Door County Sprint

Emily made a decision last year that she wanted to race the Door County Triathlon Half Ironman course.  When I woke up New Year’s Day, (she registered in the middle of the night) and we were talking about the trip up to Door County, I decided to register for the Sprint distance race.  This would give us something to do on Saturday morning of the weekend.  I’ll leave the weekend round up to Emily, but I wanted to talk about my race specifically.

I honestly didn’t have a lot of expectations for this race when I registered for it.  I really thought I would get out, have some fun, and then help Emily get ready for her race the next day.  I was a touch nervous the morning of the race and even had to go back to the hotel after we left to pick up my Garmin (if I don’t have it, it doesn’t count).

Water

The water was calm Saturday morning.  There were a bunch of people warming up in the water, but I decided to hang out and listen to music.  This is the first time I have done this and it helped out a lot.  I turned the volume way down so that I could hear what was going on around me, but the music helped to keep me settled.  About race time, Emily and I ran into a guy wearing a Chattnooga shirt from last year and we talked to him and his family for a bit.  He gave us some insight into the Chattanooga race.  This was his daughter’s first triathlon, and they were there to support her Saturday, the following day he was going to be doing the half distance race.

Waves were sent into the water, but mine was about 30 minutes after the race start.  When it got close to time, I pulled on my wetsuit, my swim camp, pulled my goggles on to my head, and made my way to the beach.  Lots of nervous folks out there gave me a bit more confidence.  I have done this before, there isn’t anything to worry about.

The swim was not too bad.  There was a bit of a current that pushed me around a little, and that caused me to have to redirect myself a few times.  The water was very clear, so I was easily able to see the lines that the race volunteers had painted the night before, so getting back on track wasn’t tough.  We had recently listened to the DC Rainmaker podcast where he discussed how you can lose your watch if you have the quick disconnect on it.  So I had that worry going through my head about every 20 seconds.  Ultimately, I didn’t lose my watch.

Getting out of the water, I made my way to the wetsuit strippers.  They tore my wetsuit off quick (after deciding who was going to do it), but they took something else with them, which I didn’t notice for a few minutes.

Transition went pretty flawless.  Helmet on.  Glasses on.  Run to the bike out.  I made it to the mount line, but there wasn’t a beep when I crossed?!?!?!?  I looked down and noticed that I didn’t have my timing chip on.  So, it was back to my rack spot to see if it was there.  After a little digging I was able to find it tangled up in my wetsuit. I put it back on and was off again.  Once at the mount line, and jumped up and spun off.  About a minute later I slipped into my shoes and got ready for the next 18 miles.

Em and I rode the bike course a few weeks ago, and I knew what to expect for the most part.  We had also discussed what we thought I could hold for power over the course.  Em thought I could hold 160 watts or so for the 18 miles, and I guessed 180.  I averaged 185 watts and almost 21 miles per hour, finishing the bike in about 52 minutes.  That’s pretty quick for me, and honestly, a new expectation for myself.

It’s a great bike course.  For a little while you are in the woods, then you get a view of the bay before getting to the beginning of the city and turning around.  One thing I really remember from the ride was a great banked turn.  I remember it because I felt like I was flying, which I guess I was, since Garmin shows me at almost 25 MPH.

Bike Fast

The transition to run was a little less stressful, having not lost my timing chip this time.  But I did bring newer shoes that didn’t have speed laces on them, so I did actually have to tie my shoes (poor planning on my part).

The run is a simple out and back.  I ran past the parking lot, then a corn field, then the corn field again, then the parking lot again, then finish line.  And it felt that quick.  At just over a 9 minute pace, I killed any effort I have ever put forward.

I kept thinking I was going to hit the wall at some point, but I just kept going.  At one point I wanted to walk, but remembered that I have been talking to Emily about pace management instead of walking, so I just managed my pace back a little for a few minutes, then off I went again.

