Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Tri vs. Solo - the Bike Breakdown

After this impending swim in April, I will have done each 'event' solo and as part of a triathlon. I was breaking them down today and trying to figure out what I liked best and why. It's all so different. The truth is, I'm not really great at any of the three BUT I can do them all fairly effectively which gets me through. Non-tri people always ask, what's your best event? None of them, really, I mean, I'm no collegiate swimmer type, I have to work really hard on the run part (people always think I'm a runner because of my build), and I love the bike but it doesn't always love me....so I'm sure I just say something dumb like the bike so they'll stop asking me questions I don't know how to answer.

Bike Event Tri vs. Bike Event Road Race

History - Before I went tri, I was a 'runner.' Did all distances up to and including the marathon but my body just did not appreciate it AT ALL. So I turned to cycling and got obsessed about that for a while and rode 4-5 days a week. After riding a while, some genius told me to give road racing a try.

Road Race - maybe I didn't take it seriously enough? These were from our team pictures.

You know, they have categories so you'll be with all beginner women. I'm thinkin, perfect, we're all in the same boat, broken apart from the rest of the crazies out there, going a lesser distance for our race, great, I'm in. We line up as a pack, I head to the back because I really don't know what is going on, no one is really talking to each other either, everyone is just waiting for word 'go' - this is NOT in my nature or women's nature for that matter, at a minimum there's usually some idle or nervous chatter but it was silent, except for my loud ass. We start to roll out, this isn't so bad (we hadn't really started yet but I didn't know it). We stick together for a while and then it happens - you look down for a second and you're dropped like a bad habit...never to be seen or heard from again. So, without a draft and with no one around, you get to do the whole ride alone. OH, you didn't know that you had to support your own feed zone? Hell, I didn't even know how to grab a bottle on the fly back then. Yep, out of water and sunburned too, nice. Everyone else was waiting for their results and had probably showered when I rolled in. There wasn't even a good job, way to go, way to stick it out, in the bunch - they (the CAT 4 beotches, not my team) just looked down their nose at you like, why did you even bother? I didn't know I was riding with men or men disguised as women, go F yourself. That, my friends, was my one and ONLY attempt at road racing.

Triathlon, Leg #2, the bike - yep, I'm eating a sandwich, it was a long day, gimme a break.

Since everyone is spaced out , it's not like a road race where you start (and attempt to stay) with the pack. BUT, as you make your way through transition, people are usually smiling and cheering. This will do anyone's psyche a bit of good AND knowing that you've got one down and two to go. You get changed (maybe), make your way to your bike and you're on the road. As you get passed, inevitable, many people will make a funny comment, a good job, you look strong - something. Others will fly by but there really are lots of encouraging words being thrown about out there. I guess I'm not that competitive or place in my age group or anything, maybe it would be different. I'd like to think not. Hell, even at the swim start everyone is wishing each other luck and be safe out there.

For Cycling...

Triathlon Score 1

Road Racing 0

The run breakdown to come - it's so much more complex, so many distances to choose.

Got in ~4100 yards swimmin last nite, plowed through my workout as fast as possible...if anyone cares:

100EZ - 500 pace - 100EZ - 10x50 fast
100EZ - 400 pace - 100EZ - 8x50 fast
100EZ - 300 pace - 100 EZ - 6x50 fast
100EZ - 200 pace - 100EZ - 4x50 fast
100EZ - 100 pace - 100EZ - 2x50 fast

And this does not include my warm up, woohoo. Oh, got home and pointed at some region below my lats and said to Ryan - I'm sore in an all new place, right here below my lats. His response - we're getting old and our shit is sagging, those are your lats. hahahaha Damn it all to hell!


Ryan said...

You've got to know where the photo spots are at and next time hide the sandwich in your pocket.


Melanie said...

what a great post! I never thought about the differences of tri vs. solo. I'm not sure I nerves strong enough to take me through a solo ride like that. Looking forward to the running comparison!

IronBob (spawning?? at IMAZ 08) said...

Nothing like positive reinforcement at the home front to keep you going (LOL)!! Great post, like usual.

The Running Girl said...

Interesting comparison. Nice swim! Had to laugh at the "lats" comment.

Jo Lynn said...

That sounds like exactly the difference between running road races and trail running.

Janice {Run Far} said...

love your pictures. You are a hoot

Marcy said...

Note to self: NEVER going road racing. Thank you for that PSA :-)

Diana said...

I thought shitting all over my self these last few days was funny, but this post was a frickin' crack me up!
Thanks so much for the laughter in my day!
I agree on the road racing-that sounded really like it sucked, but love the sandwich shot on the tri!
I can't wait to get out and kick my own ass again-I hope soon :-)

Wes said...

I'm not really great at all three either, but I am starting to really dig the swimming. I need to go check my lats to see how old I am :-)

Chloe said...

That photo by far is a classic. I really hope it's framed in an awesome place around your house.

Biggest loser is not nearly as awesome with out Joelle. I really need to find a new person to make fun of. I'm thinking one of the formal models. But it would be awesome if the lady with the 20 million kids was on the show. Please - give me your feedback :)

Carly said...

Road racing would make me hang it up all together....not that I bike now. It sounds BRUTAL.

LMAO at the sammy pic.

Anj said...

Ditto on the road racing. The one crit I did scared the hell out of me and bruised my ego. Glad you have fun at tris....stick with the fun races!!

Lana said...

You need a mtn bike...it beats them all.

LOVE the picture!!

IronMissy - it's official!

IronMissy - it's official!
A vision in green!