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Race Result

Racer: Jeff Wolfe
Race: Colonial Beach Triathlon
Date: Sunday, July 15, 2007
Location: Colonial Beach, VA
Race Type: Triathlon - International Distance
Age Group: Male 45 - 49
Time: 2:22:35
Overall Place: 116 / 305
Age Group Place: 14 / 35
Comment: Five years later and 20+ minutes faster

Race Report:

Swim 0:17:53
T1 0:02:35
Bike 1:10:55
T2 0:01:52
Run 0:49:18

Five years ago in 2003, I did the Colonial Beach triathlon as my first triathlon in almost 15 years (I did Reston once back in the 1990s). In 2003, I had a terrible swim (over 29 minutes for 1K - I was one of those lost by the current with the boat), but a decent bike and run for my first race. Since then I have consistently trained and raced over the past few years and I am doing my first Ironman down in Florida in November. I thought this would be a good race to prep for Florida since the swim was in the river and the bike and run were mostly flat. This weekend was at the end of my first recovery week for Ironman training following my 20 week plan with 16 weeks to go. I am not sure that several years ago I would call a 10 hour training week with a race a recovery week but in the first 3 weeks I have put in between 12-14 hours so I was more rested then I have been for a while.


Drove up the day before with my training partner without my family (they chose to stay home, hang out by the pool and go shopping). Packet pickup was quick and we were back at the hotel by 6 so I watched the Tour and got some sleep. The race started early (before 7 – another reason my family didn’t come) so we left the hotel by 5:15 to get to the race site. Set up was easy but I didn’t like the bike racks. Not lots of room between bikes or for your bags. I met Fabrice before the race. The swim heats were only 3 minutes apart so there wasn’t much time to wait.


My shoulder was still sore since my run in with a dog several months ago but I have started swimming more for Ironman training. This would be my 4th swim in 7 days. The water was a beautiful color of brown. Before the swim, they said to skip the last buoy and then they changed their mind. Five years ago, I got lost on the swim so I really wanted to concentrate on where I was going. The first leg of the triangle was really crowded and I got bumped a lot but I had no problem with the first turn. The next leg of the triangle is where I ran into trouble last time so I concentrated to check the buoys out. I turned at the last buoy and headed for shore. I felt the current pulling my down river for the first time but I stayed on course and exited the water in under 18 minutes. I was hoping to break 21 minutes so I was thrilled. I had almost 11 minutes on my race from 5 years ago and this was my fastest swim ever.


Nothing special here once I got to the transition area. The wet suit came off no problem and on the bike I went.


I love this bike ride. Nice rolling hills and long flats. No killer uphills but certainly some places to change gears. I settled quickly into my pace and after about 15 minutes I was biking with a group of 4 guys and 2 girls. We stayed together most of the rest of the race. I consistently passed people and was passed very few times. The uphills were easy for me but not for others (I guessed they must live in Va Beach). My bike computer broke several weeks ago so I just biked as I felt. I didn’t eat anything on the bike and only drank ½ bottle of Accelerade. I think this came back to haunt me on the run. I finished averaging 21 MPH. This was a little faster than the Reston Sprint but it was twice the distance. It was also my fastest average bike time in a triathlon ever. See what those extra ironman training miles will do. My bike ride was 12 minutes faster than 5 years ago!!


I felt good getting off the bike but couldn’t find my rack or my stuff. Once I found my space, I was crowded out my neighbor’s bike but got my running shoes and number on quickly and headed out.


I was looking forward to the run. Its usually my best event and I have been doing my first speedwork in several years. I did an easy 3 mile tempo run on Thursday where I averaged around 7 minutes per mile so I was hoping to go around 7:40 for the race. The first 3 miles were around 8 minutes per mile but I was getting faster with each mile. I saw Fabrice and Shawn on my way out. I hit the turn around feeling pretty good but I just started getting slower. I am guessing I just ran out of gas. I probably should have drunk more accelerade or had some gel on the bike. I did the last 3 miles between 8:15 and 8:30. So although my run time was 11 seconds faster than 5 years ago, the course was shorter by 2 tenths of a mile this time. Not sure why they did this. I liked the old course but I guess this course closed fewer roads and was easier to have the water stops.


I cant complain about this race. Five years have gone by and the consistency of my training has really shown the improvement. I was 24 minutes faster this year than the last time. If you take off 2 minutes for the shorter run, it still shows lots of improvement. Today starts my 5th week of Ironman training. I ran 6.5 miles this morning and I am off to the pool for my swim workout.

See you on the road.