Tri Rock San Diego 2013

I decided a couple of weeks before Tri Classic that I wanted to get in another triathlon. This one was close to the Tri Clasic, so I decided to sign up.

My training after the Tri Classic wasn’t as good as I would have liked. I think the whole time that, do I really want to finish the race? I did, but I think I won’t have this opportunity any time soon, so I decided to sign up. During the two weeks leading up to the race, TriRock decided to make changes to the swim and bike portions of the race. The start and finish were swapped and the bike didn’t go north but south and wasn’t a 3 loop bike route but a 2 loop and the distance for the sprint racers on the swim was longer by 2.5 miles. So many changes were made to the course.

Race morning was ok. I didn’t think that the race was going to be that hard. Little did I know about this course and what challenges I had that morning. I just had the jitters not knowing how the water was going to be or how the roads were going to feel. I heard many things from other people about how unorganized and how bad the course was. I didn’t want to read into it to much just to make myself feel that the race was going to be any harder or worse compared to the Tri Classic.

The swim portion looked fine. I wasn’t going to be used to swimming with buoys on my right, but I think I had an idea. The race morning didn’t start as planned. The transition area was weird in that there weren’t any signs to see where your bike was. They were numbered based on your bib. I was lucky to have the end for my transition spot. It was really close to the middle of the whole race. The transition area closed 15 minutes prior to our swim start, but the swim didn’t start on time. They were saying it was low tide and so they were afraid for the athletes to enter into the water. When they did finally let us in, it was about 20 minutes after the original start time. The group I was part of was a large group of 30-39 males. We were the first wave. I was glad about that, so that I wouldn’t be so left behind in the end. When we started, I felt really good. I wasn’t feeling too scared or that the water was too warm or just anything bad. At about the 400m buoy is where I started to feel a little worried. I wasn’t going as fast as I normally would swim in my opinion. I felt there was something holding me back. I wish I could go faster, but it didn’t seem to help. I kept at it and I looked at my watch and noticed I wasn’t swimming as fast. I was at 30 minutes and only at the 400m buoy. What was going on? I didn’t know. I felt like I was held back and that there was something that I had problems with. I kept at it. I knew I was off course because one of the guys on the surfboards said that I was way off to the right and I had to swim to the left. When I sighted for the 700m buoy, I kept thinking that this is a long swim. I finally got to that point and was at 50 minutes on my time. I knew there was one more buoy at 800 m for the turn around, but I didn’t know if that would take me another 15 and then to come back. My time was slipping and I didn’t know what to do. I probably got past the 700m buoy and then heard the race officials saying something. They said to cut across because we were in the water too long. Oh man, did I feel relieved. I asked once if they were sure and they said yes, so I swam across and wow what a relief. It took me about 25 minutes to swim the rest of the course back. When I finally got out of the water, I made my way back to the transition area. It was a long run. It felt like a quarter mile. I saw my brother and cousin asking what took me so long.

In T1, it took me a long time to put on my socks. That probably took at least a minute and a half. The helmet, glasses and bib were easy. I was off on the bike for a two loop 22 mile ride. The part coming out of transition was nice, the bike mount simple and the start was good. Once we got onto Harbor Drive is where the fun began. It started off with a small hill. The rest of the course was bumpy. You really had to watch for pot holes and also there were portions of the bike that we had to slowdown because of no passing. When we got onto the base, it was better only because the roads were paved well. But it had a lot of turns. I felt that the turn slowed you down and the fact that there was a head wind throughout the course. I was able to ride my bike a lot faster because the whole course was flat pretty much, which I liked a lot. The first lap for me took a while to get used to just cuz of my heart rate and my legs. Once I got onto the second lap, things were going well. I think that I was able to go faster and maintain it. I remember initially my butt was not feeling well, but after the first two miles, they were fine. Coming back into the transition for the run, was going to be fun.

The bike to run transition for T2 was fast for me. I took off the cycling shoes and put on my running shoes and took off the helmet. I put on my visor and I was off with my bottle. I was happy this run was going to be flat. I didn’t know if it was going to be hot or not. There were portions of the run that were cool. The breeze helped a lot and that the heat was not so intense. I remember the first lap being ok. I was able to do it the way I liked. I wanted to run as much as possible and to not walk as much. I was glad I had a bottle with me so that I wouldn’t have to rely on the aid stations. I did have both and it really helped me a lot. The out and back loop was a good run. There were tons of tourists around and it made it exciting to do. When I started to run I saw my wife and son and I was happy there were there to see me. The second lap was a little bit more tough. 3 miles to go and I had to head to the restroom. Good thing, there was a spot I could go at mile 4. After the quick stop, I was back on the course. I knew I couldn’t keep the pace I liked, but I knew that I could keep the running going still. I got to the turnaround point and was able to go back. I had about 1.5 miles left. I felt strong and continued to go at the pace I was comfortable with. The last mile I did stop a little bit, just because I wanted to make a good effort on the last quarter mile. I saw my family and I made a good last ditch effort to the finish. It was a long one down the stretch. I finally got there and was done.

I took some time to get my body refueled a little with food and drink. I was happy it was over.

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