Run Door County Nick

Finish time 1:35:03 (exactly one second behind the guy who placed 15th).  17 of 36 in my age group and 222 of about 1000 total athletes for the sprint.  This is now my effort to beat for sure.  I can’t really match this up against the Elkhart sprint since the bike distances are different, but I can say my effort was better.  I am definitely interested in doing this race again.

Door County Tri really puts on a great race.  Everything about this was great (including volunteering the next day).  The food was good.  Beer was vast and they had music or a live band all day.  It makes me wish that Ironman would put the same effort forward for their races, but I realize they host a lot more athletes and are a bit more spread out.

2017 Elkhart Lake Race Report

Elkhart Lake is where triathlon began for us last year.  Nick and I returned this year because it is a great race – the course is nice, and we did not have travel too far from home.

I had a couple of goals for the race:  Don’t freak out on the swim and beat last year’s time.  I accomplished both!

The Swim
With my last two races resulting in a DNF due to the swim, I was a little nervous getting in the open water again.  I hadn’t swam outside of the pool since Austin 70.3 in November.

Race day, I was unusually relaxed.  Nick and I were in the last swim wave, so we hung out all morning.  I was a little nervous because I didn’t want to be the last sprint athlete our of the water.   I knew I could finish the swim, even if I had to doggie paddle my way through it.

We lined up and waited for our wave to start.  The gun went off and we were chatting with people in our age group.  We saw the first of the athletes complete the swim, and not too much longer it was our turn.

Elkhart does a rolling swim start, so you line up by wave, give your bib number and are off.  The next athlete is about three seconds behind you. It was my turn to enter the water.  I ran into the water.  As I was about to dive, out of the corner of my eye, I saw Nick pass me.  (So much for beating him on the swim).

The water was cold.  I knew I had to keep my breathing under control, and remain calm.  Halfway to the first turn buoy I recognized where I had my little panic attack last year.  I kept swimming.  I was in a rhythm, breathing every other stroke (every third stroke was just too much).  Although, I was sighting very often, I didn’t stop swimming.

Before long I was at the first turn buoy.  Last year, I held on to a kayak hear to catch my breath.  I kept going, no need for a kayak this year.  My head was out of the water a little more than I wanted, but that’s what was keeping me comfortable, so that’s what I continued to do.  I was sighting nearly every stroke.

I got to the second turn buoy in no time.  I saw a girl struggling a little on the swim.  I asked if she was okay, and she said yes, so I kept going.  I was almost there.  I got to the point where I could touch and swam some more.  The water was getting cloudy/sandy, so I stood up.  As I ran the rest of the way, I saw Nick exiting the water.  I wasn’t too far behind him.

Swim Time – 9:05.1 (2:16/100m)

T1
The transition this year was a little longer in that you had to run along the back of the transition areas to enter transition from the swim.  I ran/walked to transition.   Once at my bike, I hung my wetsuit, put on socks, shoes, sunglasses, helmet, grabbed my bike and was out.

T1 Time – 3:59.9

The Bike
The bike course changed slightly the day before the race due to road construction.  Instead of three left turns to turn around, you made a left turn then right turn, and then a u-turn and back down.  No big deal.  It was essentially the same course.

When setting up my bike that morning, I poured my Tailwind in my aerobottle without mixing it.  I figured the jostling of the bike would stir it enough as I rode.  Boy was I wrong.  I drank all of the powder in the first few sips, and was left with slightly flavored water the remainder of the ride.

2016ElkhartLakeEmilyBikeI started the bike off strong.  My heart was beating fast.  The good thing about starting in the last swim wave is that there are a ton of people before you to pass on the bike.

About mile 2 I got stuck behind a Tahoe who was stuck behind two athletes who were much slower than my pace.  Without any way to pass, I had to stay behind the vehicle, until the course turned off and I was able to make my pass.

Next up were the two hairpin turns.  I remember these scaring me last year, but I was ready for them.  I slowed down, made the turn, then picked up speed again.  I was passing people on hills, something I couldn’t seem to do in my first race.

