Monday, July 20, 2009

2009 Show-Me State Games Duathlon

I registered for this duathlon about 2 weeks ago to make myself get back on the bike after not riding in over a year. I managed to get 3 rides before the race for a total of 51 miles. This was my third Show-Me Games duathlon and very little bike training is pretty typical for me.

The duathlon occurs concurrently with the triathlon with the duathlon starting with the first wave of swimmers. I arrived a little over an hour early to check in and didn’t seem to be many people, but all the racks filled up before the start. This duathlon is different than most in that it is only a bike and a run, not run/bike/run. The bike course is pretty challenging with steep hills, rolling hills, some nice flat in the middle for a few miles, and then more hills. The bike course is 20.5 miles and the run is a flat 5K.

Shortly after 8 am we were told to go line up our bikes. It seemed like more people doing the duathlon than I remember in the past. I positioned my bike behind in the mid pack. The first hill was not as bad as I remembered it but it was my second slowest mile. There was bit of passing back and forth until I found myself in a comfortable position. Uwe passed me on the bike, but I passed him on Forum since he had to stop to put his chain on. Later on, he catches up and easily passes me.

I managed to drink with my new bottle positioned between my aero bars and had it and my Shot Blocks finished at 16 miles. I maintained my position until near the end when I passed a guy with about 3 miles to go but I was also passed by someone else in the last couple miles. With all of the hills and scenery, this is not a dull course. I managed to reach a top speed of 38 mph which I am sure is slow compared to some.

The last half mile or so is downhill and then flat so the legs get a chance to recover just before the run. I made it to transition and I think I was out of there in less than a minute and just took off running as hard as I can to try to get the legs feeling normal as quickly as possible. Pace felt slower than my GPS said I was running. I was catching up to and passing runners. First mile split was 6:50 which was a bit slower than I hoped so I tried to pick up the pace. It was easy to pick up, but had to force myself. My breathing felt strange for this run I guess since I felt like I was breathing harder than normal. Second mile split was 6:24, and 3rd mile 6:13. Unofficial result that I had for my run was 19:34 which was a minute faster than a couple years ago. Bike estimate was 1:06:26 (18.5 mph), a few seconds slower than a couple years ago. Overall time was 1:27:00, a 29 second course PR thanks to my running improvement. I placed 1st in the 40 – 44 age group, passing the 2nd and 3rd guys during the run. I have no idea how I placed overall, but would guess at least in the top 25%.

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