Monday, August 26, 2013

Race Review : Maple Grove Sprint Triathlon

Three years ago I did the Olympic distance at this race, didn't like it too much. Last year I did the sprint and won my age group, this year I went back to defend my title. Overall I had a great time, though again my wife did not. She wrote her thoughts down and did a quick post DURING the race. While I like this race, I will give careful consideration to her feelings before choosing this race again.

Packet Pickup

I went up to Maple Grove the day before the race. The expo was similar to other years, little booths around that I glanced at briefly. I'm just not an expo guy. I walked in, gave them my number and much to my surprise the lady asked me what color swim cap I wanted. That's a first. I choose orange over silver. Head over and get my t-shirt and then headed out. Quick and painless. One plus, this year they didn't give me a bib that said Olympic in big letters on it. Though I did notice that at least one guy thought he was entered in the wrong distance race.

Race Morning

The race started at 7:30, I was planning on getting there by 6. So I got up at 4. I got up, had some breakfast, a bottle of water, another bottle for the road, and a bottle for the bike. The weather forecast had a chance of thunderstorms and a lot of wind with highs approaching 90. I woke up to no thunder or even rain. The temperature seemed good. But I loaded my bike in the trunk just in case - dry bike is a good bike :)

On the drive up I saw a lot of people passing me with bikes on the backs of their cars and in their back seats. I thought to myself, I'm the slowest triathlete driving down the interstate!

I found a parking spot in a rapidly filling up parking lot and pulled my bike out of the trunk. Temp was great, the sun was rising, and the skies looked clear and I couldn't really feel any wind. As I was getting my stuff all put together I noticed the lady who parked in front of me was having a small panic attack relating to her bike. I walked over on my way out and asked her if she needed anything. Apparently her bike tire was flat and wouldn't hold air. She suggested she had changed her tire the night before and may have gotten it wrong. She said she had a spare but didn't feel like she had time to fix it. I told her not worry, there would more than likely be a bike mechanic or five at the race site. I told her to grab her stuff and her spare, and walk her bike over to the race site, they would be more than happy to change her tire for her. I wished her a good race and went on my way. I was happy to see when I got to the race site there were plenty of bike mechanics from the local bike shop. I saw the her some time later before the race start, she was in her wet suit and looked ready to race.

I got marked up, found my assigned place on the racks and got set up. Over the next 40 minutes or so I chatted with the guys around me about whatever. A sort of neat thing about this race is that the series seems to have attracted a lot of repeat racers and I ran into a couple of the same guys who were racked near me at the Minneapolis tri. It was kinda neat to see some familiar faces. There were also a bunch of people who had signed up for the entire series and had the little series transition mats.

Race meeting time came, before the meeting a guy from work came up. That's always fun, we chatted a bit. Then made our way over to the gathering place for the swim start. I made myself comfortable for the next hour or so until they got to my start time. All in all, there were 1,600 racers and i was just about in the middle of the group.

A view of the swim start gathering area

Closer shot
My wife found me in the holding area. Actually, she ran into the guy from work first, who she didn't already know. That's a funny coincidence.

Me and the kids. I thought it was almost time to swim

The Swim

When I lined up for the swim I ran into another guy from the Minneapolis tri. He ended up passing me about a mile into the run in that race and probably ended up second in our group. He seems like a good guy, he bills himself as a slower swimmer. I made a joke that it will be nice to see him again on the run when he passes me again :)

This year the start was a time-trial start, two at a time, four seconds apart. I lined up near the front of our group and took it out pretty solid. Because of the time trial start and because the caps were mixed I had no way of knowing where I was in relation to anyone else in my group. I passed a bunch of people and only ran into bad traffic once or twice.

The kids waiting for me to get out of the water
Overall the swim felt good, a good effort that I was happy with. I exited and started a long run to my bike.

Running by - having a good race so far

The Bike

The run to the my bike seemed to take forever. When I got to my spot things seemed to go fine. I was surprised that there were people near me getting on their bikes. It was a little confusing though because I was pretty sure they weren't all in my age group due to pre-swim analysis of numbers.

I headed out, and got going. The plan was to try to do what it took to meet my goals. This is contrary to the way I usually race which is to do what feels maintainable and good. The forecast had called for a pretty good chance for 15-20mph winds coming from the south-east. This bike course run straight south for a couple miles, then west for a mile then north for 6 and then back. Overall it's like a figure eight. So I was surprised that the wind didn't seem terrible during the first leg. Some of that may have been adrenaline because when I look at my splits I can see the noticeable impact the wind had on my splits. Having the wind at my back for six miles felt pretty good.