I rode by the place where I stopped last year to help out the guy with the flat tire. No one was on the side of the road this year, thank goodness.

I was trying to keep steady uphills and let the downhills work for me.   I was on the lookout for Nick, knowing he was ahead of me.  About mile 6, I crossed Nick on the bike.  He had already made it to the turnaround and was headed to transition.

I made it to the turnaround, careful not to fall, and continued on my way.  I was still passing people, and only had a few people pass me the whole ride.  Before long, I was nearing transition.

Bike Time – 47:15.2 (15.7 mph)

T2
I dismounted my bike and began running in to T2.  I very quickly regretted not leaving my shoes on the bike and running barefoot.  But the pathway leading to transition was single file, so I had to run in my bike shoes.

I racked my bike, changed shoes, changed hats, put on my bib, and was out.

T2 Time – 2:54.0

The Run
I still hadn’t calmed myself down.  My heart was still pounding.  I knew this was going to be a difficult run.  My pacing was off, I was running too fast.  Before the 1 mile mark, I had to take a walk break.  I needed to steady myself, run leisurely; but that wasn’t happening.  When I was running, it was fast.  This 5k was going to be bad.

Nick was ahead of me, but I wasn’t sure by how much.  When I passed where the course loops back on itself and didn’t see Nick, I knew he was less than 20 minutes ahead of me.  I continued my run/walk regimen, a little disappointed in myself for not being able to pace properly.

I made it to the water station and knew the big hill was up next.  I made it up the hill, but no without walking.  I wasn’t passing anyone, and really no one was passing me either.  There were people out on the course, but I felt like I was running it alone.  Finally, I was at the downhill, and let me legs just keep moving.  I told myself I had to run it in, and I did.

Run Time – 33:12.9 (10:42 min/mile)

2016ElkhartLakeFinish

Total Race Time – 1:36:27.3

This year versus last year:
I was definitely more prepared for the race this year, both mentally and physically.  A few days before the race I sent my coach my race predictions.    I thought it might be fun to compare my times.  Below are my 2015 Results, 2016 Predictions, and 2016 Results.

2015 Results 2016 Prediction 2016 Results
400m Swim 12:26.3 10:00.0 9:05.1
T1 4:30.5 3:00.0 3:59.9
20k Bike 52:47.6 46:00.0 47:15.2
T2 3:16.5 3:00.0 2:54.0
5k Run 34:35.8 32:00.0 33:12.0
Total 1:47:36.7 1:34:00.0 1:36:27.3

A total of 11 minutes 9.4 seconds improvement from last year!

2016 ElkhartLakeFlagEmily

First Triathlon, Elkhart Lake Sprint Race Report

On Saturday, June 13th, I completed my first triathlon!

Pre-Race Fun
Friday night Nick and I went to pick up our race packets from the Osthoff Lake Resort.  After getting our packets and wandering around the expo, we walked around the property to scout out the swim and transition areas.  We then went back to the hotel for a race briefing presented by the race director.  We were now armed with knowledge of the race and headed home for a good night’s sleep.

The alarm sounded and I practically jumped out of bed.  I was nervous.  I checked and double-checked the contents of my race bag.  I grabbed a bite to eat and drank a cup of coffee.  I kept telling myself, this is just another race, there’s nothing to be worried about.

We packed the truck and were off to the race.  Nick was chatty on the ride there.  I just wanted to think, not participating much in the conversation.  We arrived at the race venue, unloaded the truck and made our way to transition.

Elkhart Lake Triathlon TransitionWhen we entered transition, my number was on the outer edge of the rack.  Nick spotted his number and we parted for the time being.  I happily racked my bike at the end of the row.  I wouldn’t have to search for my bike on the rack, one less thing to worry about.  I began emptying the contents of my race bag and setting up my transition area.  I worked quietly and methodically.

