Patty does his first triathlon

Surfing, swimming, fishing, running, hiking and croquet
User avatar
pattywannamack
Posts: 1570
Joined: Sun Aug 03, 2008 6:31 pm

Patty does his first triathlon

Postby pattywannamack » Sun Aug 28, 2011 8:49 pm

Today I competed in my first triathlon up in Santa Barbara. It was a sprint distance triathlon with a 500 yard swim, 6 mile bike ride, and a 2 mile run. The distance itself is a cupcake in the triathlon world, but I figured it would be the best place for me to start as a beginner triathlete. I also found out that the sprint distance actually makes for a rather intense race.

I was with the first wave of athletes to enter the water and was matched up against pro's, elite amateurs, and a bunch of collegiate level athletes who had way more experience than I did. I was actually rather strong at the swimming portion of the race. I came out towards the front of the pack which was pretty cool, but also a double edged sword since it meant that I would have to keep up with the pros. Since I am new at triathlons I lost a ton of time in the transitions and did some stupid things like put on my socks (which apparently is a big no no in the triathlon world) and then mount my bike in a relatively slow fashion.

I've been training quite hard on the bike, often doing 50+ mile rides on the weekends but it was a surprisingly difficult bike course for it being only 6 miles long. The course had a ton of turns, some unexpected hills, and a few rough roads. I always felt like I was in the wrong gear when riding, or that I always had to slow down to make a turn so it was kind of hard for me to get into my rhythm. I hit one patch of road that was just really, really rough. My bike was rattling like crazy and I could have sworn that I broke a spoke when riding through it. Fortunately, my bike and I made it out okay and I went into the second transition.

I wasted a ton of time again by not dismounting my bike properly and not changing quick enough, and then I was off to the run. Of the three disciplines the run is definitely my weakest and it definitely showed today. While I kept a fairly solid pace, I was pretty burnt by trying to keep up with people on the bike ride. I got passed quite a few times on the run, but I eventually made it to the finish line with a time of 44 minutes and 50 seconds. I placed third in my age group so I was actually quite pleased with the outcome, especially considering that it was my first triathlon.

All in all, I can't recommend the Santa Barbara Triathlon highly enough for anyone looking for a beginner triathlon. The course is laid out very well, the volunteers are helpful, friendly, and just overall nice to interact with. The race itself has a great atmosphere, and is very convenient to attend if you stay in some of the hotels located across the street on Cabrillo street. This little trip was very enjoyable and a great way to end the summer. I probably would not have done it had I not competed in a few swim meets up in Santa Barbara during my Mater Dei years. At those meets I fell in love with the the area which is just absolutely gorgeous, and has a quaint atmosphere that is very relaxing.

I am doing the Pacific Coast Triathlon down in Crystal Cove on September 11th. That race is a 800 yard swim, 12 mile bike ride, and a 5K run. I will probably get destroyed on that race because the field will be much more competitive, but I am looking forward to it because it has been a race that I always wanted to compete in since I started looking into triathlons. I have a couple of more weeks of training (focusing mostly on the run and my transitions) and I will probably be back with another race report soon.


There is nothing uglier in this world than a parent riding on the success of their child.

User avatar
Notorious
Posts: 11908
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2008 10:56 am

Re: Patty does his first triathlon

Postby Notorious » Sun Aug 28, 2011 9:13 pm

Congrats on completing your first one. I've wanted to get into triathalons for a while now (I have relatives who did the first Ironman Triathalon in Kona). My cardio shape is decent but I'm awful at swimming. Seriously I look like I had my legs and hands duct taped together and was thrown into water.


How were your training days setup? Did you follow any specific diet plan (both training and prerace would be nice to know)? Is your goal to eventually do ironman levels? Keep me posted, I'm quite interested in it.
Never Underestimate The Fart Of A Monarch

User avatar
SOCTE
Posts: 4033
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2008 12:32 pm

Re: Patty does his first triathlon

Postby SOCTE » Sun Aug 28, 2011 9:15 pm

Nice job, patty. Third place in your age group is not too shabby, considering it was your first triathlon competition. I'm certain you learned from this gruelling and enjoyable experience.
Image

User avatar
Notorious
Posts: 11908
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2008 10:56 am

Re: Patty does his first triathlon

Postby Notorious » Sun Aug 28, 2011 9:18 pm

Also aware me if you only did cardio training or did weights + cardio.
Never Underestimate The Fart Of A Monarch

User avatar
pattywannamack
Posts: 1570
Joined: Sun Aug 03, 2008 6:31 pm

Re: Patty does his first triathlon

Postby pattywannamack » Sun Aug 28, 2011 10:12 pm

Notorious wrote:Congrats on completing your first one. I've wanted to get into triathalons for a while now (I have relatives who did the first Ironman Triathalon in Kona). My cardio shape is decent but I'm awful at swimming. Seriously I look like I had my legs and hands duct taped together and was thrown into water.


How were your training days setup? Did you follow any specific diet plan (both training and prerace would be nice to know)? Is your goal to eventually do ironman levels? Keep me posted, I'm quite interested in it.


