Race Report: Patriot Half Triathlon 2017

Patriot Half Triathlon – June 17, 2017

Melaney’s Race Report:

I was fortunate enough to complete my first half iron in June 2017. I was definitely nervous signing up and committing in the fall of 2016 (since the race sells out early) but decided to take the leap after volunteering in 2016 and seeing others complete what I once thought was unaccomplishable. Gaining confidence through having three half marathons under my belt and being able to already swim a mile, I pushed myself to set a goal that I was not quite sure would be accomplished (always exciting but scary!). However, once I set a goal, in anything, I will figure out a way to best set myself up for success. This could be the scientist or stubborn in me. I set myself up to improve my bike over the winter with an indoor trainer and Computrainer classes at Fast Splits (thanks coach Karen!), I hired a coach (thanks Will @ TriHard!), swam through the winter with TE (thanks coach Becky!), and continued to run throughout the winter (thank you mother nature!). I’m sure it is obvious but goals are easier with support behind you. I followed my training plan as best I could and trusted that I had done what I could do to prepare for race day. There were definitely moments that were difficult in life and training and lessons were learned, such as ALWAYS practice race nutrition on a training day as pounding many many GUs may not agree with you : (

June 17: Race day came and I felt good and calm to just complete the race, not “race”, but finish respectably and enjoy it. I estimated my time around 6:15-6:30.

I arrived on race day with what I thought was plenty of time but quickly turned into a rush. Parking took FOREVER, so I had to rush to get marked and get my chip. Setting up transition was fast but I literally ran to get to the port-a- potty line and then had to sprint back to get my wetsuit on. I also wanted to make sure I at least got into the water for a second, so I ran to the entrance area and fought my wetsuit sleeves on, jumped in and out and had just enough time to get back to line up. I usually like a little more time than I had and felt a little like a hot mess, but maybe it helped to not fuss over things.

The weather was misty and gray, kind of cool, basically my perfect weather. My swim was calm and comfortable. I took my time and even felt like I had good form since I was out there for a bit to focus on it. In the end I was happy with my time of 39:14 since I took it easy to not tire out.

I was looking forward to T1 since they had wetsuit strippers, woohoo! and it was kind of comical when this drill-sergeant man was grabbing the remainder of my sleeve off and then shouted “SIT DOWN!” and got my legs off in a jiffy. I almost said “YES SIR!”, in summary wetsuit strippers are awesome. T1 I don’t remember too much, just got my bike gear on and off I went.

On the bike I remember I tried to push but not too much and not get caught up in the race. I took in my nutrition and watched the fast men with disc wheels whoosh by me (and Cathy too). By the second loop I was looking at my time and thought, wow! this is fast! I averaged 18.4 mph for my first loop and wondered if I should slow down or not but I didn’t feel fatigued so I kept at the same pace. My second loop was slower, 17.5 mph, but I also took a potty break where I had to wait for someone, but since I felt good so far, I wanted to incorporate the time loss into my bike rather than my run. While I had a lot of time on the bike, my mind calculated many things, like how fast maybe I could finish, considering I knew my bike time would be a little over 3 hours (in the end 3:09:57). My swim time was a mystery but I figured it couldn’t be over an hour, so this got my mind on a goal of under 6 hours, with a sub 2-hr half marathon, which was possibly achievable.

T2 was slower, but I wanted to make sure I had sun protection on and was comfortable with all my gear.

I set off running and my legs felt good. I paced myself well using my Garmin and was cruising easily between an 8:40-8:55 pace. Since I also knew my half marathon PR time, by the time I hit the 10K point, I also knew I could likely beat my PR and push under 2hrs easily. Overall the run was smooth, even when ending a little warm/humid in the day. I started to get some minor cramping on the last two mile inclines so I walked up two hills to prevent an actual cramp and then continued running. On the final turn I saw Z and a t-rex cheering on and before the final turn the feeling was incredible.

I’ve never had emotion come over me in a race and I had to break into a smile from just feeling joy. Just to finish was enough for me, to break under 6 hrs (5:52:48) was even more incredible and to set a half marathon PR (1:54:45) was icing on the cake for me. The day was almost suspiciously perfect for me, I would like to think that on Father’s Day, someone was looking out for me : )

In the end, it paid off to trust in my training, have fun and take in the entire day around me to remember such a great goal and moment.

