Saturday, October 30, 2010

Mini-triathalon cycling results

photo from
Friday afternoon I participated in a mini-triathalon relay at work. The running, swimming, and biking events are being held on separate days and will be done by different members of each 5-member team. There are something like 11 teams. My role on my team was to cycle on a stationary bike for 5 miles as fast as I could. My time would then be added to the time another teammate swam 400 yards, plus the time another teammate ran for 2 miles. The people at work who organized this were concerned about setting up a cycling course outdoors, as they would have to have closed some roads, and that's not in the budget. So the cycling competition was held on stationary bikes in the company fitness room. I had practiced using the stationary bike before and my time last week was 5 miles in 10:04. My goal this time was to beat the 10-minute mark. Incidentally, to cycle 5 miles in 10 minutes is 30mph, but I have expressed some doubt about the reality of this in a previous blog entry. Anyway, I guess I should report my success now. I did 5 miles in 9 minutes and 48 seconds, just a bit faster than when I had practiced a week before. I was very satisfied with this until a member of an opposing team went 5 miles in 9:32. What?! How could that guy beat me? Well, that's OK. Let me be realistic. My opponent was 13 or 14 years younger than me. Surely in the last 14 years I have lost 16 seconds in cycling ability. The reality of age is so evil, except you know what? I think I could have gone faster. I was breathing hard but not that hard. I doubt my heart was beating at its maximum level. I forgot to wear my heart rate monitor so I don't know for sure. But why didn't I go all-out? I don't think I'm afraid of hurting myself any more, but instead, I was too cautious about how I'd feel after the competition. I know from my swimming workouts that once I spend every calorie of energy that I have, I feel spent and fatigued for the rest of the day, or until I take a nap. It's not a pleasant feeling and it interferes with other aspects of life, so I try NOT to work that hard. When I compete again in a few months I will try to remember to schedule some nap time after the race. Now that I think about it, I know I had extra energy available since after my cycling I hopped on the treadmill and ran for 5 more minutes.

Regardless, I did not let my team down. The third opponent did 5 miles in 12:49 so I know my race time was competitive. I'm surprised how competitive I've become. I want to win. I've got a super-swimmer on my team, and my runner came in fourth (out of 11). We're still in the to speak!

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