The ride was going pretty well, I was passing people, unfortunately there were also plenty of people passing me. I counted at least four from my age group blow past me. Admittedly it was a little confusing because there were also a fair number of people starting out on the Olympic course. I didn't realize that until we got to the split and almost everyone in front of me went out on the other course. That actually made me feel kind of good, because it might have meant that the people who were passing me were not doing my race. I didn't hold my breath though.

After the six mile downwind leg we made the turn ... and there was the wind. With only four or five miles to go my legs were start to feel the effort. There was no question in my head that I had worked the bike pretty well. Coming into transition I was pretty confident that I had basically met the bike goal.

Transition went pretty well, and another long run through the transition area. Thankfully this time with shoes.

Note to race directors: If someone has just chip-sealed the transition area, no amount of sweeping or vacuuming is going to help. Running through that mess with no shoes was PAINFUL. Fair notice, I've been given the nickname "tenderfoot" ... so I might not be a representative of all racers. But still, some cheap carpet or something would have been heavenly.

Coming out of transition

Smiling, I just saw my wife with a huge smile on her face

This is what I look like when you're coming up behind me on the run :) A likely scenario

The Run

I was dreading the first little hill, last year I got a big ol' cramp and had to stop for a second. Thankfully that didn't happen this year. I went up the hill, through the little cliff-shot zone which took a new turn that wasn't there last year. It wasn't much of a change, I'm guessing it just worked out better for doing the feed zone.

After I got past the hill I glanced down and noticed I was WAY off pace. It felt good, hard but maintainable, I felt like I was moving well, but it wasn't translating to goal pace. Mile one ticks by, low 9. Uh oh.

I push a little harder. And there he goes .. the guy from the swim line, the same guy from the Minneapolis race. When he passed me there I was in second, at this point I figured I was in ... at best 9th. And he didn't pass me with the same speed he had before. I was running slower and so was he, it took him much longer to pull out of view this time. I tried to keep up for a while, but just could not get my legs to turn over. Mile two ticks by, low 9 again. I am watching my goal slip away.

Keep pushing. Honestly, if I didn't have my watch on I would have sworn I was holding a great pace. I felt like I had good turn over and keeping a decent form, it just wasn't fast. Over the next mile I keep trying to figure out ways to get moving. Move my legs faster, move my arms faster, small surges, etc. Nothing.

The Finish

The Olympic course had a run change this year, they come back into the park along the finish line and the second lap is exactly the same as the first one. So everyone starts down the finish line. I was feeling good, spent, but good. I really felt like I had a good race. I knew I had missed my goal, but I felt like I gave it what I had.

Waiting for me to finish

Here I come

Zoooooom! Faster than the shutter on the camera!
The Results


Well, I missed again. I mean I saw it slipping away on the run. I just could not find that gear.

The Swim
That's good for 4th overall and second in my age group.

The Bike
20 seconds isn't much. The wind was brisk, I pushed pretty hard and I'm happy with this.

The Run
Uhh, I guess I'm going to have to be honest and say that this year I just didn't put in enough time running. I stopped running further than four miles about half way through the summer. So I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that I just didn't have the legs to get my body to get going.

17/79 in my age group. 81/785 overall. Now, obviously this is a major change from the rest of the results this year where I think I had a top 10 or close to top 10 finish. Two thoughts on that. First, I didn't come close to my top speed. I missed by five minutes.

Quite note on that - if you're doing the math you'll see that I was only off by just under 4 minutes in "main leg" times. The rest came in transitions. And can you guess what? That first transition was THREE FULL MINUTES! At first I was shocked! And then I looked closer, it actually wasn't terribly slow compared to others. Don't get me wrong, I didn't win the transition race, but it's not like everyone else was doing sub minute. The run was basically up and down the full length and width of transition barefoot.

The second thought - faster people showed up. Even if I had met my goal, that was only good enough for 6th place in the age group. I ran into the guy who got second at Minneapolis, he was just as surprised as I was at the speed difference. If I guessed his name right, he ended up 9th.

I had to wrangle the finisher's medal off my daughter for this shot

Closing Comments

I had a great time. I felt like I turned in what I had and while I didn't end up making my goals I am pretty satisfied with my effort. My wife and kids were there the entire time, I got a chance to chat with a guy from work, and even got to see some familiar faces from other races.