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Race Report: Whaling City Tri & Du 2016

Whaling City Tri & Du – July 3, 2016

Sarah, Fran and Candice at Whaling City 2016

Candice’s Race Report:

I completed the Whaling City Triathlon in New Bedford on July 3rd. This was a sprint distance triathlon: .25 mile swim, 12 mile bike, and 3.1 mile run. It first started with me checking in and then getting marked. I then went over to the transition area, which was nicely organized by your race number with plenty of space for each person. I then went over to the bathrooms, which was probably the biggest downside to the race: about 6-7 portable bathrooms for the whole event.

The swim portion was done in Buzzards Bay and the water was beautiful for the race! I couldn’t ask for better water temperature. The swimming portion started where you entered two by two with a five second delay until the next pair came in. I felt strong at first with the swim, although did get a little tired at points with the waves and slight current of the water. The route was a triangle from one shore line to the other.

I then transitioned to the bike. The swim transition was a little bit of a jog to the transition area, but I managed to get my bike gear together and start riding. The bike course was a 6 mile loop that was done twice. The route itself was nice and flat, with beautiful views of the water and of New Bedford. I’m still having trouble with those turns on the bike though! Any advice from TE members would be awesome.

The bike mount and dismount were very close to the transition area, which made it easy for transition to the run portion. The running route itself was flat and probably my favorite part of the whole race. The route itself was right on the water with stunning views. If I was not completing a triathlon, I would have stopped and took some pictures! The down side to having stunning views right on the water is that there are little trees or opportunities for shade. When the temperature is already sunny and in the mid 80s and humid, I was dying for some relief when I finished the race. It was probably the most scenic triathlon I have done so far, although it was definitely the hottest as well.

The finish area was also nice, with kiosks to print out your personal times and they gave you a cool rag at the finish line. The best part when I finished was the kiddie pools filled with ice cold water to put your feet in! I’m so glad they had these as I was very hot and tired when I finished.

All in all, I thought this race was very scenic and flat. I would do this triathlon again. The only thing that I would recommend in the future is more bathrooms. Oh, and keep the kiddie pools with ice cold water.

Fran‘s Race Report:

After a 4 am wake up call, I piled my bike and gear in the car and headed to New Bedford for the Whaling City Triathlon.  It’s a sprint distance, with a 0.25 mile swim, 12 mile bike, and 3.1 mile run.  It was a great day for a race, with temperatures only getting up to around the mid 70’s by the end, and just enough breeze to cause some annoyance on the bike but cool things down for the run.  And I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the race organizers had given the three representatives from TE, Candice, Sarah, and I, consecutive race numbers, so we were next to each other in transition.

It was my first race with a wetsuit (and my second swim in one), and my first real swim in salt water.  I’m still getting used to all that extra buoyancy, sometimes it felt like my feet were barely even in the water.  Save ’em for the rest of the race, I guess.  I was pleased to look at the summary from my watch later and discover that I didn’t swim as far off course as I thought I had, but I still need to work on my sighting and bilateral breathing.

The bike portion was made up of two six mile loops, which initially caused me some consternation.  It took me a little while to figure out that I was getting passed so often during the first half because I was among the super speedy people who were on their second loop.  I managed to keep out of their way and eventually got around to passing some people of my own.  Not Sarah Poole, though.  Even with a cold Sarah is way faster than me on a bike.  Still, I managed an average 15.6 mph pace, which is a big improvement on where I was this time last year.

I managed to locate my running legs somewhere around half a mile into the 5K, only to lose track of them at about the three mile mark, but still finished fairly strong after a quick breather.  And I had my fastest average pace during a race, so call it a win.  The run course was nice.  It winds along the shore around Fort Taber Park with some great views of Buzzards Bay.

Overall, it was a good race.  It was well-organized with plenty of signs to tell everyone where to go.  There weren’t many hills, and the few that were there were pretty mild.  My only advice to anyone interested in doing this race in the future is to try and get there early if you want to get a close parking spot.  Apparently, there were fewer parking options available this year and I’m not sure if those filled up and where people had to go if they did.  I got there around 6:30 and got one of the last spots in the first of the two parking lots.

