October and time for the last triathlon of the season for Team CurbCrusher. On October 26th, I headed out to Moss Park to run in the Masters Triathlon Championship sprint triathlon. I did this race last year, so it was going to be a good chance to compare times over the past year, and its a familiar place that’s close to home so it’s a great race to end the year with.
I got to Moss Park about an hour or so before the race. Since the race was in town, I was able to pick up my packed the day before, so I had my race numbers and shirt and various goodies. I walked my bike into transition and got body marked and a transponder. This was a fairly small race, I think there were less than 150 people altogether, so it was open rack meaning that you could choose where you wanted to put your bike. I choose a spot about two racks in from the swim entrance and up against the outside. I laid out everything, shirt, shoes, race number and set up my bucket to sit on. I think I ended up having the whole rack to myself.
Swim – 14:28
The temperature was in the upper sixties, with a slight breeze. This made it fairly cold to stand around the beach waiting for the swim start. I was in the second wave, so that meant I got to stand around for an extra five minutes. The water temperature was about 78, so when it came time to get in the water, it was warmer. I was actually toward the front of my wave as it started, as I’d gotten in the water deep enough to cover my shoulders. The swim was great. As with most swims in Lake Mary Jane though, you have no idea where people are as you can’t see your hand in front of your face in this water. I’m sure a bunch of people passed me in the water, but I got out of the water feeling good.
T1 – 5:47
T1 in a race at Moss Park has a bit of a run to it. You have to go from the lake, across the swimming beach and then into the park. Once you leave the beach, you are running either on pavement, or ground covered with pine needles, pine cones and a number of hidden roots and cypress knees. Needless to say, this can be a painful run. At the transition area, it time to sit down and get shoes and socks on, along with a bike jersey and a helmet. Grab the bike and head out on the road.
Bike – 41:02
The bike course had changed since last year, but is still basically the same. Leave Moss Park, make a right on Lake Mary Jane Road and head around the lake until it’s time to turn around. Back a couple of months ago, I did the aqua bike race and was able to average 18 mph on this course, so I was hoping for a repeat. There was a bit of an easterly breeze this morning so part of the outgoing leg was into the wind and I could tell that I wasn’t getting the 18mph that I wanted. I was hoping to make it up on the inbound leg, but from the time you can tell I didn’t quite manage that.
T2 – 1:21
T2 is simple, dump the bike, switch from the bike jersey to the t-shirt and grap my cap. It still seems to take me a couple of minutes, but hey, the race is almost over.
Run – 31:34
I was disappointed in the run. I wanted to do it in under 30 minutes, and you can see I failed. I did make a pit stop back in the campground, which took about two minutes. So if I could ever get through a triathlon run without needing to urinate, I’d probably break three minutes. I felt good for most of the run, and only walked when making the pit stop. This is perhaps the only thing about exercise that I don’t understand. I generally drink a full bottle of Gatorade on the bike and at every water stop on the run. I sweat at a rate that could keep the Nile flowing for a month. Then I need to make a pit stop. If I don’t, it gets real uncomfortable to run. I’ve tried skipping the water on the run, with the result of being both thirsty and needing to take a pit stop.
Overall – 1:34:13
Well, I was more than four minutes faster than last year. That’s a good thing. I was really hoping that I’d run enough to get my run time under half and hour. So in some ways this was a disappointing way to end the triathlon season. It will be April or May of next year before I run another triathlon, but I plan on running a bit this winter. My first order of business is to complete the OUC Half-Marathon the first weekend in December.