I'd say that lifetime did a good job with the series, I mean if the same set of people show up at all the races they must have done something to attract them and it was fun to be part of that.

Having said all that, I agree with my wife that I don't really think the venue can support this race. I thought that the first year, and it was re-enforced this year. It seems almost silly that this site has no (not an exaggeration) on-site parking. Everything else is great, good volunteers, good energy, well organized, etc. But, I really want a race to be a good spectator experience for my cheering team. So we'll see, I said I wouldn't go back last year and I did. Maybe I'll do it again, but it's on the naughty list.

A big thanks to my family who came out and yelled and cheered for me. My wife who took pictures and stayed pretty positive even though she was really a sort of downer morning.

Aunty Bethany, a triathloner her in her right came out and hooted and hollered at me
That's it for triathlons this year. I have one more goal on the year, attempt at a new 10k PR. At the start of the season I was feeling good about that, less now. But I'm going to give it a go, I'm hoping that overall fitness means that I can build some speed sort of quickly since I won't also be trying to keep bike fitness.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Race Preview - Maple Grove Sprint Triathlon

I did this race last year, and I won my age group so I wanted to go back and try again.

Race Info
The swim is triangle with right turns. A new feature this year is a time-trial start by twos. That makes it official, I will not do any races this year that aren't time trial start. They are billing the race distance as .3 miles, though last year I remember thinking it was short.

The bike is a little over 14 miles, it's mainly flat.I took a quick look at the weather forecast for Saturday. It's calling for 12-18 mph winds. We'll see though, usually early in the morning the wind isn't bad. If it is though, the forecast says it will be at my back for the longest stretch, that will be nice.

The run is through neighborhoods around the lake. I've been pretty flip-floppy on how hilly the course is. There's a hill at the start and a couple of hills at the end. Going into the race last year I thought it wasn't hilly. Coming out I thought it was hillier than I remembered. Considering my run performance has been dreadful this year, I'm hoping it's closer to flat than hilly :)

My goal for this race will be to set a goal that I think is fast, and actually obtain it. I *think* I have missed every goal this year.

My goals for december looked like this
Swim7:001:20 per 100 yards
Bike39:4521.5 miles/hour
Run24:008:00 mins/mile

Last year that was good enough to win my age group, two years ago it was good enough for top 3.

Closing Comments
I'm looking forward to this race, it's the last race of the year. I'm feeling pretty good, all I need to do now is execute.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Epic Battle : Mind vs. Legs

A week or so ago I sent out this tweet

That was Sunday, I showed them! Mind over wimpy neglected legs! The following day I took it easy, a couple of hours of not-super-intense riding. The following day I dished out another helping of "make yourself better" at a time-trial where I had a decent showing.

Two days off, I like these guys, they like to party.

Friday (Bring the Party!)

I do a new set for me
  20 seconds 100% effort
  10 seconds coast.
Me: How do you like me now!
Legs: ...looking into unionizing...

20 minutes later
Same set.

I'll admit, this was a taxing ride. It wasn't just my legs who didn't want to be a part of that workout anymore. This was really the first time they had put up any sort of fuss beyond getting tired. They were sore.


Head out for a swim workout.
Coach: Hey you should do the hard workout today
Me: Uhh, looks ok on paper

I also hear the coach convince another guy to level up for the day, he gives a much more enthusiastic response.

20 minutes later

Coach: Don't pay attention to the other guy, he went to do the easier set
Me: Wha? Huff -- puff
Legs: How are you enjoying the cramping in you calves...and quads
Me: I can deal, SUCK IT!

25 minutes later
Coach: Last set of sprints. OFF THE BLOCKS!!
Me: Where's the ladder? My legs don't work

First Sprint
Me: Goooooo!


Worst cramps ever
As soon as I hit the water on the very first sprint both calves cramped up like I had never experienced. I waited till the people were past and then lumbered out of the water like a sick walrus. Here's where I also mention there is an audience of about 50 high school aged girls watching on, waiting for their own swim practice to start. Lots of stares, and not the kind all the high school boys are hoping for. The coach came over and applied enough pressure to the bottom of my feet get my calves to stop flexing, and I missed the second two sprints. Unbelievable pain.

Next day

Legs: How do you like me now??

The next day was pretty painful to walk around. It was my daughters' combined birthday party though, so I made an effort to get into the bounce house. Much to my surprise it wasn't that bad. Walking was a chore, and my muscles were sore to touch.

