Lifetime Fitness Indoor Triathlon

>> Monday, March 15, 2010

Or “The Second Race of the Weekend.”

Or “Turning 2 More People On to Triathlons.”

Yesterday morning, I picked up Erik, then Hannah, and then Ben - 3 members of the “College of Visual Arts Triathlon Club.” We were all heading down to Lakeville for the Lifetime Fitness Indoor Triathlon.

- Erik is big into cycling, and he’s a CVA graduate. We were buddies when we were CVA students (a LIFETIME ago!). This was his first try at triathlon!

- Ben is a senior at CVA. He’s been swimming a lot lately with his wife, and he wanted to give this a shot. It was his first triathlon as well!!

- Hannah is an old pro at this - she did the Chisago Lake Sprint Triathlon last July, and this was going to be her THIRD indoor triathlon in the last year!

Here are the 4 of us about 5 minutes before our wave started:

Hannah, Erik, Ben, and I

Here’s Ben getting excited to swim:

(Short story on Ben’s beard: he’s growing it out for a Passion Play this Easter. Then he’s going to KEEP growing it out because he was asked to play Jesus next year! Sweet! And in that photo above, he kinda looks like “Buddy Christ” from Dogma. Ha!)

Hannah and Erik shared a lane, and here they are getting ready to go:

So the race format is this: 10 minute pool swim, 10 minute T1, 30 minute spin, 5 minute T2, 20 minute treadmill run. Then, they “rank” everyone against everyone else in each discipline, and award points based on performance. So the thing that helps keep these nice “low-key” events is that you have no idea how well you’re doing compared to everyone else - it’s not very intimidating at all!


Erik gave us all awkward fist bumps, they blew a whistle, and we were off! I took off at a solid (but not TOO hard) pace. I noticed after about 1.5 laps that Ben was resting at one end of the pool. I knew he was a better swimmer than that, so I hoped he was OK. He did another length or 2, and then was hanging onto the wall again. The 3rd time I saw him stopped, I pulled up quick, and asked if he was OK. He smiled and said something like “Oh yeah - now get going!” I figured he maybe went out too hard, but I didn’t know.

My splits were coming together pretty well. My 100 meter splits were 1:34, 1:44, 1:46, 1:46, and 1:49. I had over a minute left, so I was able to bang out another 75 meters in the final 1:19. That was 23 lengths!! (575 meters, or 630 yards) That’s the farthest I’ve ever done in 10:00!

They blew the whistle, Erik and Hannah hopped out, and I gave Ben a hand up and out of the pool. Erik did MUCH better than he thought he would, and Hannah improved her swim since the last indoor by a half a length! Sweet!


Ben didn’t look too hot. Later, we learn that it was a stomach / poop issue. (I’m hope I’m not over-sharing, Ben!) He headed to the bathroom and told Erik and I to go on without him. We both reminded Ben that he could come up to the spinning studio as soon as he felt better and log some miles on the bike. He said he would. (And I KNEW he would.)

Erik had a problem that I usually have it T1: he was SUPER dizzy getting out of the water. But he was better in no time. We changed and headed up to the bikes. When we got there, Hannah was already on her bike. She was proud to be the first one out of our wave on her bike!

We made final bike adjustments, and we were spinning!


We took off spinning at a CRAZY cadence! The bike computers just count “miles” as the flywheel goes around, so you can spin SUPER fast with little resistance to log the best distance. I had warned Erik that this was NOTHING like road-riding at all! He quickly agreed!

During the last indoor tri, I counted my RPMs over 15 seconds. I counted to 40, which is a cadence of 160! This time, I counted to 42-43, which is a cadence of 168-172! I was hoping I could maybe do a little better than last time!

Ben came in about 5-6 minutes after we had started, and I was happy to see him! He looked better, and he was ready to spin! I felt bad that he was having such a crappy (pun intended) first triathlon, but I’m SOOOO glad he didn’t throw in the towel in T1, which he easily could have done. Nice work sticking with it, Ben!!

I asked the volunteer who was flirting with me (you heard me) if she could grab my camera and snap a shot of us. Here we are all spinning:

Hunter Kemper (on the wall), Erik, Hannah, me, and Ben

Then she wanted to take another one:

I don’t know what Ben’s doing, but I approve!!


We were watching TV coverage of the Lifetime Fitness Triathlon on the 2 projection TVs, and that was fun motivation. We all chatted a bit and worked our asses off on the bike. Hannah did about a mile more than last time, and so did I! We were both watching our numbers climb, trying to get to the next big number before they called time.


We walked 200 feet to the treadmills. Nothing dramatic.