Nick returned to my area, his transition setup complete.  He began having conversations with people around us.  It was then I realized we were dealing with the race anxiety in two completely different ways.  Nick was energetic and chatting with everyone.  I was nearly silent, only speaking when necessary, and focusing on calming my breaths.

I finally finished my transition setup.  Double and triple-checking everything before walking out of the transition area.  We walked down to the swim area and Nick got in the water and swam a little.  I just stood in the water about knee-high, and watched people.  I was nervous.

The Swim
An announcement was made for the race participants to line up.  We were sorted by age group, but would begin the swim individually, with 3 seconds between each swimmer.  Luckily, our age groups lined up next to one another, so Nick and I were able to hang out for awhile.  I kept waiting for Nick’s group to leave, knowing I had a few minutes to compose myself once he started.  Then I heard, “It’s your turn.  Your wave is starting.”  I looked at Nick, unable to comprehend what he was saying.  Why was I starting before him?  My heart raced.  I had Nick zip up my wetsuit and I was off.

My wave approached the swim start in a single-file line.  I could see the start and thought I had plenty of time, knowing there was a 3 second delay between each person.  But the line moved quickly, a little too quickly.  Next thing I knew, it was my turn.  I stepped up, the volunteer read off my race number, then said, “Go!”

Elkhart Lake Sprint SwimI ran down the mat and into the water.  Then I dove and began swimming.  My strokes were fast, my breaths were fast, and there were waves.  I was kicking fiercely.  I kept telling myself to calm down, this was just another swim.  I was gasping for air with each breath.  This wasn’t like swimming in the pool.  I couldn’t get a rhythm going.  This wasn’t going to last.

Approximately 100 meters into the swim, I panicked.  I couldn’t do this.  I couldn’t find my rhythm and I felt like I was never going to finish.  I began treading water, hoping to calm myself down.  A nearby life boat asked if I was okay.  I told him I was fine, I just needed to take a break.  I felt like such a failure.  400 meters was nothing.  I had completed over 1200 in my practice swims.  What was my problem?

I had a very serious conversation with myself.  I contemplated turning back.  The only problem was, I was 100 meters away from shore, and I’d have to get back there somehow.  And what was the point in giving up on the first discipline?  If I stopped now, I would get a DNF, and wouldn’t even get the opportunity to get on my bike or run.  My race would be over.  I couldn’t give up.  I wouldn’t give up.  So I swam to the first buoy.

As soon as I rounded the corner, I stopped at the helpful life boat.  I hung on for a few seconds, trying to catch my breath.  I unzipped my wetsuit and there was instant relief.  I felt like the dang thing was choking me.  Only problem was, once you are in the midst of an anxiety attack, you can’t just turn it off and make it go away.  I took another deep breath, counted to three, and pushed off. Elkhart Lake Swim

I swam the rest of the way with my head above water, some kind of combination of freestyle and dog paddling.  I rounded the second buoy.  I could see people ahead of me standing in the water.  I tried to touch, no such luck.  I swam further until I could see the bottom.  I was done, just had to make it up the beach.  As soon as I was out of the water, I began wrestling off my wetsuit.  The look on my face says it all.

Swim Time – 12:26.3 (2:17/100m)

T1
I walked to my bike.  I was finished with my swim and now had to focus on my ride.  I sat at my transition area and calmly put on my sunglasses, helmet.  I poured water on my feet to wash off the sand and dirt.  I was still a bit dazed.  I looked around and spotted Nick at his area, I knew he wouldn’t be too far behind me.  I put on my bike shoes, un-racked my bike, and made my way out of transition.

T1 Time – 4:30.5

The Bike
I quickly mounted my bike and was off.  My thoughts were now on the bike.  I pedaled.  A few turns and my legs were feeling great.  I passed the forewarned s-curve with ease.  I was feeling good.  I was going to have a good ride!