So here I am two days later. We're back on talking terms. I've done a mid-level run, some mid-level swimming and some biking. Much to my surprise my legs only really bother me when I'm sitting or walking. They feel fine when I'm swim/bike/running. I'm hoping to be feeling good on Saturday for the last race of the year for me.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

TNT Year in Review

This year I wanted to do some time trials, it's in the goal list. I did it every time it was offered but once, and I chickened out that time due to the weather. Here's the year-end recap. All of these races are through a local spoke of the IC3 group. Overall I think it was fun, check them out:

May 7 (First Time Trial)

34:14.62 (19.27 mph)
Age Group21/22
Aero Bikes51/52

May 21

Cold and rainy, and I didn't know that ahead of time, so I was one of like three people who didn't have appropriate clothing

31:27.51 (20.98 mph)
Age Group16/17
Aero Bikes32/35
This picture looks downright pleasant - that's not the best description for it

Jun 18

30:06.57 (21.92 mph)
Age Group20/20
Aero Bikes49/52

July 2

This is the first time I had a handicap, they handicap racers to give them more of a good feeling compared the speed demons that come and place near the top consistently.

29:28.82 (22.39 mph)
Age Group16/194
Aero Bikes43/504

July 16

30:16.48 (21.8 mph)
Age Group15/209
Aero Bikes38/4617

Sitting at the start line

July 30

29:42.25 (22.22 mph)
Age Group19/229
Aero Bikes46/5016
Another start line shot - hopefully I've already started, cause otherwise I look way too intense

Aug 13

29:31.27 (22.36 mph)
Age Group18/214
Aero Bikes51/576
You can tell it's late into the season. The sun is very low on the horizon


I'm glad I did it. I causes me to have a few thoughts
  • Cyclists are fast. I mean I know triathletes are fast on the bike, and many of these people are triathletes, but many are cyclists and are quite fast. I am, often, at the bottom of this group. I am not at the bottom of a local triathlon on the bike (run - different story.)
  • 30 minutes is a short race. I'm only six minutes back from the front, and end up in the last 25% of the group. When I go to a tri where I race for just over an hour, 6 minutes back can still be top 10 overall.
  • There's tons of room to grow here, six minutes back in an 11 mile race is 5 miles per hour. If I could get a two mile per hour gain I'd only be mid-pack here, but a much bigger contender at triathlons.

Doing the same course over gives me two thoughts
  • First, you can do a sort of apples to apples comparison. I know on the first day I went a certain speed, and then on the last day I did the exact same race and finished 5 minutes faster. That's a fun thing to see.
  • Second, it's possible that some of that is just knowing the course better.
At least I got faster

Friday, August 9, 2013

Today's bike commute adventure

Yesterday my son got his tonsils out and had to stay the night at the hospital.

Pulling around his hydration system. The hospital people could learn a lot from runners :)

Trying on his clown nose

A dog came and visited. I'm pretty sure he would have worn a bare patch in her fur from petting had she stayed much longer.
I stayed the night with him and he was a champ, and we had a good time. He's doing fine and left for home just after I got to work.

The Trip

So the plan was that my wife would bring my bike the hospital in the morning, and I'd bike to work from there. It's not far, 10 or 12 miles and mostly on roads or trails I already knew. I woke up around 6 which was just a few minutes before my wife showed up. We chatted for a bit, I went and pumped up my bike tires and then changed and left.

So, I had looked at a route, I was going to hook up with a trail I had biked a lot a bunch of years ago, take that to Hopkins, hop on another trail, take that to a road I think is fine to ride on and then take that all to work. Something like four turns. No big deal.

Step 1: Find the trail

Map of me looking for the big green line
Since I had been on this trail many times I (naively) thought I would recognize it. I also had my phone with me, so I could stop and check for directions if I was lost. I pop out of the hospital parking garage, look at my phone and decide that it wants me to go west, it's morning, so I head toward the sun. I get to a major road and decide that perhaps I've gone the wrong direction. Check the phone, yep. Head back - pass the hospital, it was 1/2 a block away from where I started. This whole number happened before the map above as my watch searched for satellites and then waited for me to press the start recording button.

So I make the turn onto the road (thankfully I had only one choice on which way to turn) and then head toward where I believe the trail should be. I realize at this point that I don't recognize this area, and honestly when I think back that's because the trail is well hidden from the outside world and unless I had ever gotten off of it here, probably many people don't know it's there.

