It really must be December now since I can hardly fit in my trisuit. Love handles are bulging out at the seams. Good thing there were races this past weekend to hold the fatness at bay for a few hours at least 🙂
The UPLB NAGT which was originally scheduled on October 3 finally pushed through last Saturday with an 8:30am gunstart, instead of the usual 2pm in previous years. Course was still the same as last year’s version which was good – it’s always nice to see if I can improve on last year’s time. My wave started at 10:30am.
Swim – 15:44
8 loops, 4 x 25 meter/loop. Jumping back to the pool after each 100m loop pretty much guarantees that it will be virtual washing machine throughout. Was ecstatic climbing out after the first loop and seeing Leo Oracion diving for his second one 🙂 Twas the last time I saw him during the swim though. The challenge in ‘multi-loops’ racing is making sure that I do the required number of loops so I won’t get disqualified. I mean it’s ok to go overboard just like I did at the MOA duathlon last June but to get DQ’d just because I did not do enough loops….I’d rather not think about it. So, that was all I thought about during the swim: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8. I was happy to see that I improved upon my last year’s time by a minute 🙂
Transition 1 – 1:22
Lately, I’ve had my shoes on and just clipping them before I begin my ride because I have a hard time putting my feet inside the shoes during the actual ride itself. I know it will make for a faster transition time. Something to ponder and work on for next year.
Bike – 56:10
4 loops of around 8kms per loop. Did not bother counting loops this time because of the odometer 🙂 The course is pretty much flat with gradual and hardly noticeable inclines in certain segments. The weather was cool although it was probably almost noon at this point. In fact, it was even drizzling at certain stages. Encountered headwind each time after the rotonda on the way back. There were a couple of times when momentum was lost on account of traffic build-up where I had to slow down and bide my time in passing the jeep/tricycle for safety reasons but other than that, I tried to keep a solid pace, spinning the cranks with the right amount of effort that would not build up lactic in the quads. For the bike leg, I was slower by 6 seconds from last year 😦
Transition 2 – 1:10
Coach Rick shouted that it was, in fact, lunch time. Good thing the sun was hiding behind the clouds 🙂 And it was December, so that helped also. Made sure to tighten the laces this time around which was probably the reason transition time was over a minute in this race.
Run – 27:30
One thing I’ve learned is that the different distances in triathlon races present different challenges. Short distances are not easy and longer distances does not necessarily mean harder. In fact, some would say that sprint distances are the toughest just because one races at threshold pace throughout the supposedly ‘short’ distance. Such was the case for me in this race. Was already huffing and puffing even as I began my first loop. Of course, that incline out of transition didn’t help matters. But the downhill section after that gave me the opportunity to coast and reload until the incline shows up again. Running at a steady pace and reflecting on the year that has gone by. Last multisport race of the year has gotten me nostalgic 🙂 Soon enough, I got to the finish line and finished at 1:41:58 by my watch. Run was slower by 9 seconds from last year, but overall result was faster by a minute. I’ll take that 🙂
Didn’t plan on running this race when it was originally scheduled sometime in October I think. But then, in the midst of discussing preparations for the long distance races next year, I forced Javy to include me for this one since he wanted to do a 30K run in his preparation for Langkawi. Alas, Javy got sick in the wee hours of Sunday morning 😦
Remember when I said that the New Balance Run was the toughest 21K yet? Well, that title didn’t last long because of this one. It’s the same New Balance route except that instead of going to the International School area, the first few kms were spent going to the Makati Business District which meant the Kalayaan flyover on the way back. Also, while McKinley Hill was a constant in the 2 races, the runners for this race had to run all the way to the C5 turnaround point which meant cresting that short but very steep hill on the way back. A challenging course for sure and it’s just too bad I was in no condition to race this one. I barely slept Saturday night after watching Avatar in 3D 🙂 Thus, for this race the goals were simply to maintain good form throughout, establish consistent cadence and NEVER walk ’em hills.
I was busy chatting with Hector and Bobby at the barriers when suddenly the race started at around 5:40am. It was a cool morning and drizzling just as it was at Los Banos the day before. Took advantage of every water station nonetheless. One advantage of running at a pace below race effort is that I was able to notice/appreciate the surroundings a bit more – just like that rainbow that appeared when I was inside McKinley Hill 🙂
I finished at 2:06:01 by my watch. From what I’ve gathered in reading the other blogs, it appears that the course was longer than 21K. The Garmin users who ran the race said that the course measured 22.2k. Sayang, sub-2 sana 🙂
As far as initial goals were concerned, I think I was only able to achieve the third one 🙂 There were certain points where I knew my form suffered together with the cadence as a necessary consequence. But all in all, I was still satisfied with my effort in this race. After all, it was about putting the mileage in as I am about the begin the running block in my training.
No rest for the weary this holiday season. Next up: Rizal Day 32K Run.