Special Note: Unlike my last two events, wind will not be a topic in this post. If you like to watch me bitch about wind, please allow me to apologize in advance.
Did the Colorado Tri in the aquabike Olympic distance event this weekend (swim, bike, no run). My takeaway is I really like aquabike races! Mrs. Adultonset joined me in this one and did the swim leg as part of an aquabike relay team. As always, it was fun to be in the same race together 😊.
First, the exciting news: I won my age group and got to stand on the podium!
Now, I have to be honest: it was very much like the classic Talladega Nights movie quote, “If you ain’t first, you’re last.” Why do I say that? Well, because there were only two of us in the class…
On a more positive note, I took 10th overall for all aquabike racers. If I dig into the data a bit, my swim was not so special at 13th overall. Looking a little closer, though, I see that 5 of us were within a minute of each other and I was the slowest. So, it wouldn’t have taken a whole lot for me to move up a few spots there. In retrospect, I have no excuses. I was cold, but I came out of the water feeling pretty good (just a little dizzy from the cold inner ears 😵💫but that wasn’t an issue while actually still in the water).
As for my bike time, I was 6th overall, and within a few minutes of moving up 3 places. That makes a nice goal to work on for later this year or next. I know I have that in me — the bike certainly wants to go faster.
The swim (Strava) was tough. Race organizers announced the water temp as being 63 degrees and historically (or hysterically) I am a big baby about cold water. My watch assures me it was actually only 60. Very thankful for the new sleeved wetsuit Mrs. Adultonset gifted me with for Christmas this year. Sleeves make a world of difference in that cold water! It was tough getting going, but by the first buoy or so I was settled in and just getting it done. The temp wasn’t really an issue once I was done gasping in shock from putting my face in it.
Folks were a little crazed and I took more than few hits and punches along the entire course, but I kept my face in the water and just kept moving. Total swim was expected to be 1500 yards, but I think we came in at just over 1600 or so. My pace was 1:51/100 — slower than I had hoped for, but considering the conditions, I am not complaining.
The bike leg (Strava) was, as always, just a lot of fun. I sure love getting my tri bike outside and off the trainer. That makes it so much more enjoyable to ride. As I said earlier that bike is still faster than I am… but I will keep working on using all that potential.
The stretch of the route on highway 36 in Boulder is always a bit tough — hard to pass when car traffic is that close — and I definitely got slowed down there this race compared to some past efforts. I saw some seriously stupid stuff from a few riders but thankfully nobody got hit by cars (that I am aware of). Once off the highway, the rest of the course is an absolute blast and I PR’d some segments towards the end that I have ridden dozens of times and that feels pretty damned good. I’ll admit that some of those PRs are because I realized, a bit late, that I didn’t need to save anything for the run. Once that hit me, I started burning the remaining matches and went a bit nuts. So fun!
I drove to this race this morning pretty sure this might be my last aquabike event. Thankfully, I reserved the right to change my mind. Not saying I rushed to sign up for more races later that day (honestly, the dance card is pretty full) but doing this again is very much still on the table. Just not for early or late season when the water is so dang cold.