Saturday, June 23, 2012

Litchfield Hills Oly Expectations

Tomorrow is my first Olympic Tri since August 22nd, 2010.  And ironically enough, the last Oly I did is the same one I have tomorrow, the Litchfield Hills Olympic.

As you might have gleaned from my sprint tri reports, I've gotten better.  I also got better at the half distance at Rev3.  So it comes as no surprise that I expect another PR tomorrow morning.  That, however, is not how I am measuring the performance.  As I always have been, I am super competitive with myself. 

Looking back at 2010...
My first Oly was August 15th, 2010; one week prior to Litchfield.  I was so excited after that race that I signed up for Litchfield that Tuesday.  The only things I knew going into Litchfield were the distances and that there's some hill towards the end that everyone talks about.  As you know from the course preview HERE, that hill is a demon straight from down under!  But this time I'm much more prepared for battle.

Here are my goals...

I swam a 22:14 in 2010 on a 0.8 mile course (they let us know post-race that it was incorrectly measured).  At 0.9 miles, I would have swum 25:01.  If I match my speed at Rev3, I'd be at 24:34.  I know I can beat that.  Ideally, I'd like to rock the swim and be 22:00, but I'd be happy with a steady progression of sub-24:00.

I'm used to a T1 of somewhere up to 2:00.  In 2010, I had a T1 of 5:42 not because I was slow, but because of the 0.25 mile uphill run from the lake to transition.  ...and because I was slow.  To the right is a picture of the run from swim exit to T1.  See all the stones?  And the guy behind me wore flip-flops!!

This year, I know what to expect, so I'm prepared.  Given some changes, I believe I can get T1 down under 2:30.

In 2010, I rode a 1:21:11 which included walking my bike from dismount to transition because I was still recovering from the demon hill.

That's a picture of me walking up to transition.  I couldn't even muster the energy to run for the camera.  How sad!

Anyways, I rode the course preview in 1:24:xx on Wednesday and I'm confident I can cut some serious time.  I acknowledge that I blew up at Rev3 Half (18mph), but point out that I've been rocking the sprint distance (23mph).  With the hills, I'm shooting for a 20 or 21 mph average.  If so, I should finish under 1:12:00.  I also want to get off knowing that I got in as much nutrition as I possibly could. 

No need to lolligag here.  Switch shoes, helmet/hat, and be off.  In 2010, I was at 0:55, which means I should be able to cut that down to 0:30

Here's where we'll really be able to tell how I perform.  Did I get in my nutrition?  Can I handle the mental torture?  I ran 55:48 (9:00 pace) in 2010.  Considering my recent performances, I'm shooting for a 7:00 pace, sub-44:00. 

If all goes as planned, I'll be across the finish line in under 2:23, a PR at this race of 26 minutes.  From there it's onto the course record of 1:59:21. 


1.  What's the most unique transition you've ever experienced?
IM 70.3 Vegas was a long run and a winding bike exit, but Litchfield was the worst with the 0.25 mile rocky run.  The only thing they tell you is "There is a 0.25 mile run to transition so bring an extra pair of shoes." 

2.  Are you competitive by default or do you have to work at forcing the mentality?
If someone is ahead of me, no matter how I feel, I automatically want to pass them.  Even if I hold back and let myself recover while they surge ahead, I am planning a later surge to overtake them.  The whole "slow down and enjoy the race" mentality baffles me because competing is my enjoyment.  

Swim fast.  Bike smart.  Run hard. 

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