3 miles in and I spotted a biker on the side of the road.  He looked totally defeated as he watched other athletes ahead pass him by without even glancing his way.  As I neared him, I asked, “Do you need any help?”  Please say no.  Please say no.  He quickly replied, “Yes, I actually do.”  So I stopped my bike and ran back toward him.  He asked for a tire lever.  I reached in my bag and handed it to him, that’s when Nick passed by.  He asked if everything was okay, and I just nodded in response.  I asked if the other rider if he needed anything else.  He wanted to know if I had an extra CO2 cartridge.  I did, so I handed it to him.  I was trying to leave him to it, it felt like I had been standing there for an eternity, but he said he was almost finished.  I know nothing about changing a tire, I just carry the tools to be able to do so if I ever need.  He filled his front tire and handed me back my tire levers and CO2 valve.

I returned to my bike and continued the ride.  I knew my bike time would suffer, but I had helped a fellow cyclist in need.  I was proud that I was able to pay if forward and can only hope if I’m in a similar situation, someone would stop to help me.

Elkhart Lake Triathlon BikeThe ride felt good for the most part.  Some of the hills were a bit trying, leaving my legs burning.  I decided I need to get better at climbing hills on the bike.  (I’m not exactly sure how to do that other than to practice climbing hills.  And who wants to submit themselves to that kind of torture?)

It felt like after every downhill was immediately greeted with a 90 degree turn.  The volunteers were great, warning the cyclists of such upcoming turns.  It was just impossible to use the hills in my favor by taking advantage of the speed I gained on the downhill to boost me on the next uphill.  Regardless, I made it through the course.

Bike Time – 52:47.6 (14.1 mph)

T2
I dismounted the bike and ran to my transition area.  My head was in the zone.  I racked my bike and took off my helmet.  I sat down and changed into my running shoes, put on my running belt, grabbed my visor and ran out of transition.

T2 Time – 3:16.5

The Run
We had been warned by the race director about a pretty steep hill on the race route, so I was anticipating a pretty rough run.  The course was such that you run straight out of transition then turn right.  After the turn, I could see a hill ahead.  My legs were still numb from the bike.  As soon as I hit the hill, I found my legs.  I powered through it and was quite impressed that I didn’t have any issues with it.  Then I realized this wasn’t the dreaded hill.  About mile 2, the course turns left just before a water station.  I grabbed a sip of water and could see another hill ahead.  This was obviously not the notorious hill either.  Elkhart Lake Triathlon Run

The course turns left again, and there she was, in all her glory, the dreaded hill.  I tried to run the entire way, but had to take a short walk break.  Once I reached the top, it was all downhill from there, quite literally.

I wasn’t paying close attention to my watch, but knew I was having a good run.  My legs were feeling fantastic, my breathing was great and I felt like I could run forever.  I made the last turn, about a tenth of a mile to the finish line, I could hear the crowd ahead.  I was almost there.  I crossed the finish line strong and happy to have completed my first triathlon!

Run Time – 34:35.8 (11:09 min/mile)

Finish Time – 01:47:36.7

Elkhart Triathlon Sprint

 

Elkhart Lake Race Report

On Saturday, Emily and I finished our first triathlon.  The Elkhart Lake Sprint distance race was a great introduction to the sport.

Friday night, we needed to head out for packet pick up.  Luckily the race venue is only about 20 minutes from our house.  We were promised an expo, and they had a few vendors there, including Smartmount.  Smartmount has a really cool product that you can use to attach a race number to your bike rather than using adhesive.  The number that the race gave us to use with the mount is great too.

This nifty little device holds your bib number on your bike.

This nifty little device holds your bib number on your bike.

Other than Smartmount, not a lot to say about the Expo.

We spent some time walking around the resort looking for transition, swim start, bike start, etc.  The map we had was a bit confusing, but a friend at work had told me about how it is set up and I think we got the majority of it figured out Friday night.  This is when we decided to get lost walking around Elkhart Lake (population 961).  We weren’t necessarily lost, but we couldn’t get to where we wanted to be from where we were.  And where we wanted to be was at the briefing from the race director.

