Race Report: Mass State Triathlon 2017

Mass State Triathlon – July 9, 2017

Fran’s Race Report:

The 2017 Mass State triathlon took place on July 9th, at Lake Dennison in Winchendon, Massachusetts.  It’s a race that has a reputation of always taking place on the hottest day of the summer, but I think we got lucky this year because the temperature never got above 80 degrees.  This was my second Olympic distance triathlon and definitely my best race this year.

My training for this race perhaps wasn’t the greatest.  I ended up not following a formal training plan, and instead made up my own regimen as I went along that used some of the principals from the plan I’d used to train for my first Olympic distance race.  In the end, I may have done more training than a formal plan would have called for, but it was definitely less structured.  Another hiccup in the training was that I ended up having to travel for work for several days about a week and a half before the race, which disrupted my final training plans.  While traveling, I tried to tell myself that I was probably supposed to be tapering anyway, and then I did a last long workout when I got back before doing the real taper.  Perhaps the trip even helped in the end, especially because I was working outdoors in Florida, and just about any weather feels cool and refreshing after that.

The swim had the usual waves with mass starts.  I’d consider my swimming good but not spectacular, but I made some big improvements this year just by doing a better job of making sure my goggles didn’t fog up.  It’s amazing how much faster you can finish the swim course when you can actually see the buoys and aren’t constantly getting off track.

The bike course had some scenic sections, some bumpy sections, some parts with newly paved road, and one slightly dicey part that goes through a town center.  The race organizers assured the athletes that the bad patches of road would be fixed by next summer.  There are a few hills, especially in the middle of the course, but it’s fairly flat at the beginning and the end, which I think helped me because I could get used to being on a bike at the beginning and then prepare for the run at the end without also having to worry about anything too technical.  I thought there were also a surprising number of people pulled over with flat tires on the bike course.  There were also at least a couple crashes, one of which happened a short distance behind me that I heard but didn’t see. Fortunately, I made it back to transition without getting into any mishaps myself.

After a short bout of jelly legs coming off the bike, I ended up having a really good run.  This is most likely for two reasons.  First, the course is an out and back, so whenever I got to an uphill I could tell myself that I would get to run back down it later.  Second, I’d done the run leg as part of a relay with Z and Edith my first year on Team Envision.  It definitely helped to be able to tell myself that no matter how tired I might feel, I’d done that run before and I could do it again.  That’s made me wonder if I ought to try and do the run course in isolation before other future races, maybe it would help when the temptation to walk gets strong.

My official time was 3:13:44.9.  It’s not a spectacular time by any definition, but I achieved both of my main goals for the race: to finish in under 3 hours 15 minutes, and run the entire run course.  I’m looking forward to doing this race again next year and improving even more.

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Race Report: Buzzard’s Bay Sprint Triathlon 2017

Buzzard’s Bay Sprint Triathlon – September 17, 2017

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Amanda’s Race Report:

I attended the Buzzard’s Bay Sprint Triathlon as the runner in the relay with Z and Ruth. The morning started off cloudy but the sun came out in full force by the time I was running. There were strong winds in the morning, and the race volunteers couldn’t keep the swim buoys out in the water! It appeared to be an advanced and unpleasant swim, partly due to the weather that day. But also given that it’s an ocean course requires some solid swimming experience. The staff were recommending that anyone not comfortable switch to the duathlon. I probably wouldn’t feel comfortable swimming at Buzzard’s Bay even on a nicer day! The run was very pleasant with pretty and changing scenery… down a road, by some Cape houses, out and back to Gooseberry Island, and then through a camp ground. My most notable practical observation is that there was really no shade or cover anywhere on the run course. I put on sunscreen (a must!) but would also have a visor or sun glasses next time.

Race Report: New England Season Opener Du Tri 2016

A strong start to 2016 triathlon season!

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Team EnVision showed up in force for the Max Performance Season Opener Du Tri 2016! We had athletes racing in both the duathlon and the triathlon, plus a few more volunteering and cheering.

Anticipating cold water on race day, a few of us headed to Walden Pond on Saturday for a test swim. The water was chilly, but the air was warm and the sun was shining. Really, it was a perfect day for an early season swim.

Sandra and Sarah at Walden Pond

In true New England fashion, the weather changed overnight and delivered us cool air, a cloudy sky, and heavy winds on race morning.

Melaney and the other duathletes started first with a 2-mile run, and then the triathletes walked down to the swim start. The Hopkinton Reservoir was a refreshing 59 degrees. The water was choppy due to the wind, but the current was flowing toward the swim finish line. We donned our wetsuits, doubled our swim caps, and were ready to race!

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The 10-mile bike course featured rolling hills through the Hopkinton State Park and surrounding communities. The course was well-marked and had plenty of volunteers. The long hill at the end can be a bit of a challenge, but the runners heading out on the other side of the road provided much-needed encouragement.

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The run course took us back out for a 5K through the park. Crossing the causeway, we were treated to strong wind gusts and a glimpse of the finish area. From there, it was just a quick turn past the beach to the finish line!

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As always, Max Performance hosted a well-organized event. It was a great day and a successful start to the season for Team EnVision. We look forward to conquering this course again in September at the Title 9 Women Only Spring Triathlon!

Late season race reports!

