Once a source of "Not all you want to know about Texas Adventure Racing," but now just some "leisure" adventure through the eyes of "The K-SPoT"

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Not Quite SEALS, But it was COMBAT

HART off to CombatSo I was coming off of the XTERRA high the weekend before and was actually really relaxed about the upcoming Combat Tri down in Texas City...perhaps too relaxed. I figured if I can do a crazy open water swim, a simple 300yd pool swim would be cake--I do this all the time during lunch! So I stayed with my regular training and went to HART on Tuesday and Thursday, did some short interval swims on Tuesday and Thursday, and rode my tri bike on Wednesday since it had been about 3 weeks since I've been on it.

my TAThe race would prove to be fun like XTERRA since both the Warship and Emoe were racing as well. Since it was practically in town, I took my sweet time that morning and did my usual ritual of mocha, muffin, and banana right before heading down. Once I got there it was already chaos at around 6am! By that time Warship and Emoe were all set in TA already and we laughing at me for arriving so late. It was thankfully okay since we all had assigned spots on the bike racks and I had already picked up my packet on Thursday, so I actually didnt have to rush around. Emoe had the sweet bonus of his daughter racing as well--the Moore Triathlon Team!

coming out of the swim, battered and bruisedSo after waiting a while in transition and the prerace briefing, we ambled over to the pool to line up. I was number 200-something, so I had quite a bit of time to wait since we were going in numerical order and 10 second increments. I actually didnt like the 10-second increment--the first tri I did gave us a full 25m head start before letting the next swimmer start. But that was a much smaller race, so I understood the 10 seconds--otherwise we would be there all day! So Warship, Emo, and I just stood by the edge of the pool and watched the chaos ensue. People were trying to pass, people were blocking, people were diving under and over people...nuts!

finally out of T1!It eventually was close to my time, so I filed in and slowly marched over to the start. I just didnt want to get passed! So in I jumped...1, 2, 3, GO! I tried to get into rhythm and it did work for a short while. I made the first turn and it looked like I was keeping my 10 sec lead over the next guy, so I kept going strong. I actually caught up with the woman ahead of me! She didnt let me pass at first, but at the next turn she let me go. I quickly caught up to the next guy, but he was a jerk! I obviously was trying to pass him, but he was so huge and there always seemed to be a swimmer coming the other way on the right side that I wasnt able to pass! The lady I had just passed actually caught back up with me and we were now involved in a 3-way scrum! I was so pissed, but I couldnt do anything other than punch the guy in the gut. So I just swam on his side for the rest of the way, trying to draft and rest so that I could smoke his ass on the bike.

yeehaw!We got out of the water and I sped pass the lumbering oaf and tried to quickly transition on to the bike. The girl was right next to me and she actually was on a relay team, so I didnt feel so bad that she was right there with me. I still dont have my swim to bike transition down--it was one of the slowest transitions in my age group!! I finally got on the bike and went straight to work. I actually felt really comfy on the bike despite not spending too much time on that particular machine. When I turned NW on I-45 I started picking off people one by one in pretty quick fashion. I was feeling really good and this was even in a slight headwind. Going up the overpass and now going SE on I-45 I was now a freight train with the tailwind! At times I got up to 26mph or so on the flat course. I never got passed by one person. Turning back to TA, I passed one more woman who looked pretty serious and didnt want me to pass her (she was working really hard to keep up). I ended up with almost a 24mph average--my quickest ever on the bike (even compared with all the Duathlons)!

DONE!So now to the dreaded run, 2nd dreaded after the swim. It started off similar to the XTERRA bike-run transition where I had just passed a pro-looking woman at the end of the bike only to get smoked by her near the start of the run. It happened again here, but this time instead of her being the only female to beat me at XTERRA, three women beat me at Combat...which I understood--these women are fast! Anyway, I just tried to keep my run around a 7 to 7:30 pace, which I eventually did. I actually passed people on the run too! Woohoo! It seemed like forever, but eventually the finish straight came and I hammered in around 1hr 7mins.

smiles all around!I actually felt really good and felt like I could go longer, which is a good sign. Results were up really quickly and my heart just dropped--I missed 3rd place by 24 seconds!! That was that horrible T1! Grrrr! Oh well, now I know what I need to improve on for real...other than swimming! I still felt good since I was able to finish top 5 in a sport I just started in, this being my 3rd ever tri, 2nd if you dont count XTERRA. The rest of the crew had a good outing too, with Warship and Emoe putting out swim times a lot better than what they predicted and Emoe's daughter getting 3rd place!

So that was pretty much it for Combat. I of course immediately started looking for the next tri...unfortunately all the Ironmans are booked until next year. ;)


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