It took a few minutes, but we did find our way around back to the hotel and made it to the briefing with time to spare.  We actually caught the end of a nutrition talk.

Race morning, at 4:10, my alarm sounded.  I wanted to be able to get up and have some coffee before we left at 5:30 to rack bikes.  This was a perfect plan, but for some reason, I forgot to eat breakfast.  It was much later in the day before I figured that out.  Back to our morning, we started getting the car packed up, we each finished our morning routines.  But we ran into a problem.  We hadn’t tried to use the Yakima bike transporter with the new tri bikes, and wouldn’t you know that is what created our issue.  My bike barely fit, and Emily’s bike wouldn’t go on if I had a hammer to force it on.  We quickly reacted, took the bike carrier off the truck and put the bikes in the back of the truck.

We were glad that to have a vehicle large enough to fit both bikes.  We were off to Elkhart Lake.

We arrived at 5:45 and made our way towards transition.  When we rolled up on transition, there was a very excited group of people ready with permanent markers ready to write relevant information on each athlete’s body.  It was great that they were so happy and cheery, it makes for a more fun morning.  With age marked on our right legs and bib numbers marked on our left legs, both arms and apparently both hands (in case it couldn’t bee seen elsewhere?) we made our way into transition.

Bikes get racked.  Then towels come out, helmets, shoes (bike and run), wetsuit, goggles, socks, water bottles . . . transitions bags seem like magic.  I kept pulling more and more out and it never seemed to be empty!  We had our transition set up within about 10 minutes of getting into the transition area.  Then it was time to wait.  Each of us dealt with the wait slightly differently.  Emily stood still and re-checked everything.  I walked around.  With about 20 minutes to go until the first start time, we both put on wet suits.  I took a quick swim in the lake, hoping that it would make me more confident.  I don’t know if it had that effect.

With 5 minutes left, we lined up.  Luckily we were pretty close to each other, with Emily’s group starting about 5 minutes before mine.  She left when her group was called and I kept waiting.  Then my group was called.  The race organizers didn’t do a wave start, they allowed 3 seconds between swimmers heading into the water.  As I approached the start line, this process seemed to take forever.  I just kept waiting, talking to people and taking another step forward every 3 seconds.  So it went for a seeming eternity, that is until it was my turn . . .

SWIM

3, 2, 1 GO!

And I went.  The water is pretty shallow so I kept running as long as I could, diving in when the water was at my waist.  I passed several people on the first 100 meters of the swim and felt really confident.  But as I rounded the first buoy, I got winded.  I was gasping for air when my face was out of the water and when my face was in the water I was almost trying to breath.  Around 200 meters, I kept my face out of the water for a while and tried to relax my breathing.  It didn’t work.  With 75 meters to go before I could run out, I put my head down and started swimming normally.  Finally, I stood up and started running towards transition.  I dropped the top of my wetsuit, ran up a hill and around the corner to my bike.

Swim Time – 9:20 (2:20/100 meters)

Coming Out of the Water

T1

In transition, I moved pretty quickly.  Helmet on, shoes on, jacket on (it was pretty cool out).  I ran out of transition.  Just over 1/10 of a mile run and I was finally on my bike (sort of).

T1 Time – 4:14

Bike

I jumped on the bike and pressed my feet down to get in the pedals.  NOTHING!  I tried again.  NOTHING!  I scraped the ball of my foot on the ground and then tried again.  NOTHING!  I was in trouble, my shoes wouldn’t clip into my pedals.  This was it for me.  I stopped, got off the bike and pulled my feet up, I had left the cleat covers on my shoes.  I pulled them off as quick and I could, shoved them down the back of my shorts and got going.

The course starts off a bit uphill, nothing terrible, but I was certainly slower than I had anticipated at the start.  Miles slipped by and I started coming into the turns that I knew were coming.  Gracious volunteers warned us on sharp turns.

