Saturday, August 13, 2011

100th post and Graniteman Big Lake Tri pics!

Me and my race buddy

The morning started with a 5am wake-up at the hotel. I should explain that we stayed at a hotel in St. Cloud MN which is about 25 miles from the race site. The reason for this was that our oldest daughter (Sassy) stayed at her Aunt and Uncles the entire week before and we were going to meet in St. Cloud to pick her up as it's about half way between our place and theirs. We thought it would be fun to get a room in St. Cloud, go to the race, then go back to the hotel and meet up with Sassy and have fun playing in the pool.

The night before, we drove to Big Lake MN and drove part of the bike course and checked out the parking situation. The bike course looked good; not very hilly, wide shoulders on the highway, and favorable for a bike pace PR. Then we went to the packet pick up and ate at the pasta dinner. We headed back to the hotel, played in the pool with our youngest (Drama), and then hit the sack.

Getting ready to race

My biggest little fan
Getting set up in transition on a perfect morning!

I got up at 5am, showered, got dressed, brushed the teeth, and got my bag and water bottles ready.  Then  my wife and Drama got ready. I ate a banana and a powerbar and we jumped in the truck and made our way to Big Lake. It was warm, but not hot and there was little overcast. The weather was good and the wind was calm.

I got my stuff set up in transition, body marked, and hung out for a while with my wife and Drama. Drama was having a good time watching all the people and all the attention she was getting. 

I'm the one behind the guy who's bent over...that didn't come out right.

Swim start

I'm out there somewhere

Exiting T1 with my little buddy cheering me on!
I got through the swim in 13:00 and was satisfied. My T1 time sucked, but since I didn't practice removing my wetsuit, I couldn't be mad. Besides, I was having a good time and I got to see my little buddy in T1 cheering my on.  The bike went really good, I was looking to finish in 45 minutes (15 mile course). The course followed the lakeshore on the west and north side and then after a few turns, we headed north out of town.  At about the half way point of the bike is the "lollipop" portion of the course. You basically took 3 left turns and then a right turn back towards town. At about mile 8 my time was 23 minutes. I was pushing a little on the way back, but not too hard, I didn't want to blow up on the run. I came back on the west side of the lake and knew I was under my 45 minute time goal. I unstrapped my shoes and glided into T2.  *15 miles in 43:43,  20.6 MPH avg. PR! *
T2 was pretty quick, but I started heading back out of the "Bike Out" exit when a volunteer corrected me  before I got run over. I was on a "high" from the bike and wanted to push the run. I used a short/quick leg turnover for the first few minutes as we left the park and ran along the west side of the lake. The other bikers were coming in and there was a lot of action to watch. I passed a few people in my age group and watched as the elites were coming back. I got to the turn around (11 minutes) and grabbed 2 cups of water; one I drank as I walked and the other I dumped on my head and back. I then tried to hammer it home. I passed a few more in my age group and finished the run in 22:05 (sprint tri PR!).

By the time I finished, it looked like it may rain, so I got my stuff from transition and we headed back to the hotel. Our oldest daughter, her 2 cousins, and her Aunt and Uncle met us at the hotel and we played in the pool and had a good time hanging out.

Overall, it was great weekend and I maybe I'll do this race next year...we'll see, I may have other plans.

Wondering what time the pool opens at the hotel.

Completely gassed! but thrilled about my finish time. 

I look high... must have been all the endorphins.

As you can see, it was a formal event.

Sassy jumping into the pool!


  1. Loved the recap. I have my first tri the last weekend in August and I am super nervous!

  2. What a great race!! You made me laugh with the "I'm the one behind the guy that's bent over". Thanks for sharing ;-)

    That last pic is priceless.

  3. Wow that last pic.. ingrained in my mind.. thank you. HAHA! Great job!

  4. Great job! Just wait until Sassy turns 6, thats when it gets more sassy! At least for Emma it was.
    That same guy I think was at the Mpls Tri, but was wearing a bald eagle/american flag speedo for the whole race...patriotic and traumatizing all at once.

  5. "....that didn't come out right" - No. No, it didn't.

    Great job on the race and great recap. Congrats on the bike and run PR's! Was it an overall PR?

  6. I think it's due to where I live but there are literally no open water swims here. I want to do one, I'm a good swimmer but afraid I'll freak out at what the water looks like! So i ask, what does the water look like when you're swimming??

  7. @ Tri4Success - yes it was an overall PR, but the swim distance for all the sprints I've done has been different, so it's not apples for apples.
    @Coy Martinez, once you get away from the beach, so can't see very deep into the water and depending on the person, that could be good or bad (that's just fine with me). The weeds tend to freak some people out, but it's not that bad. My googles fogged up a little, so nothing was very clear anyway.

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