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Swim4Purpose: Doug Saar

Race Result

Racer: Sheila Mongeon
Race: Celebration Sprint Triathlon
Date: Sunday, June 26, 2011
Location: Columbia, MD
Race Type: Triathlon - Sprint
Time: 2:46:53
Overall Place: 859 / 947
Age Group Place: 6 / 10
Comment: My 1st Tri !!!!!



Race Report:

For the days leading up to the race, yes, I can say that I was excited. But the morning of the race, I was a bag of nerves. When I went to rack my bike on Saturday, they asked for the “sticker”. I pointed to the sticker that Princeton had put on the bike, indicating that it had passed, but she said no, your number sticker. I groaned… “This is my first race. I KNEW that I would forget something”. Thankfully, they let me rack my bike and the girl (I can’t remember her name) was SO good about showing me around the entire area – where I would leave the swim, up the hill with the bike, and out for the run. That was great.

RACE DAY:
It was great to have “family” at the MMTC tent to be with before the race (Thank you to everyone). I was most nervous about the swim – which showed.

SWIM: 35:42 (division average = 27:54:00) I wasn’t the last one out - there were 2 still in the water after me from my group!!! What can I say? I panicked! I am just excited that I didn’t use a kayak (to rest), swallow water, or drown! But I varied my strokes A LOT: about 10-12 freestyle then side stroke, modified breast stroke, and the back stroke a couple of times. I took my first swim class (8 weeks) in September 2010. It was horrible. All she did was watch us “swim”. So on June 5th, I started working with a coach, learning Total Immersion. I can see that that technique will help A LOT, but I need more time and practice.

T1: 4:40 (division average = 4:35)
I know that I walked to my bike (vs. running like everyone else) but I had to recover from the swim and save energy for the bike. I wanted to make sure that I “inhaled” a gel (with water) to make sure that I was at my “best”.

BIKE: 1:19:43 (average speed = 13.2) (division average = 1:18:05, speed of 13.5)
I am still VERY challenged with going up hills. I am puzzled how everyone else just “zooms” up them. It took me the first 2 miles to get my legs “working” after the swim so that is where I really lost a lot of time, compared to my practice sessions (fastest time ever was 1:13:48).

T2: 2:43 (division average = 2:33)
I thought that I did OK. I’m sure that I’ll get better with each and every race!

RUN: 44:07 (pace of 12:59) (division average = 45:27, pace of 13:22)
I’m obviously not much of a runner. Yes, I walked quite a bit, especially up Gatorade hill. I had a severe muscle spasm in my right upper shoulder, I know from the stress of it all. But with walking and applying some acupressure, it eased so I was able to continue on. I just felt “wiped out”. There was 1 lady in front of me for most of Gatorade Hill (both up & down) but at the bottom, I was able to pass her – I couldn’t let her beat me, not THAT close. Obviously, the best part was running over the damn, to the finish line. There were SO many people yelling my name as I came to the finish line. I can’t EVEN tell you how much that meant to me. Of course, I bawled when I crossed the line, I couldn’t believe that I was actually done – I had just completed my first Triathlon.

SUMMARY:
Although my times were about "average" for my division, it still is not good enough. I have A LOT of work to do: improve my open water swims, get stronger/faster uphills on the bike (any upcoming hill climbing clinics????), and run longer (no walking) and then faster for the run. Seeing Nicole’s numbers for her first Tri (she is my mentor) is definitely encouraging to me. So I now have 55 days to improve in all areas before Iron Girl, my next one!

Based on this race, to match the #1 for my division, I have to improve by the following times: swim = 23 mins; bike = 11 mins; run = 7 minutes. BRING IT!!!!!