Erik stretched his hammys, and Hannah tied her (non)running shoes:

Ben relaxed for a moment and got out a nice yawn:


Side story: I didn’t know how my legs would hold up after the 10 mile race 2 days ago. Local rockstar triathlete Cathy Yndestad gave me some recovery advice on how to act right after the 10 miler to get ready of the indoor tri the next day. She said she once did another tri the day after doing an Oly tri, and she didn’t feel too bad until the day after the SECOND race. To over-simplify, her big advice was to cool-down well with some stretching, maybe an ice-bath (see video in previous post!), lots of vitamin C and glutamine, compress, and elevate. And this advice is coming from the 2009 USAT Triathlete of the Year, so it’s WORTH taking! Thanks Cathy!!

So anyway, my legs were feeling OK after the 10 miler the day before. I was PRETTY surprised!! The 4 of us were off and running:

Cathy Yndestad was going to be at that Lifetime during the race, so she said she’d stop over and say hi. Sure enough, she showed up and tried to take another photo of us. An oddly aggressive volunteer (the same one that took the photo of us above) told her “This is serious...they need to focus now...” and wouldn’t let her take a photo. Weird. Anyway, thanks for stopping by to say hi, Cathy!

So we all did all right on the run! At the last indoor tri, I ran 3.25 miles. I ran strong throughout this run, but I didn’t go NUTS at the very end. My legs were a little hashed, and I didn’t feel like hurting anything. Call me weak. Whatever. I still managed just overt 3.2 miles. I’ll take it! Hannah ran farther than she did at the last one, so she improved in ALL 3 AREAS!! Nice work!

All sweaty, smelly, and glorious, we snapped one last photo:

Nice job guys!!!

Everyone headed down to the locker room. I went to find Cathy and say good-bye. Then Erik, Ben, and I hit the sauna for a moment. We hit the road, and someone muttered the word “Chipotle.” So we HAD to go. (It’s like that rule Homer Simpson has: when someone says "Moe's," he has to go to Moe's.)

Erik DESTROYING a burrito

“Uhh... #59, stop cramming that burrito in your face. Thank you.”

I got home and took a look at my toe. I didn’t have blood on my sock like last time (from spinning so out of control on the bike), but I DID have a nice little blister. Yum.

Nice work Hannah, Erik, and Ben!! Way to improve all your distances, Hannah!! And congrats on your first indoor tri, Erik and Ben!! SHOW THESE 3 SOME LOVE, EVERYONE!!! They done good!!

Back with the results as soon as they come in! Have a good week everyone!


Kitzzy 8:13 AM, March 15, 2010  

Congrats to all, an especially the new triathletes! It's such a great accomplishment. Great job!

I actually wanted to try this indoor tri, but they got rid of the one in FL. Maybe if they bring it back I'll give it a try, though it sounds tough!

Christi 8:22 AM, March 15, 2010  

Great job to everyone! And did you say Chipotle, yummmm!

CoachLiz 8:49 AM, March 15, 2010  

It's all good when Hunter Kemper photobombs you at an indoor tri.

Great job to you, Erik, Hannah, and Ben!

Steve Stenzel 8:59 AM, March 15, 2010  

Ha! Glad you caught that Liz! ;)

Gabriel Losa 9:02 AM, March 15, 2010  

Congratulations to you all!
To you, Steve, on the "two races in one weekend" madness. To Hanna on her super sweet improvement. And to Erik and Ben on their first indoor tri!

Jennifer 10:16 AM, March 15, 2010  

Whoo- hoo!!! Great job everyone! The coolest thing about this post is that everyone looks happy! Even with the suffering. Extra high-fives to Ben for sticking with it even though he was feeling like $hit. I love these posts - it makes me so excited for my own race season. Congrats again Hannan, Erik, Ben and Steve!

SteveQ 10:23 AM, March 15, 2010  

That picture of Ben in the water giving a thumbs-up is exactly why I won't do triathlons.

Unknown 11:59 AM, March 15, 2010  

Congrats to everyone! And there's no better post race meal than Chipotle! :)

Hope you had a great birthday weekend Steve!

X-Country2 12:07 PM, March 15, 2010  

Looks like everyone had a great time. Congrats to all!

Steve Stenzel 12:46 PM, March 15, 2010  

SteveQ, Ben's NOT peeing - if that's what you were implying.... ;)

Regina 1:54 PM, March 15, 2010  

Nice work, all of you! I did my first indoor tri in January. I was not expecting the bike to be what it was, that super fast cadence!! That is how I got my "hinterland" injury. I'll be lubing up plenty next time.

Well done and happy birthday!

Kim 1:55 PM, March 15, 2010  

awesome job to everyone! and happy birthday steve!

Steel Springs 3:25 PM, March 15, 2010  

Congratulations to all of you! It looks like a fun race. Happy birthday!

Aileen 8:22 PM, March 15, 2010  

You guys look you had a lot of fun! More fun than anyone should have on a treadmill anyway!

T 9:34 PM, March 15, 2010  

woo, congrats everyone! for some reason, i don't know if i could do an indoor tri. i like my time outside. so for that reason, woo!

Carolina John 9:58 PM, March 15, 2010  

seems like a fun race with good friends and good burritos. well done steve!

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