Co-Worker Relay at Tri-U-Mah Indoor Triathlon

>> Monday, February 05, 2024

Some of my co-workers in one of the departments where I teach decided to make a few teams and do some relays at Tri-U-Mah, which is an indoor triathlon at the University of Minnesota.

I was put on a team as a swimmer (because it was hardest to find swimmers early on), and then I got placed on ANOTHER team as a runner as well! The format of this race is all about counting how many miles you go over the same amount of time: 30 min swim (in a 25 yard pool), 10 min transition, 30 min bike (on a spin bike), 5 min transition, 30 min run (on a treadmill). So being I was on 2 teams, I swam for the first team, got a 45 min break, and then ran for another team.

The natatorium set up "sideways" with 20 lanes of 25 yards
(instead of 8 lanes of 50 meters).

Poolside ready to swim.

There were 3 of our teams starting in the 9:55 wave, and then another 2 teams starting a bit later. I chatted with Brad, with my boss Fancy, and with my other team's swimmer May. I had put on my pink plaid shorts, but I changed into my plain black jammer because I was afraid my pink jammer would be a bit "parachute-y" because I usually wear a wetsuit over those when I wear them for "real" triathlons. I really liked that they had a BIG clock above the pool, and I was able to look at this all throughout my race:

This heat finished at 9:50, and then I had a few minutes to warm up before my 9:55 start!

We started right on time, and I tried to start EASY. I get in trouble in races by swimming too fast too quickly. I didn't know what I could do: I was hoping to hit 1700 yards. I knew that 1:40/100 would be 1800 yards, and I figured that'd be GREAT. So I was a little scared when I hit the wall after 100, took 5 strokes before being able to breathe while looking at the clock, and seeing 1:29 when I finally saw it. That was a FAST 100!! Too fast?!? I gave back some time by hitting the 200 yard mark just after 3:00.

My splits seemed to be relatively consistent - I wasn't seeing EXACT splits, but I could get a sense of where I was by glancing at the giant clock. I was well under 8:00 for my first 500, which was FAST! I do a 3x500 workout where I'm usually at that pace... and then I get a break before doing it again! I posted about a super hard swim of 3x500 last month where my splits were slower! I still wasn't sure I'd make it through this swim... I was feeling good, but worried I'd be paying for my speed in 10 minutes!

Co-worker Brad on the left, and me on the right.

After a bit, I realized I was keeping my 2nd 500 under 8:00 as well. And then my THIRD 500 under 8:00 too!! I was doing quick mental math, and I figured I was RIGHT at pace to be able to do 1900 yards when I was thinking I'd do 1700. Sure enough, at 1700 yards I had 3:10 to 3:15 left to swim, so I was hoping to get 200 more yards for a solid 1900! As those last laps ticked off, I realized I'd be just a few seconds faster than I needed to be. I was able to take it a little easy on the last 25 knowing I was going to make it, and I actually stopped at the finish just a few seconds before they called time. (All that matters is full lengths, and I sure didn't have time to get in another length to make it 1925.)

Here were my 100 splits according to my Garmin, and then my 500 times:

1:28, 1:34, 1:35, 1:36, 1:39 = 7:52
1:35, 1:36, 1:34, 1:36, 1:35 = 7:56
1:34, 1:34, 1:36, 1:36, 1:34 = 7:54
1:34, 1:33, 1:33, 1:37

= 1900 yards in 29:59
1:34.68 / 100 yd pace

All 500s within 0:04!! And all under 8:00! Going 100 yards farther than I thought possible on a good day! I'LL TAKE IT!!!

Post-swim with May and Brad (who swam 1450 and 1150 yards respectively).

I rinsed the chlorine off, and I changed into my pink plaid shorts for the run. And my old-school track jersey. I went upstairs and found Jim (the cyclist for my team) at work:

Jim and I go back to the days of CVA! (And I hadn't met them yet,
but I had 2 other co-workers on the far left and far right of this photo.)

I stretched for a bit, and then bumped into the runner for my "first" team (as I was about to be running for my "second" team). Lila and I chatted and stretched a bit.

It looked like this looking to the east...

... and this looking to the west. Go Jim! And Meghan! (Over Meghan's shoulder
is Carol, the cyclist on May's and my team that I was about to run for.)

And notice the treadmills were behind the bikes. It's a quick and easy 5 minute transition from biking to running. Jim finished biking, and then he was running for another team (yes, this was a random mess of people trying to round-out teams). Before we started running, here's Lila (the runner for the team I swam for that Jim biked for), Jim (who was now running for Brad and Meghan's team), and me (about to run for May and Carol's team):

This guy was there too.

I got my treadmill figured out, and we were off and running! My goal here was to hit 5 miles. I actually wanted to see how far past 5 miles I could be after 30 minutes. So I started at 9.8 mph (just a bit slower than 6:00 pace) planning to speed up after a mile or so. Just before the first mile, I cranked it up 10.0 mph.

But I was hurting! That good swim took something out of me. I was sweating up a storm, and I was concerned I wouldn't make it the full 30 minutes. After 1.5 miles of running at 10 mph (right around the half-way mark), I cranked it back down to 9.8 mph. Damn. I held it there for another mile (so until about the 3.5 mile mark, which was around 21 minutes into the 30 minute run) and then cranked it back up to 10.0. And then up to 10.2 mph a bit after. I was pretty sure that 5+ miles was no longer possible, but I just needed to survive for a few more minutes.

After 4.5 miles, I was really hurting. With less than 1 minute left, I couldn't crank it up and sprint... instead I was knocking it down to 9.6 mph to not die. I REALLY was thinking about hitting stop and quitting a bit early, but I held on for the full 30 minutes.

In the end, here were my half-mile splits:

3:06, 3:03, 3:00, 2:59, 3:01, 3:03, 3:03, 2:59, 2:55, 2:48 (final 0.46 miles)

4.96 miles over 30:00
6:02.90 / mile pace

My boss grabbed a photo of us just after we finished. This is James (finished biking on another team), the 2 cyclists Meghan and Carol (who had finished biking 30 mins prior), Lila (who ran with me), and me:

Close-up. Look at how SOAKED my chest is!!!

More co-workers: James, Ashley (about to run), Fancy (swam after me), Jim, and Carlye (also swam).

Jim biking AGAIN! He biked, then ran, then biked... for 3 different teams!
So don't think I'm special for doing 2 events!

Ashley starting the run. "I'm already hot" she said just after I snapped this.

Selfie walking down to the locker room.

Close-up of the sweat on my shoulder. I was NASTY.

I set a 500 yd PR at the race!...

... and a 1000 yd and 1650 yd PR by default.

(I've swam farther than that for workouts obviously, but that's the farthest "straight through" that I'd done with that Garmin.)

I'll be back with results shortly! I was in the top few overall for run distance, but maybe only in the top 30 for swimming (sure, I'm "Steve in a Speedo," but I'm no swimmer!).


Post a Comment

Thanks for your comments! Have a great day!


Follow steveinaspeedo on Twitter

Facebook Fan Page

All content and original images copyright 2006 - 2024 by Steve Stenzel, AKA "Steve in a Speedo." All Rights Reserved.
Want to use something seen here? Just ask - I don't bite.