Tri Talk Tuesday: REV3TRI Sprint Tri Up Next!
My first triathlon of the season is coming up May 1st! I'll be doing the sprint distance tri of the REV3TRI series. This will be a great warm-up to the upcoming Olympic distance at the NYC Tri coming up in July!
**Just to give you some perspective on the distance, a Sprint triathlon distance is a 250 yd swim, 12 mile bike ride and 3.1 mile run and an Olympic triathlon distance is 1 mile swim (1,760 yds), 25 mile bike ride and 6.2 mile run.
I'm going into this race confident and feeling strong. Most of my training brick workouts (back to back disciplines, ie: swim and bike, bike and run etc.) are almost always that length of distance or longer so my body is used to that type of activity already.
The swim portion of the REV3TRI will take place at a recreational pool. Even though I would have liked to swim in open water (to help me get over my fear), this will be a great practice tri for me. I have only participated in 1 triathlon which was the Mermaid Sprint Tri back in October. The toughest part for me then was the swim and it was in open water. Even the adrenaline of race day couldn't surpass the fear I had swimming in that ocean water. I'm just amazed that I finished that swim at all with basically no swim training under my belt. Swimming is an incredible workout and I didn't have the technique down then so it was a struggle--I spent 19 minutes in the water to swim a 300 yard distance. To think my feet never touched the ground for 19 minutes still blows my mind. I'm going into this swim with confidence and training to go with. I'm not prepared for that full mile yet but I will be come July!
I have focused heavily on building my leg strength during my training. Not only does this mean a lot of heavy leg days at the gym but it also means cycling 5 times a week. I have spent most of my cycling training on an indoor spin bike and have noticed that my stamina and leg strength had improved drastically. Not only can I climb for longer periods of time but I have also outgrown several pairs of jeans--those quad muscles are getting big! I recently just got a bike and am still getting familiar riding outside. With the weather warming up, I plan to get in several outdoor rides before the sprint tri May 1.
Running is by far my strongest discipline--this is really funny to type and read. If you would have told me a few years back that I would be an avid runner and subscriber of Women's Running Magazine I would have laughed so hard in disbelief. Back then that was so far from the truth. What started as a weight loss mechanism for me turned into a daily therapy session that I can't be without. Running is a release and a joy and something I look forward to. On a regular day, a 5K is a cake walk for me. My fastest 5K is 24 min which is an 8 min per mile pace. That 8 min pace is one that I won't be able to keep during the sprint tri because I'll have the swim and bike taking it's toll on my body. My goal is to not to walk and I feel that is a very attainable.
I am looking forward to getting comfortable with transitions. After the swim and the bike there will be transitions (typically labeled T1 after the swim and T2 after the bike). Transitions are the periods when you are finishing one discipline and moving on to the next. Sure it sounds easy, "Lauren, after you swim you bike". Yes, you are correct but there are some things to consider so you are prepared for the distance ahead. I know I'll be swimming in a rec pool but I will be wearing my wetsuit because I plan to wear a wetsuit for the NYC Tri too. It's already challenging enough to put on a wetsuit when it's dry so you can imagine the effort when you peel it off when it's wet. On top of that adrenaline is going through your veins and you're mentally preparing for the bike ahead. Keep in mind there isn't a changing station or local bathroom available during this transition so you can go about it 2 ways, swim in your bathing suit and throw on dry clothes after or wear a triathlon kit under your wetsuit. A tri kit is either a top and a bottom or a singlet (one piece) that is made from special fabric that dries quickly and is durable for all that activity.You wear it for all 3 disciplines making it easy for you to focus on the race and nothing else. This will be my first time wearing a tri kit so I am excited to experience the difference.