ABOVE: Bike Diva at 2009 Duathlon Season Opener
Although I've been a long distance cyclist, for the past 5 years, I have only recently added running back into my workout routine. I've done a couple of half marathons, but in the past year, I've been curiously interested in duathlons. A duathlon is similar to a triathlon, but instead of swim-bike-run, duathletes run-bike-run.
There is a series of sprint duathlons that take place in the south Florida area, so for 2009, I thought I'd like to try a few. On February 8th, I competed in my very first sprint duathlon. It was the Duathlon Season Opener which took place at Tradewinds Park in Coconut Creek. The duathlon option, which could also be raced as a sprint triathlon, was a 1 mile run, followed by a 10 mile bike ride, followed by a 2.5 mile run.
It was pretty interesting. Transitioning from the running to biking was pretty easy, but starting the second run portion, after getting off the bike was a challenge. My legs felt like jello as soon as I got off the bike, so I had to do a combination of walking and running, to get through the first half mile. Guess you get used to it after awhile, but I'll have to start doing a few bike-run workouts, i.e. bricks, if I'm going to continue doing duathlons.
ABOVE: Bike Diva Running at 2009 Duathlon Season Opener
Bike Diva Wins 2nd Place
I did okay for my first time out. I managed to get 2nd place in my age group, 45-50, but there weren't that many girls competing in my age group. But I got a cool acrylic plaque at the awards ceremony, so that was pretty neat. I didn't do too great with the two running portions, but I kicked butt on the biking. I've only been running for about a year, and that's been long distance running, so I'm hoping once I start training for shorter distances, that my run time starts to improve.
Here are my stats for the Duathlon Season Opener:
- Total Time: 1:11:15.353
- Run Time: 9:39
- T1 Time: 1:21
- Bike Time: 32:36
- T2 Time: 1:8
- Run Time: 26:31
- Overall Place: 76 out of 92
- Overall : 17.58242
- Gender Place: 21 out of 26
- Gender Percentile: 20
- Category Place: 2 out of 2
- Category Percentile: 0
- Series Points Earned: 89.71955
T1 stands for the transition from the run to bike, while T2 stands for the transition from the bike to the second run portion. You'd be surprised how much time you can loose in the transitions, searching for your bike, changing from running to biking gear, then from biking gear back to running gear. I guess that's another area I could train for to decrease my time, because I thought I had the transition all planned out, but I felt like a chicken with no head, what the heck am I supposed to be doing!?!
ABOVE: Bike Diva on the Podium
Chilly Willy Duathlon
My next sprint duathlon takes place this Sunday, March 1st, at CB Smith Park in Pembroke Pines. CB Smith Park is about a 46 mile drive from my house. I'll be getting up at around 4:30 AM, to get ready, and drive down to the duathlon.
Once you get to the park, you have to find a place to park your vehicle, then walk from your car, with your bike and athletic bag to the transition area. At the transition area, you have to find the rack with your racing number, and place your bike on the rack, and setup all your gear, underneath your bike. Then you have to find the table with the timing chips and pick up your timing chip, which gets worn around your left ankle. Then you have to go to the area where they mark your body. A volunteer uses a sharpie marker, and writes your racing number on your right shoulder, left shoulder, left thigh and writes your racing age on your right calf.
I'll be picking up my race packet, the day before, at Downtown Bicycles, in Ft. Lauderdale. The race packet has your race t-shirt, racing bib, bike number, and helmet number. You can pickup your race packet the day of the race, but that's too much stuff to take care of the morning of the event. And it's still dark when you get there, so I like to have my race packet ahead of time, so I can attach my helmet #, bike # and racing bib to my gear, at my house. The Chilly Willy duathlon is a 1.65 mile run, 11 mile bike ride, 1.65 mile run. Should be interesting!
Lynn Smythe AKA the Bike Diva