I've Still Got It

With only 4 days til the race, I figured out my training plan...

Tuesday: Swim 1/4 mile
Wednesday: Bike 13.8 miles
Thursday: Run 3.5 miles
Friday: Off
Saturday: Swim 1/4 mile, Bike 13.8 miles, Run 3.5 miles

Great plan, eh?

So I got to work on it, and squeezed in a little time at the Y this morning. What I dislike about our pool? They only have 2 lap lanes, which means I will almost ALWAYS have to share. What I love about our pool? How WARM it is! One of the main things that kept me out of the pool last year is no longer a concern. I don't have to "ease" my way in or take an ice-cold shower beforehand. The water temperature is somewhere in the 80s which is just perfect.

I had two options this morning... sharing a lane with an older gentleman who seemed to be a pretty good swimmer... or share a WIDER lane with a 6 year old boy who was learning how to swim for the first time.

That little boy and I were a great pair. His slow swimming and wall-clinging meant I hardly even knew he was there.

Ryan bought me knew goggles for my birthday (my old ones were falling apart and you couldn't see anything through them). They worked wonderfully... no leaking, no fogging, etc.

I swam 1/4 mile (18 laps) in 10 minutes, without stopping. I was surprised at how good I did considering this was only my second time in the pool in months. It seems to me if I actually WORKED at my swimming, I might not be half bad. But come on... who wants to work at things?!


I took my bike to the LBS today to have it checked out.

Bike Guy: "Well, it may be something wrong with the derailleur, but--not to sound insulting--it may be an EDUCATION problem."


I think he just called me stupid.

But he's probably right. I know HOW to change my gears, but I don't know WHEN to change them or WHY to change them or HOW to change them (oh... scratch that first part). So it may just be that I'm mis-using my bike. Poor Reagan.

Bike Guy: "Why is the back wheel skewer different than the front one?"

I told him it was from my trainer (the instructions that came with my trainer said it was perfectly find to ride with it in, so I just never replaced my old one).

Bike Guy: "Well, it's VERY loose." (fiddles with it... SNAP!) "Oh... um... it just broke."

Wow. Awesome.

He felt aweful for what he'd done, so he ran to the back and grabbed a new one for my bike.

He then took it for a spin around the store and tightened some bolts and things. He returned my bike to me and informed me that EVERYTHING had been loose on it. He said I definitely need a tune up... but that their store had a week-long waiting list for said tune up. He assured me it would make it through the weekend just fine.



Speaking of the weekend, I'm nervous about this lake swim. I've never done any out-and-back swim like this. The swim course at my first tri was out-and-back, but it ran parallel to the shoreline. It was shallow enough to walk at any point in the swim.

So when you're doing a lake swim... how deep does it get? I'd actually prefer it to be deeper so that all the seaweed and fishies can stay far away from me.

I had a triathlon-dream the other night that the swim-portion was in a rushing river... and we had to swim UP stream! At least this will be nothing like that.

Anyone got any swimming tips?


Mike said...

Oh boy, where do I start here. Umm...the easiest way to think of the gears is to use them to keep your legs moving at a constant speed.

Only you can tell what that constant speed is, if you start to go up a hill and it gets tough to pedal (aka. your pedal RPM has now slowed) switch to and easier gear to keep the pedals moving and power up the hill. Same thing in reverse coming down a hill. Now your pedals and feet are flailing about wildly, switch to a harder gear.

That is pretty much the basics. Other good rule of thumb to follow is if you have a triple crank (three rings by the pedals) don't shift the front derailleur to the large chainring and the largest cassette in the back, keep it's use to the smaller 3/4ths of the gears and vise versa with the small chainring to the small cogs on the cassette. The middle you should be able to ride just about anywhere. Your best bet is to get out and mess around with what feels comfortable.

Hope this helps!!! Good luck!!!

Gina said...

I agree with Mike about the shifting. Also, when I am shifting - especially uphill - I ease up on the pedals for a bit to make the shift easier.

As for the lake swim...how deep depends on the lake. Also, do you ever practice sighting when you are in the pool? That helps when you are in open water. I sight the buoys as I go along the course. When I sight at the pool I lift my head forward and look at something (usually the starting block at the end) before turning my head to breathe and continuing on. My team does this drills fairly regularly, actually.

Anyway, if you have another chance to practice this before great, but if not just take it easy out there. Maybe you'll have a chance to warm up on race morning and you can give it a quick try. I bet you'll be fine though. :)

Karen said...

I say put the chip on Maggie and let her do the swim leg.

The Lazy Triathlete said...

I have man advice (which means I get in trouble when I offer it)--don't sweat the swim. Just sight on the buoys and continue to swim. The fish don't want you there and if you happen to run into one, it will probably think gross, a human.

Anonymous said...

Maybe I have a chance as you will probably go in the wrong direction during the swim. Did you see our starting times? I am in the wave in front of you, which is about a 4minute difference. Not much of a lead, but better than nothing.
As to the swim, there will be so many people in the water that the fish will get scared away. Especially once they see me. so you are safe.
As to the shifting with the bike, Mike said it very well.
That leaves us with the run, my weak point. I am not built for running like you. So that could be the deciding point in the finish.
Looking forward to it. It should be a blast, especially with the heat we are having.

Dad, A Clydsdale Master!!!!

Rainmaker said...

Wow, it actually sounds like a good thing that he broke the skewer. There's no way it should have broken that easily, so perhaps it was about to go. So much better to break it in the shop and replace a $3 part than to have it happen on the course.

Good luck this weekend!

peter said...

Awright, you already got your swim time, 10 minutes. Now get a bike time the next day, a run time on Thursday and you're there! You can sleep in on Saturday after mailing in your results. Good luck!

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