazine (yes, magazine, this was the dark ages before I did everything on the internet heck I didn’t even own a computer) that there were several triathlons in central Indiana. I had never done a triathlon; although, a year earlier I had done a run, bike, run bi-athlon. Now these events are referred to as duathlons. Well, a mere 16 years later I have finally signed up for my first triathlon, the Indianapolis Sprint Triathlon Series at Eagle Creek Park on July 18th. Nothing too difficult, just a little 500 meter swim, 10 mile bike ride, and 3 mile run. My main goal is to make it out of the water under my own power. If I can do that I think the ride and run will be fun. I’ve done 500 meters non-stop in a pool, but in the open water of a lake with no lane markers and other swimmers kicking me?? Stay tuned…