Elkhart Lake Tri Bike

At this point, I saw Emily on the side of the road with another rider.  From a distance I tried to figure out if something had gone wrong for her, or if she had pulled off to help someone.  As I got closer, I saw that she had stopped to help him, I asked if all was ok as I went by, but I can’t say I heard a response.

I hit the turn around and was on my way back, about 5 miles left.  This was great, we finally had some rolling hills.  I struggled up the hills, but was rewarded just after with a great downhill moment.  Just before mile 11 was a very large downhill, I hit 36 MPH on it and then noticed riders ahead of me turning.  I decided I would hold off on braking because the volunteers weren’t warning me.  This turned out to be a bad choice.  By the time I hit my rear break, I had to pull hard.  My bike started to skid out from underneath me.  I let go of the brake and was able to correct myself.  I had gone from 36 MPH to 11 MPH very quickly.

This was to be the final hill up before hitting a downward slope through transition.  I dismounted my bike and ran for transition.

Bike Time – 48:38 (16 MPH)

T2

I was a little annoyed by the way transition looked at this point.  One of my neighbors had thrown crap everywhere.  My towel was overturned, shoes weren’t together, my hat was missing.  It was a bit frustrating.  I kept my composure (sort of) and found everything.  I pulled socks on my sweaty feet, pulled my shoes on and left.

T2 Time – 2:30

Run

My run was nothing out of the ordinary for me.  I left transition at a 10 minute pace and slowed down around the end of the first mile.  This is where the hills started.  Up the hill I kept running, I could see the top and everyone talked about this one bad hill.  I knew that I just had to make it up the hill, make the turn and I was home free.  Nope.  I turned the corner and there was another hill.  I wasn’t expecting this.

I kept running to the top of the hill, slowly and a little defeated.  At the top of the hill all seemed to come into place.  Residents were in their driveways cheering us on.

“It’s all down hill from here”

“Keep going”

It was very encouraging as I made my way through the final mile.  There were supporters all over and I could finally see the finish line.  I ran hard, getting myself to a 7:30 pace for the final quarter mile.  I crossed the finish line and was immediately excited that I had finished my first triathlon.

Run Finish

Run Time – 34:54 (10:56/mile)

Final Time – 1:39:40

I wasn’t sure how far behind me Emily was, so I took my water and made my way to transition to change into a more comfortable pair of shorts and a sweatshirt.  From my bike, I heard in the distance, “Emily Frerman from Sheboygan” as the announcer let everyone know she had completed her race.  I ran over and whistled and cheered.

Elkhart Lake Finish

I appreciate the group that puts on this great race and how well organized it is.  It seems almost every detail is well thought out and for a first time triathlon racer, I needed that.  Emily and I loaded the car and then spent some time walking around the race grounds while the Olympic distance was still going on.  Emily won a gift card for something, and we had a little something to eat.

This was such a great time and I am glad that we have decided to move up from running and include swimming and cycling.  I am really looking forward to our race in August, but I know I have some work to do before then.

Registered for Our First Triathlon

This weekend we registered for our first triathlon, the Elkhart Lake Sprint Event!!!  Because we are new to the area, the last few months we’ve asked people about local tri events.  Elkhart Lake is consistently the number one race recommended to us.  For that reason, we decided to make it our first triathlon.

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The Elkhart Sprint is a 400M swim, 20K bike, and 5K run held on June 13, 2015.  According to the event website, the water temperature is usually between 61-72 degrees, therefore wetsuits are highly recommended.  The bike course is through rolling hills (oh, good) in north Sheboygan County, and the run is an out and back.

Without a doubt, Nick and I are looking forward to our first tri.  I am a little nervous about the open water swim and the need for a wetsuit in the cold water.  But that’s why you train, to overcome those obstacles and mentally prepare for the race.

Let the countdown begin!