Friday, September 20, 2013

Pre-Race: 5150 Galveston

5150 Galveston Logo

Well, we're all settled in down here in Galveston.  TJ is fast asleep and Analise and I are actually getting a chance to relax.  It's always nice when racing can also mean a chance to get away from the normal routine. 

5150 has always struck me as an odd name for a race.  Yeah, I get how they came up with it, but it's not nearly as intuitive and recognizable as something like 70.3, 140.6, IM, HIM, Sprint, OD, etc., and not just because it's in metric.  I prefer metric, but try telling someone you're doing a 5150, and you're more than likely to get a blank stare. 

So, for the uninitiated, 5150 is the brand name WTC chose for their Olympic distance race series.  Olympic distance (OD) is a 1.5km swim, 40km bike and 10km run, and WTC is the organization that owns the Ironman brand. I've done a number of WTC races and they've always been high quality events.  This'll be my first 5150 though and I'm excited to see how they do. 

OD races are historically my worst distance.  Of course, my "history" only consists of three races, none of which have gone well.  I did two in 2007, just weeks after buying my first bike.  I think I finished both in about 2:45, and while they were good experience, they were tough events with unimpressive times.  In 2012 I did Kemah just a months after TJ was born.  Not surprisingly, my body was wasted and the race was a disaster.  I finished right at 2:30 and walked most of the run.  The relatively long swim doesn't play to my strengths, and this distance is tough to pace. 

All that said, I'm pretty optimistic about this race.  While the past couple of months haven't been great training, I'm feeling better than I have in a while and should at least be pretty well rested, if maybe a bit flat.  I've been swimming more than I ever have in my life and I'll be racing the new bike for the first time!

I am a little concerned though.  This is the sight that greeted me when we drove up today:

Yikes!  That's some chop there.  But we actually swim in a protected bay, so that's NOT what it'll be like!

This swim course is a simple two turn course, so hopefully navigation isn't a problem:


I'm going to keep the pace fairly moderate and focus on keeping good form throughout.   My hope is to be in the 26 minute range, but anywhere from 26-28 is realistic.


This is as simple as it gets for a bike course.  Out and back, flat as can be.  There will probably be a fairly heavy cross wind, so hopefully it's not too gusty.  I've never had a problem with a disc and deep front, even in Lubbock, but it's still nice not to have to focus too much on that.  On a stand along 40k course, I would do this in ~58 minutes.  At 90% CP, it'll probably be closer to 63-65 minutes but this is one leg that could be a bit faster.


So I get dizzy just looking at that map.  So many turns, but it keeps us in a local area, which usually means a lot of water stations.  That'll be crucial, because it means a lot of water and ice to dump over the torso to cool off.  Storm conditions mean it'll be slightly cooler anyway, so it could be a nice day to run.  My run fitness is lagging, so I can't run fast right now.  A 40-42 minute 10k is about all I can expect.

Adding all that up with about 3 minutes of transition results in 2:12-2:18.  That's not a superb time, but still pretty solid considering I've still got a long way to go fitness wise.   Regardless, it should be a fun race and a good test of where my fitness is.  Cozumel is approaching fast, so there isn't much time to waste!

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