In the end, based on that map, I rode under the trail for three times before I realized that I was riding under it. The last time I rode under it I even saw the tiny trail leading up to the larger trail. This trail I have ridden 100 times easy, so I knew where I was going to get off of it. What I didn't know was how to find the entrance to the other trail.

Step 2: Find the trail.

This looks easy

So the map looks like - just cross the road and you're there. And that's true. And if you're like me and don't spend a lot of time finding new trails you may not be able to find a trail entry. If you're on bike level and don't know what to look for, what you see is a coffee shop, what looks like a bus stop and a factory parking lot. What you don't see is a  bike trail.

I stopped here, because I know coming up is the part of the trail that goes the wrong way.
From here I don't see anything that looks like a trail going anywhere but the one way I know is wrong. The woman is, like everyone else, on the part of the trail I already know. I check, my phone basically says I need to get on the other trail now, just cross the road. I elect to go a little further down the trail I do know and see what I see when I get to what I believe is the point of no return

Point of no return - turn right and I'll be going the wrong way
This is literally just a few hundred yards from the last shot. I know for sure I do not want to head right.

This is what is across the street
The phone is encouraging me to cross the street, so I do. Because honestly there is no oth
er right answer. (Insert Sherlockian comment here.)

The view from across the street
Another cyclist saves me at this point, as it basically looks like I'm riding into a parking lot. He goes trucking through and hops on, to me, an invisible trail. I get on that trail.

Step 3: Find the ... work

Actually this part is just sort of filled with doubt. I'm on a sort of schedule, but I have no idea where I am. All I know is that eventually I should come to a road I recognize and then get on that and take it to work. Once again I realize that from the bike path all roads look basically the same, and almost none of them are labeled. So I ride on, unsure of what is to come and then, thankfully, the road I want is labeled.

The rest, as they say, is history. I got to work a little bit slower than I wanted, but I did get there. I'm sort of hoping for good weather over the next few weeks as my commute to work has turned into a nightmare, and I'd like to be biking it which will take just a little longer, but not be nearly as painfully boring.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Race Review : Lakefront Days Sprint Triathlon

Another fun day at Lakefront days! I remember a few years ago wondering if this race would be able to keep up with other triathlons in terms of fun features or bonuses. But I think they're doing a great job. So this year they did three new things. First, added back an elite wave. Second, added a relay option. Third, turned the start into a time-trial type start.

Packet Pickup

I think I've done this race five times, and I've never once picked up my own packet. My wife did it again this year, and that's great. Apparently some little old lady paid her a compliment that made her day. So that's fun to hear.

Race Morning

The race started at 8, I set my alarm for 6:00. It's a perk of living down the road from the race. The plan was to leave the house by 6:45. I hit snooze and started moving around the house around 6:30. I ate some breakfast and biked over with my sister in law.

The morning was a little chilly, I had long sleeves and long pants on during the bike over. And I remember my hands getting cold. We got to the race site and went straight to the bike racks. The ends of the racks were reserved till 7:15 for registered elite racers. Thankfully, we milled around long enough that they announced the ends were open and I just grabbed the first one I saw. I got marked and chipped and found my friend Jeff who was doing his first non-Waconia triathlon. The water temp was 73, so I put my wetsuit on. We headed down to the water to get ready for the start of the day.

The Swim

Coming over to see my family before the race starts

A new feature to the race this year was a time-trail start. The sort of unique twist on this was that it's self seeded. Meaning, they want you to line up by projected swim time. The elite group would not be participating in the time-trial start, they'd go off a few minutes before the rest of us in a mass start. I sort of milled around the front of the line. It was sort of funny, because people were standing near the front, but not actually committing to be first. So I took position up front, and then heard a guy talking to a girl who I assume was his daughter. He suggested she had a projected finish time of 4 minutes. Uhh, that's FAST. We were supposed to line up by twos. She hesitated. I said "if you're going to finish in four minutes, you're going first." Then I asked her if she thought she'd really finish in four minutes, she said "well, probably just over."

Standing next to speedy

So the guy asks us if we're ready, we say we are, and off we go. First thing I notice, the girl hesitates. I don't see here again till almost the end of the swim. After that I don't see here till she's coming into the finish line.

The start, you can basically run to the first buoy. That's me out front.

The swim was pretty uneventful, when you basically start first because you are seeded fastest and that turns out to be true, you don't see anyone else. I did catch a few of the elite racers. I was surprised to find out that one was doing breaststroke and another was just kicking on their back. I guess it just goes to show that you can place well and really suck at swimming. I'm about 100% sure that's only true about swimming. You can't place well if you suck at either of the other two sports.