Sarah‘s Race Report:

I really enjoy the Whaling City Triathlon. Unfortunately, a nasty cold (sneezing, chest congestion, cough…all the fun stuff, really) almost sidelined me this year. Neck rule be damned, I decided to adjust my expectations and race anyway. I threw all time goals out the window and set out to race at a comfortable pace and to have fun.

The water was perfect for the swim – calm, a comfortable temperature, and not too crowded (thanks to the time trial start). This was my first race in my new sleeveless wetsuit, and I really liked having the extra range of motion in my shoulders. I stayed relaxed and steady in the swim without pushing my pace and exited the water ready to hit the bike – so far, so good!

Whaling City’s bike course is flat, fast, and closed to traffic. Most of the route features a lovely view of the shoreline. I went out strong and felt much stronger (and faster) than I had anticipated. Tempting as it was to push the pace, I knew I still had the run ahead of me. I stuck to my revised plan and maintained a steady, comfortable pace, which turned out to be a little faster than expected. Sweet!

My chest congestion finally caught up with me on the run (I was SO close!). I started out slow, had to take several coughing breaks, and just never really found my pace or my breath. So, I took it easy, walked a bit, and enjoyed the scenery – the course offers beautiful views of Fort Taber Park and the waterfront.

It wasn’t the strongest finish, but I crossed the line and enjoyed a nice ice bath for my feet. I had a lot of fun racing with my Fran and Candice (I love that Sun racks teams together in transition), enjoyed a well-organized, scenic race, and surprised myself in two of the three events. Considering how close I came to not racing at all, I consider the day to be a success. I even managed to remove all traces of my body marking before attending a wedding reception that evening!

Next up – Sharon!

2012 Race Series is Announced!

Congratulations to all new and returning members of Team Envision. The 2012 season has been very exciting already with the addition of Coach Tony, as well as increased social and educational training opportunities. We encourage all members who have yet to attend the coach workouts to do so. Also to come are more monthly social outings and events that will help you to get to know more fellow TE’ers and learn about the world of Tri’s.

2012 Race Series are  selected triathlons for all members of all abilities. We want to encourage all members to race, have fun, and build team camaraderie. The TE coordinators put a lot of time and thought into choosing these following races for ya’ll!

NE Season Opener, May 13, 2012- Max Performance event
Sprint Duathlon and Triathlon
Hopkinton State Park

Title 9 Tri: Escape the Cape, June 3, 2012- Max Performance event
Sprint Triathlon- Women only
Onset, Ma

Title 9 Tri: Massachusetts State Olympic Triathlon, July 15, 2012-Max Performance event
Olympic Triathlon- Women only
Lake Dennison, Winchendon, Ma

Cranberry Olympic Triathlon, August 26,2012 – Sun Multisport event
Olympic Distance
Ted Williams Camp, Lakeville, Ma

 Title 9, September 9,2012-Max Performance event
Sprint Tri
Hopkinton State Park, Hopkinton, MA

Relay Team Scholarship Program
2012 Scholarship program is to encourage TE relay teams. A TE relay is multiple TE women usually 2-3 people who each participate in a leg of a race. There are TE scholarships available and will be awarded at the end of the season for teams that meet the qualification standards. To see more information visit here.

Max Performance Women’s TriClub Challenge
Max Performance is a fantastic venue, of well-organized races and great post-race festivals of food, giveaways and music! This is also a great opportunity for Team Envision to continue to gain recognition and win up to $1,000! To participate in the Women’s Tri Club Challenge we need 8 members at of three Max Performance Races. Every member earns points for our team, so we really want to make a strong presence. This year we have selected 4 Max Performance Races, however we only need 3 races where there are 8 members who complete the race. We can enter only one relay team into each of the races. In 2011 we came in 1st place, but unfortunately didn’t meet the necessary requirements of having 8 members at 3 races, so did not earn a cash prize. However, we are hoping 2012 is our year!!!!

 

Volunteering Event: Title 9 Triathlon September 9, 2012
We will be looking for members, friends and family to volunteer time to help coordinate race events on this day. Last year we had a great turn out of volunteers, followed by a Team Cook Out. More details will follow….