Swimming is a little hard to master for newcomers. I am honestly at a huge advantage because I have 12+ years of competitive swimming experience behind me but it is doable for a newcomer. The biggest thing that you have to realize is that swimming is more about technique than anything. If you are a new swimmer, you can't expect just swim more yards each day and get faster, you have to constantly refine and perfect your technique by doing drills and other kinds of stroke work. My suggestion for anyone looking to swim is to join a local masters program which will introduce new swimmers to a structured swimming environment, where technique and coaching will hopefully be quite prevalent. Another thing to keep in mind is that the swim is the smallest portion of the triathlon anyways so a lot of triathletes can get away without being strong swimmers if they are decent cyclists and runners. I basically smoked a ton of people coming out of the water, but people passed me later on in the race because they were much better cyclists and runners than I was.

My training days were set up kind of like this.
Mondays: Intensity day.
7am: 2,500 yards of swimming with relatively intense intervals.
9am: 2.6 mile run trying to run under 20 minutes (the only reason why I did a 2.6 mile run is because I have a loop in my neighborhood that is that distance any distance that you can do and hold at a high intensity suffices)
Evening: 1 hour- 90 minute bike ride for about 20 miles.

Tuesday: Distance day
7am: 3,500 yards of swimming. Usually with 500 yard repeats and 500 yard pyramid sets.
9am: 5k run
Evening: 1 hour- 2hour bike ride for about 20-25 miles.

Wednesday: Rest day
I usually didn't exercise this day but if I did it would be a light 1 hour bike ride in an easy gear.

Thursday: Threshold day.
7am: 2,500 yards of swimming doing a lactate threshold set that I did in high school.
9am: 2-4 mile run doing HIIT (30 seconds of sprinting, 30 seconds of recovery or some variation of that)
Evening: 90 minute bike ride usually in a higher gear than what I would normally use.

Friday: Cross train/technique/ active recovery day
7am: 3,000 yards of swimming. Doing active recovery sets (swimming a 100 yard freestyle and sprinting one 25, then resting the next 25), a few stroke technique drills, and 25 yard sprints doing 10 pushups on one side and then 30 second core bridges on the other side.
9am: 2.6 mile run at any pace. Afterwards I would do about 20 minutes of jump roping with core exercises spliced in with intervals.
Evening: Rest, or an easy 1 hour recovery ride.

Saturday: Endurance day.
3 hour/ 50 mile bike ride.

Sunday:
Recovery.

You don't necessarily have to do all three sports within the same day but I chose to because I had the time in the last few weeks of summer. What I think is important is that you split up your intensities throughout the week. On somedays you need to work on your sprinting power, other days you need to work on your endurance and it's very important to get that variety in there. Bear in mind, these distances were more so tailored for the Santa Barbara Triathlon distances. I will probably be increasing these workout distances by 10-20% for my upcoming triathlon.

My diet wasn't particularly special, but I've been eating pretty healthy since I started swimming in high school. My mainstay snacks are, bananas, cliff bars, almonds, whole grain toast, pb and j, carrots, and cereal. At meals I always try to eat either a protein, or some kind of meal with a lot of vegetables. Your body needs the nutrients found in vegetables in order to recover and rebuild properly, and the same thing goes for proteins. I usually drink only water and milk. Sometimes I will throw in a gatorade or a vitamin water in order to keep my sanity.

I didn't lift weights during the summer (partly because I broke my wrist) but I did lift them throughout the school year. As school picks up, I will probably cut swimming from my routine and transition back to weight lifting. Weightlifting gives great returns for the amount of time that you have to invest and after all of this endurance stuff, I am getting really lean anyways. Plus weight lifting will help strengthen the muscles which hopefully will prevent overuse injuries. Next summer I will probably drop weightlifting and transition back into swimming.

I plan on slowly working my way up the distances. Next year I hope to do an Olympic distance race (1.5K swim 40K bike ride 10K run) and after that maybe a half ironman (1.5 mile swim, 56 mile bike, 13.1 mile run). I would love to do an ironman eventually but I am honestly really afraid of injuring myself. My biggest limiting factor is the run. Whenever I try to do distance running I injure myself so I have to learn how to do 10K's half marathons, and then full marathons first before I even think about an ironman. On top of that, I have never done a bike ride past 60 miles and after bike rides at those distances, I am totally shot. I couldn't imagine doing 112 miles, and then running a full marathon after that. With that being said though, my endurance will come with age and experience so who knows how I will be in a couple of years.

I hope this helps, please let me know if you have any other questions.
There is nothing uglier in this world than a parent riding on the success of their child.

afan95
Posts: 1738
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2008 6:43 pm

Re: Patty does his first triathlon

Postby afan95 » Mon Aug 29, 2011 4:31 am

Congrats...all that and college too!!
It's my Board and I will censor you when I feel like it JQP

User avatar
Parrotpaul
Posts: 33550
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2006 2:14 pm

Re: Patty does his first triathlon

Postby Parrotpaul » Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:08 am

Good job, Patty... keep training...we want an Occonnect triathlon champ to brag about. :cheers:
"I think I may say that of all the men we meet with, nine parts of ten are what they are, good or evil, useful or not, by their education." John Locke

User avatar
Notorious
Posts: 11908
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2008 10:56 am

Re: Patty does his first triathlon

Postby Notorious » Mon Aug 29, 2011 12:04 pm

Thanks for the info Patty, I've ran a marathon before but triathalons do intrigue. I've stayed away mostly because time to train and being awful at swimming.
Never Underestimate The Fart Of A Monarch

Return to “Outdoors and Recreational”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest