21st of January 2018, I raced at the elite energy Nowra triathlon. The competitors where presented with some pretty harsh heat with the mercury reaching 33 degrees Celsius, with little wind it felt warmer than it was. The heat assisted in some adverse racing conditions.
The swim was a straight line 750 meter swim in the balmy water of Shoalhavan River. The current was quite strong resulting in a quick swim. As I started swimming it was evident that the jellyfish would be nuisance and painful part of the race that would be present for the majority of the race. As I look back at the swim I realise that my focus was unfortunately drawn away from what I should of been thinking of such as my stroke technique and breathing pattern, to the painful stings of the jellyfish. After the swim I was happy with my time and the amount of energy I had exerted.
The ride was a 20 kilometre, flat, out and back on a relatively rough section of road. There was no shortage of straight sections to tuck in and “go for it” which helped me to gain a rhythm with my cadence and power. The ability to find a rhythm resulted in me feeling the best I have ever felt riding my bike after a swim. With the efficiency I was riding with I was able to keep my heart rate lower than usual and give myself a good chance at having a good run off the bike.
The run was a 5 kilometre run with many turns to keep my hurting body occupied. I set off with the hope for a good run which ended up being the complete opposite. As I reached the 1 kilometre mark I started finding it really hard to breath, resulting me having to walk through one aid station and fill up on some water and electrolytes to try and get my body working again but to no avail. I slowly pushed through the next 2.5 kilometres till I started to regain my ability to breath properly. With 1500 meters to go I was able to increase my speed and try and make up some of the lost time, by this stage I was severely overheated and struggled to feel “normal”. I made it to the finish line in a very undesirable time.
Looking back at the race something to look at trialling and improving would be cadence on the bike. Increasing my cadence a little bit might help improve my ability to run off the bike and not have a detrimental build up of fatigue in my legs.