Chicopee Triathlon and the Princess is home

Chicopee Triathlon and the Princess is home

The Chicopee Triathlon is one of my favorite races. It’s close to home, it’s fast and the course is great. It was supposed to rain, but it looks like it is going to hold off. 60 degrees is perfect for racing, but 60 and pouring would feel Arctic. Kelly has also signed up and this will be Paul and Laura’s first attempt at a full triathlon.

The swim course has been set up in the lake and Im a happy camper. The course looks short (since the crash I haven’t been swimming and the sooner Im out of the water the better). I will be starting in wave 2 (the women are in wave 3, the young guns and older guys are in wave 1). The swim starts and I get in a good spot and just work as hard as I can to “Get er done”. I hold my own on the back stretch and I sat on the heels of a few guys to the finish of the swim. I struggle to find my wetsuit strap and then BOOM! It get’s unzipped by the guy behind me. I turn and it is Matt Salmon giving me the helping hand. “Thanks Matt” and Im off to the bike. I decided to do something on the bike that i haven’t done in years. Use the cages and wear my running shoes on the bike (instead of the cycling shoes). This is supposed to save a few seconds in transition from bike to run. Remember the word “supposed to”. So I grab the bike and off I go. I jump on the bike and almost get plowed into by the F@#ing guy ahead of me. Guess who it is, Matt salmon! I think he was just screwing with me and off I go. I roll out of the park and turn onto Burnett Road. I get into a groove and something ain’t right. My saddle feels low. That’s what i forgot! I always would raise my saddle about a quarter of and inch with the running shoes because of the thickness of the sole (remember the supposed to save time comment). It will only slightly slow me down and it won’t even matter when i am standing and climbing. The bike goes well and I was only challenged by a young gun, who finally gave up when i put the heat on during one of the gradual climbs. As I head back to transition I get a glimpse of some Cyclonauts ahead of me. It looks like George (who is doing a relay), Little Joe and Rob Albrecht. I finish the bike in the 45 minute range (about a minute slower than last year) and I am happy with that. I did my transition quickly and gained some time having the running shoes already on. I start the run and I feel quick (I haven’t had this feeling since knee surgery last year). What i mean is that I can run instead of jog and my quads are not cramping at all. I pass Emily (who is George’s daughter doing the relay) and give her a pat on the back and continue on. I catch little Joe just before the “Big Hill”. He glances back to see it’s me and put’s it into high gear on the climb (he doesn’t know it, but Im already 3 minutes ahead of him because of the staggered start). I use him as a carrot to keep my pace steady. Rob A. is just ahead of us. Loop 2 of the run I still have Joe in sight and Rob has pulled away. Loop 2 goes good and my running legs are still feeling strong (this course is very hilly). we finish our 2 laps and head to the finish line. It is cool to see all the people starting their run as we are finishing (the course is like a lolly pop. you go out, do 2 loops and then head back on the same road you came in on). I finish the race feeling strong and ran about a minute and a half faster than last year (this is a very good sign that the legs are slowly coming back). i ended up 3rd in my division and 14th overall (Not bad for a Grand-Pa). Now i think i will roll the dice and shoot for the Half ironman in 2 weeks (last year this was a race that the leg’s were not ready for and I almost didn’t finish).

After the race we headed over to Chris and Jen’s to see the baby. They just brought her home and she is doing great