TE ladies have been busy in August and Sept with two team race series events and a whole bevy of other triathlons, swims, road and trail races, etc etc. Here are notes from a few:

Sharon Triathlon

The Sharon triathlon (Max Performance) was a team series event held August 10 in Sharon, MA and had a big group of racers plus two power relay teams. Here are a few notes from the day by those who raced:

Sara’s race report for the Sharon tri:
It was my first race with Team Envision and I really enjoyed the company and the support. The conditions were perfect, right water temperature, the pond was not the best place to swim but nice. The bike course very flat and fast, I guess I was feeling very well so I just enjoyed biking. The run course so lovely around the pond, lots if shadow. And then the support on the finish line was unexpected and really necessary. I came in 15 which is probably my best result ever, so I guess my training paid me back! A really nice race!

Laurie’s race report for the Sharon tri:
A great day at the races for TE!  I think we had 15 members racing, 2 former members racing, and 2 TE cheerleaders.  Wow!  5 of our 15 participants made up relays (a 3-person team, and a 2-person team).
Sunny, warm morning, maybe a little hot by the end of the race, but other years have been cool and overcast, so I wasn’t about to complain (and since I was only swimming, I was very happy not to be freezing for a change).
Congratulations to everybody who competed!  Extra kudos to Z for getting on the podium, and to our 3-person relay (Laurie, Cathy, Diane) for winning the female relay category.  LOVE getting a pint glass as a prize.
Former TE member, Bonnie, also made it onto the podium!
Lots of hanging out talking and eating after the race – meeting new members, and reconnecting with other teammates.  Special thanks to Amy and Anika for coming out to cheer us on.  If there was a cookie award, I think Anika would have won it:  fabulous M&M chip cookies.
Another fun outing with Team EnVision!

Title IX triathlon

The title IX all women’s triathlon is a perennial favorite among TE racers for it’s fast and pretty course, encouraging environment, and (like all Max Performance races) great organization and course support. TE had 8 racers participating, and it was another gorgeous sunny day in Hopkinton this year. Pics are below!

Buzzards Bay triathlon

The final Max Performance race of the year was the Buzzards Bay triathlon. Check out Z’s race report for the day:

The ocean at Horseneck Beach on September 14 was an incredible caribbean blue and 69 degrees for Ruth Tannert’s first ever sprint relay swim.  Ruth had a knee injury  this year and hasn’t been able to run.  To make up for it she crushed the 1/4 mile stretch of Buzzards’ Bay  swimming with the current and made her way between the dunes to T1 to hand of her chip to Zabeth Billingham.  This was also Zabeth’s first ever relay and she really enjoyed the relatively flat 14 mile bike course through absolutely stunning farm vistas overlooking the ocean and over a bridge with yachts on either side.  The beautiful though windy course allowed Z to post a  sweet PR  21.9 mph average on the bike leg before zooming to a stop in T2 to continue with the run.
The 3.1 mile run was also windy, but a gorgeous loop out a narrow causeway to Goose Island, then back through the beach campground and finally through the Max Performance arch where Zabeth enjoyed the watermelon and bananas.
Zabeth and Ruth faced competition in the form of several groups of 20 something amazons.  Nevertheless our seasoned TE ladies triumphed,  winning first in the women’s relay category and scoring a case of blackberry Hint Water in the giveaway.
Both ladies highly recommend this race. It’s a beautiful fast course with the usual superb Max Performance organization and Megan’s cheery greetings in transition.
If you like beach plums, bring a bucket next year when you do this race, because they were perfectly ripe at Horseneck and ready for jam making!

As always, here are pics from these events and others including Z racing at Rev3 Maine and more!

 

Title 9 was a success!

It was a chilly morning a couple of weeks ago when TE headed out to Hopkinton State Park.  There were so many of us there that I think I lost count!  I think there were 10 ladies racing and just as many volunteering.  It was great to see husbands, husbands-to-be, and even brothers come help out the team for the morning. 🙂

The volunteers started out by body marking….you can see we have fun no matter what task we are given.  Once the body marking was done we were all divided up to go man our stations along the route.  Some of us were directing racers, others were delivering much needed hydration, and, of course, everyone was cheering!

The race finished off with a great BBQ by the TE members.  Lots of goodies to eat after a hard morning’s work!

Sharon Triathlon

Team EnVision had a great showing at the Sharon triathlon on August 12th….10 women racing!!  The morning was gray and drizzly – no, make that rainy – when we arrived to set up.  The water was a bit choppy and not extremely inviting even though it was a warm 81 degrees (not wetsuit legal).  There were rumors of a delayed start, but by 8:00 the skies were getting a little lighter and the rain had stopped.

The race had the feel of a small-town event even though there were close to 600 triathletes in attendance.  People lined the streets along much of the bike and run courses to cheer, clank cowbells and yell encouragement.

The Team EnVision relay came in 1st place in the women’s relay division, and 2nd overall!

It was fun to hang out together after the race, eating and chatting, and try our luck at getting picked for Max Performance’s great give-aways.  Z scored with her, umm, complimentary Facebook post.  Enjoy the pics!!

Amazing Racing

Wow!  That’s a good word to sum up yesterday’s activities from the ladies at TE.

Two of our members traveled down to Geneva, NY to participate in the Mussleman Half Iron.

Ten,  yes ten, members traveled to Winchendon, MA to participate in the Title 9 MA State Olympic.

It was a hot day, but spirits remained high and many racers completed their first races at the respective distances.

Stay tuned for full race reports and photos.