I came out of the water feeling pretty good.

Check out the spray coming off my feet!

The Bike

Butt is in gear
I had decided the night before that I would try this race with no socks. Last time I tried this I ended up kinda tearing up my foot, but I'd try again, the advantage in transition was appealing. I also used my tri clips again.

I felt like I got out of transition pretty fast. I saw my wife and kids running to cheer and take pictures. Unfortunately, I messed up getting into my shoes on the bike, and ended up stopping to fix the strap that had come undone. I'd estimate that between transition and the break on the bike to fix my shoe two people passed me.

Trucking out, no socks, no shoes. Soon to be no service :)

The bike didn't actually feel that great. I lamented about this a couple of years ago, but when you start out front, the only thing that can happen (unless you're going to win) is that people pass you. And that's what happened. Most people who passed me stayed out front. I did pass one guy who was part of a relay, but that's about it. In the beginning a 15 year old kid passed me on a hill, I caught him on the next downhill, then he caught me a while later on another hill around the half way point, I passed him not too long after that and didn't see him again during the bike.

In the last couple of miles I realized I was going to miss my bike goal. I didn't know what the swim time was, but I was pretty sure I was going to miss my bike goal. Another couple of guys passed me on the last turn, but stayed pretty close. I came in right next to one of them. Again I felt like I had a good transition, I am pretty sure I blew through there much faster than that guy. So at least I passed him back. Though in my rush, I left my watch on my bike. Oh well.

During the bike I counted maybe one guy who was in my age group that passed me. I was probably passed 6 times total.

Coming into transition - note my shoes off

The Run

I started out the run, and immediately my calves were cramping. I tried to run through it at first, but took a small break to massage it, maybe 5 seconds. The rest of the run was pretty uneventful. I got passed, of course. Also, my no sock plan was back firing on me. One of my toes was absolutely killing me, I was pretty sure there was a just a single piece of sand digging in. Also, toward the end a rock found it's way under my heel and started to get on my nerves. But I pushed through it, and it moved on.

Overall I felt like the run went pretty well, I counted another couple of guys from my age group pass me. I figured coming into the finish I was in fifth in my group.

The Finish

I tried to pick up speed near the end, but my foot was seriously killing me. All I could think was "take these shoes off"

Coming into the finish. This does not make me look fast

Hugs from my son - shoes are off

Hugs from my youngest

Toe damage - the blood actually soaked through the top of my shoe.

The Results


Obviously I'm a little disappointed that I didn't make the goal, though only missing by 2 minutes doesn't seem like the end of the world. I did feel like I had a good race.

The Swim
That's good enough for first overall. The four minute girl didn't pan out, though if she had that would have been awesome!

The Bike
This was almost predictable - I have no idea how I pulled those fast speeds at the end of the season last year. I felt like I pushed pretty hard on the bike.

The Run
I'm pretty happy with this. The run felt good, nice and hard. Obviously I wish I was a faster runner, and I'm not even too sure how to achieve it - again I get caught on the run and fall from second to fourth. Another nice thing was that I did this with no watch to keep pace. That makes me happy. Also, later, a couple of hours later I figured out with the help of my wife that actually it wasn't a piece of sand that wrecked my toe, when I looked at the blood spot on my shoe it was actually a seam that just dug into me. Oh well, I guess I'll wear socks till I can get some other shoes.

3/30 in my age group - technically 4/31, but the guy who got first placed 3rd overall, so I move up. I'm 1 minute out of third, 1:45 out of second, 8 minutes out of first. At this race third place means nothing as far as podium or awards, so we didn't even stick around because my sister was on her way to my house for a vacation.

Closing Comments

I felt like I had a great race. I got the opportunity to race with my sister-in-law and a friend. Also my whole family was there along with my brother-in-law. The more the merrier!

I like the low key nature of this race, also it's close to my house. I do like this race a lot, and would recommend it. I think it's fun to watch this race get a little better every year. I liked this format for time trial start, I liked the DJ they hired to MC, they had great volunteers and plenty of them, there is a good mix of talent and I think the course is decent.

Uncle Sam came to cheer and hang with family

The kids played when everyone was off and racing

The whole group - it was a fun morning

Packing up with help from the girls

Wearing dad's goggles on the way to the car
One more tri this year. Heading back to Maple Grove.